What the Bucket Brigade is:
This is the bucket carry: A gravel-filled 5-gallon bucket that must be carried 200-to-400 meters in a Spartan Race. Usually, this is on a steep and winding trail on a hill.
The Bucket Carry requires upper-back strength, grip strength, posterior-chain endurance, and glute strength.
2019 Obstacle Update:
For the 2019 season, the buckets in the bucket brigade will be sealed upon the racer's arrival at the obstacle. This ensures standard weights for all competitors.
Best Exercises to Prepare With:
Here are two great exercises that will help you build strength and endurance for the Bucket Brigade Obstacle. Make them part of your training, if you're currently not doing them.
Goblet Squat: This exercise mimics the movement of properly picking up your rock-filled bucket without injury and builds strong glutes and quads. Grasp a dumbbell (40 to 70 pounds) and hold it vertically with two hands around the top weight plates. Hold it with elbows bent next to your chest. Stand with feet about shoulder-width apart. With a straight back, bend your knees and sit your butt back as if sitting in an imaginary chair. Lower until your thighs are parallel with the floor, then explosively straighten your legs to return to start. Do 10 to 12 repetitions, 3 sets.
Reverse Lunge: Grab a dumbbell as you did in the goblet squat or bearhug a heavy sandbag against your chest. From a standing position, step your right foot back into a reverse lunge, lowering your right knee until it hovers an inch over the floor. Press back to the starting position. Next reverse lunge with the left foot, and step back. Continue altering legs for 12 total lunges, 3 sets. The reason for reverse lunges rather than forward lunges is that it prevents you from drifting your front knee over the toes of that foot, which can cause injury.