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Monday, October 24, 2016

6 Best Bodyweight Exercises for Stronger Legs

When most people hear “leg day," they immediately think of heavy weights and exercise machines. There's no doubt that a heavily loaded barbell or weight machine can build strong, muscular legs.





 Squats

The squat may be the single most important exercise that you can do.  because nailing proper squat form from the beginning is incredibly important. In order to do a squat, you’ll need access to barbells and a squat rack. There are machines at some gyms, like the Smith Machine, but experts recommend you avoid it.

Squats will build up your abs, lower back, glutes, hamstrings, quads — actually, just about everything. In fact, many in the lifting community call it “the king of exercises,” at least according to Stronglifts. But again, don’t overlook perfecting your form when starting out. You may even want to try just doing body squats to begin with, and then move on to the barbell.

Standing Calf Raises

Standing calf raises work to target the muscles of the calf, predominantly the outermost, larger muscles (ie: the muscles responsible for providing shape and definition of the calves.)

Calf Stretches

Calf stretches will elongate the calf muscles and make them appear slimmer. Choose a wall and support your body weight into the wall with your arms. Put one foot forward and bend the knee at 90 degrees while keeping the other foot back and straight. Push the back leg down by pushing the heels into the ground. Keep the calves of the back leg stretched like this for 30 seconds, then switch legs.

Running

Have you noticed that runners always have really slim legs? This is because endurance running is one of the best ways to get defined, slim calves. For best results, perform it for 30 minutes at a moderate pace, three times per week.

 Leg Press

Sit on the machine with your back and head against the padded support.

Place feet on the foot plate about hip-width apart, ensuring the heels are flat. The legs should form an angle of about 90 degrees at the knee with a little variation either way as long as the heels sit flat on the plate.

The knees should be in line with the feet and neither bowed inward nor outward.

Your bottom should not be raised from the seat platform. If it is, and the legs are at too sharp an angle, then you need to adjust the seat back until the correct position is enabled. You can recognize this poor position when the knees seem to be in front of your eyes and you feel cramped.

Grasp the assist handles.

Deadlift

If squats are the king of exercises, the deadlift would be the Duke — or the prince.

Deadlifts are exactly what they sound like: You’re essentially lifting as much dead weight as possible from the ground up. This is another exercise in which form is incredibly important. If you don’t get your stance right, you could end up hurting yourself. Stronglifts has a fantastic walk-through as to proper deadlift form, a. You’re best-off giving it a shot with a trainer or spotter at first, to ensure you get the process down.

Deadlifts will work your entire lower body, and your core, but can be pretty intense. So go in ready to be exhausted after a few reps.
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