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Sunday, July 21, 2019

8 Exercises to build massive legs

“Did you skip leg day, bro?” Well, you at least thought about it. We all have. But focus on the upper-mirror muscles alone and your spaghetti legs will not only attract some less than welcoming looks during your next workout, but it’ll also leave your single-digit body fat plans stuck in neutral. However, deploy the right below-the-belt moves and you’ll pump blood to your largest muscles, burning up the calories and toning your body from shoulders to calves. That’s right, the route to a six-pack is from below.



So which moves make leg day count the most? Below is PT Ollie Frost’s best lower-body moves that will guarantee maximum muscle growth in the least amount of time. RIP skinny jeans.

Overhead squat




Think you’re a true man? You will be after a few reps of this. An overhead squat will push the limits of your flexibility, stability, balance and strength while also highlighting any weaknesses in your erector spinae, adductors and rhomboids (your hips, essentially) that you may need to work on with the next exercise on this list.

Leg Press




 First, let’s talk about what many trainers hate about the leg press: It can cause lower-back injury when done incorrectly. And when guys load every last plate in the gym on the sled and try to half-ass a few reps out, with their lower back disengaging from the pad on every rep in part due to woefully inflexible hamstrings and glutes, that’s about as incorrect as you can get. It’s true that it’s one of the most abused exercises in the gym — probably because you can feel like a big shot and handle much more weight than you can on a squat — but used carefully, the leg press can be very beneficial. And just as important, it helps provide variety in what might otherwise be a very squat-centric leg program

Main Areas Targeted: Quadriceps (emphasized with feet lower on platform and closer together), glutes and hamstrings (emphasized with feet higher and wider on platform)

Step-Up




This is arguably one of the more functional exercises on this list. After all, you probably walk up stairs on a fairly regular basis, right? Being a unilateral exercise, it also means a stronger leg can’t compensate for a weaker one, with each leg taking its turn absorbing the full brunt of the motion.

Deadlift




Because you can’t beat the classics. Not only will this lower-body staple build significant size in your legs, but it'll also build a strong posterior chain that will help improve body posture and add inches to your height.

Walking Lunge






Lunges come in more varieties than Taylor Swift breakup songs. You can do stationary lunges in any direction — front, side, backward or any point in between — and have a damn fine exercise on your hands. But walking lunges ultimately made our list because a) they’re slightly more functional since you continually move forward instead of standing still and b) they provide an excellent finisher to any leg workout. No less than eight-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman used to take a loaded barbell outside and lunge through the Metroflex Gym parking lot in the Texas heat to cap his leg day, which with thighs as big as 36 inches around in his heyday was a sight to behold.

Hack Squat




While the barbell version of the hack squat — picking up a barbell placed behind you — is perfectly acceptable, especially for those training at home, the typical machine-based hack squat you find at most gyms is our choice here. That’s the one that’s plate-loaded and angles your body slightly backward. Within the confines of the machine, you’ll find a bit more safety than you would with the free-weight squat, which becomes more crucial as you tire during a workout. That means hacks are a great mid-workout option, serving as a bridge between squatting and other moves such as the leg press and lunge.

Bulgarian Split Squat




Did Bulgarian strength athletes really use this movement as a training cornerstone? The myths may not match the reality, but the name has stuck to what is, all in all, a pretty solid exercise. That is, if you tweak the common variation (shown here) as proposed by well-known Canadian strength coach Charles Poliquin. He contends that over-elevating the back leg — putting it on a flat bench or even higher — reduces the stability of the front leg, thus limiting your strength potential and putting you at risk for injury while also unnecessarily stressing the spine. His solution? The exercise that lands at No. 5 on our list, a split squat in which you elevate the back leg only 6 inches from the floor.



Barbell squat



How could we leave this one out? The barbell squat, the classic compound cornerstone of all leg moves hikes up your muscle-building T-levels through targeting your larger muscle fibres. To put it simply: any decent leg day deserves this move.
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