"Team no leg day" is no longer the team you belong to. (Well, it never really was like that, but there were many participants, no matter.) Man or girl, big quad muscles are as enviable as chiseled arms or shaped glutes. Without her, your body is not shiny. However, achieving them requires time, volume, and the right amount of exercise to do the workout.
The squat is the gold standard for building muscle in the legs. But the leg extension machine has been unjustly polluted for many years. Team Bodybuilding.com athlete Julian Smith is here to teach us once and for all how to use this machine successfully and without injury.
"I have never suffered injury in my 1
The simple but effective hacks in the companion video will help you inflate the quadriceps muscles for a more athletic shape without avoiding 80-years knee-syndrome. After all, he's not called "The Quad Guy" for nothing.
Here are Smith's tips on how to effectively use the leg extensors in your workout.
Find the Right Posture or Foot Position for You
The first thing Smith emphasizes is that the size of your wheels determines how you set yourself up on this machine. Of course, your anatomy takes into account the position in which you will get the best possible quad muscle, just like a squat or a deadlift. For example, if your legs are longer, you might feel a broader posture than more comfortable.
Avoid Leg Extension Machines with a Control Arm
Says Smith: "Have you ever had the feeling that one side gets a little bit more leg-extension when you look down, You will actually see that the arm is lying on one side over time It is bent because the inner arm is the fulcrum. "
If a single-arm leg extension is your only option and you find that the pad is bent forward He suggests that the outer leg be padded with a knee wrap or sweat to balance your positioning.
Use the handles on the sides
If you specify the obvious, these handles exist for a reason.
"Once you have chosen such a heavy weight that you start to push at the beginning, it starts to lift you a little, that's when you pull back. We fell into the seat with the handles and pull ourselves all the way high, "says Smith.
And no, that's not a scam. Your legs do the work to get the full lockout that you would not otherwise get. This leads Smith to his next tip …
You should completely contract and lock your quads
. Most tournament soldiers have heard that stretching the knees on the leg extension causes pain. In fact, according to Smith, this is the most important part of the movement.
"It's a complete contraction that you can not do anything else in a quad-focused exercise," he says.
The tension from start to finish is constant, and at full contraction you feel the burn most. Not locking out would leave the goldmine of this exercise untapped.
Do not bend your legs during the repetitions
When you talk about pain, there is a possibility that your knees will hate you for this exercise. And that's when you bend your legs by following your knees Let sides drift. They point in one direction while your legs move the weight straight up. Instead, says Smith, keep the upper and lower halves of your wheels aligned during each repetition.
If you point your toes in both directions, just do it lightly.
If you point your toes in or out, you are not & # 39; In another part of the quadriceps, you really will not feel it, unless you drastically change the position of your knees along with them. This directly leads us to the problem of bending your knees in or out. However, Smith says small adjustments can make a difference without compromising the health of your joints.
So that's it – a quick reference to the importance of including the leg extension in the squat in your repertoire of strength training exercises for this important muscle group!