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The Most Instagrammed Weight Training Exercises

fitness couple perform squats

A new study by fitness experts BarBend has revealed the most Instagrammed weight training exercises by analysing the hashtag data of each one, with squats being the most popular weight training exercise on Instagram, according to the new research.

It found that squats were by far the most popular exercise, thanks to 39,274,682 hashtagged posts in total, more than double the number of hashtags compared to deadlifts in second place.

Squats are considered a crucial exercise in many exercise programmes and have been used in many variants in weight training, powerlifting, bodyweight exercises and more.

Deadlifts come in second place, totalling 16,154,125 hashtagged posts. Commonly used for quick muscle production, they’re also one of the more effective exercises for knee rehabilitation. They’re one of three powerlifting exercises, along with squats and bench presses, which also make up the top three in this list.

Bench presses take third place with 5,520,220 hashtagged posts in total. Commonly used to develop chest muscles, they’re used in weight training primarily, along with bodybuilding.

The exercise has been adjusted into different variants, such as incline, decline and flat bench presses and is one of the top choices for those wanting to build heavy muscle.

Pull-ups fall just outside the top three, with a close fourth place thanks to 5,326,929 total hashtagged posts. A popular choice in callisthenics and overall bodyweight exercising to build muscle, many variations now exist, including one-arm pull-ups, weighted pull-ups, kipping, supine rows and even leg pull-ups.

RankExerciseTotal hashtags
3Bench press5,520,220
8Leg press833,271
9Shoulder press350,913
10Leg extension173,822

In fifth place is push-ups, coming in with 4,553,188 total hashtagged posts. Push-ups are again a staple exercise in callisthenics programmes; they have evolved to be performed in many ways through different variants like weighted, knee, planche and knuckle push-ups. They are also often used in the military and martial arts as a form of punishment.

With 3,030,776 hashtagged posts, crunches come in sixth place. One of the most popular abdominal exercises, they’re commonly used in the building of six-pack abs and are popular due to their lack of equipment needed and the lack of space that is required.         

Commenting on the findings, a spokesperson from BarBend said: “These figures give us an idea of what might be the most common exercises for weight training and may even give prospective gymgoers an idea of where to start and may even provide workout influencers idea for content. It’s also interesting to see the top three composed of the three powerlifting exercises, which highlights the popularity of it.”