Is legs exercise an important part of your daily fitness routine? Or are you planning to add leg work out in your daily gym routine for a healthier routine and stronger legs?
Legs consist of some of the biggest and most important muscles of our body, and to strengthen those muscles means you love to work for your healthy lifestyle and a strong body.
There are a lot of exercises that you can perform to increase your leg strength and also there are a lot of exercise machines that provide you with the ability to reach your desired level of lean mass and toned legs.
Some of these exercise machines that you can use at the gym to strengthen and smarten your legs, are described below:
- LEG PRESS:
MAIN MUSCLES EFFECTED BY THIS EXERCISE: GLUTES MAXIMUS, HAMSTRINGS, QUADRICEPS
This is one of the most popular leg exercise machine. This machine doesn’t not only support your back but also provides a modified squat position. Using this machine means that you can work your quads, glutes and hamstrings without putting too much weight on your back and knees. One of a best feature of this machine is that it lets you adjust your chair setting to control the deepness of the squat/ press and modify your weight according to your preference.
HOW TO DO IT:
This exercise machine effects the big muscles in your leg, meaning you have to perform this leg exercise first among other lower body workouts at the gym.
On a lower body exercise day, perform 3 sets of 10 – 15 reps with a light to medium weight stack. You must start light and then add up the weight as you go along.
- Leg extension machine:
Main muscles effected by this exercise: quadriceps:
This is a type of a lever machine that effects the quadriceps. In this exercise, the knees are bended and the leg is extended by raising a padded bar and then the leg is restored to its original position. These type of exercises are great for isolating the front and side of the thighs.
How to do it:
While performing this exercise, the seat must be in a position so that your knees are adjusted directly in line with the axis of the machine. When at the top of the movement, pause and then squeeze your quads to add intensity.
While using a leg extension, adjusting your toes in different directions is an effective technique to touch different muscle groups.
- Seated leg curl:
Main muscles effected by this exercise: hamstrings
This exercise machine helps in toning and strengthening of the hamstrings as the major purpose of this exercise is to target the inner hamstring muscles of the leg. This machine is not only used to define the front and back of the leg, but is also very useful for strengthening quadriceps, glutes, knees and hamstrings. If you have stressed knees, the leg curl exercise helps in relieving the joints and muscles of this pain. This exercise is also a beneficial exercise which protects your joints from accidental injury during intense workout.
How to do it:
This exercise also requires you to focus on the position of your body and adjust your toes accordingly, just like the leg extension exercise. Try 3 sets of 8 to 10 reps adjusting your toes. Try to point your toes upward to engage your calf muscles. Try alternating set of leg curls by pointing to toes toward knees and or turned outwards like a ballet dancer, to reach more muscles.
- Squat cage for squats:
Main muscles effected: whole body, also quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes maximus in legs.
This machine is known by many names such as half rack, power cage, and squat rack. This type of strength training machine is used for free weight barbell exercises. The bar of this equipment must be stabilized as the machine itself does not have movement restrictions.
There are four vertical posts in this machine that include rails or parallel bar catches on each side. This provides amazing flexibility during work out. The effects of the power cage provide positive result of leg exercises, as it allows you to perform squats, deadlift and lunges along with other different type of exercises.
How to do it:
Start slow using a weight which feels comfortable to you. Don’t try to add more weight than you can easily bear as you can risk muscle of bone injury. Use proper squat form. Focus on your form, it helps you to protect your knees and lower back.
- Stationary bikes:
The muscles effected by this exercise: calves, hamstrings quadriceps and glutes.
Even though a stationary bike is not included in the heavy workout for body, it is still a best option to get warmed up to perform workout on heavier machines. Exercise machines are beginner friendly and they help the weak joints and knees to strengthen them so if you are starting to build up muscles and strength, it is a better choice to use a stationary bike.
You can adjust your speed and the resistance on the bike to perform the exercise according to your required level. The effects on an exercise bike not only enhance the muscles of your whole body, but also work greatly on your leg muscles such as calves, glutes and hamstrings.
How to do it:
The stationary bike allows you to adjust the resistance according to your needs, so that if you are a beginner, you can use low resistance and build it up as your legs get used to the routine. The seat allows you to sit and the handles provide support but you can use the bike in a standing position if you want. The speed can also be adjusted according to the need of the rider.
A stationary bike acts as a warm up for tougher exercises that include stretching and flexing of important muscles and joints of the legs.