Professional athletes and weightlifters understand the importance of working out on one area of the body at a time. For example, let’s say that you head down to the gym to work out on your legs. What are some of the leg exercises that you can do that will give you lean looking legs?
Well, this post will explain a few of the leg exercises that you can do to improve lower body growth and produce leaner looking legs.
The first exercise is called the Zercher Squat. This is an excellent exercise for all strength athletes. Some people have problems doing back squats and therefore this exercise helps to eliminate many of those problems. People who have weak hamstrings, a bad back, or bad hips may find it difficult to do back squats. The Zercher Squat is therefore a terrific alternative. This particular squat is relatively easy on the spine and will heavily recruit the posterior chain and upper back. The proper bar position will make it simple to do the squat correctly.
When you begin to do this squat there may be a feeling of being uncomfortable as you cradle the bar. Of course, you could just suck it up, but there are also a couple of solutions that may help. You could use a strongman axle, which is a thicker bar. This increased surface area of the bar will drastically reduce the discomfort. Also, you could choose a barbell pad which is similar to the pad that weaker people use when doing a back squat. Whichever way you decide to do this squat make sure that you include it into your program because it is very productive for anyone who wants leaner looking legs.
The next exercise for your legs is called the Bulgarian Split Squat. This single leg squat is perhaps one of the best single leg squats because it will only add a small amount of instability when you do the squat. It also provides you with the added feature of training using a lighter load. This type of lighter load training can be very beneficial when you want to give your spine a bit of a break from many of those disc-bruising poundages. Also, injuries are very unlikely and it is an easy squat to do correctly.
You should be aware however that the most common mistake with this type of a split squat is the front foot being incorrectly placed. Anyone who does this squat incorrectly will usually place the front of their foot too close to the rear. This could cause a potentially damaging knee displacement or discomfort issues. You will want to get your hamstrings more involved, which will alleviate any possible knee pain. You do this by making sure that the front of the foot is in a position that will keep the knee directly above your ankle.
You can use a shorter box or bench if you find that the movement is stretching your hip flexor too much. It is also recommended that you begin with a set of dumbbells until you master the set up. However, do not worry because it will not be too long before you are increasing your weights drastically. After you have mastered this squat with the dumbbells you can graduate to a barbell. You should do this, however using a squat rack which will make the exercise safer just in case you lose your balance. Another consideration would be to use the safety squat bar for this exercise.
The third exercise that you should include in your repertoire of leg exercises is the Donkey Calf Raise. There are many different calf type exercises, but this one is more beneficial because it will help maintain the gastrocnemius in a stretch position as it comes across the knee. Perhaps you have an image of Arnold Schwarzenegger with a bunch of women on his back while doing this exercise. While that would work it is probably better to use a training partner, a weight belt, or a machine.
No matter which way you do the Donkey Calf Raise there is one issue that you will notice while doing the exercise. The issue will be the load. Can your calves withstand the considerable weight load? If you are doing the exercise and it does not provide you with an adequate challenge then do not add extra weight, but do the calf raise using one leg at a time.
Finally, of all the leg exercises in this article the following exercise may be the most underrated movement of them all. The exercise is called the Glue-Ham Raise. Though this is an extremely excellent exercise, there are very few gyms that have the right equipment to perform this movement. This particular exercise requires good technique because of its difficulty. Many commercial gyms exclude this machine because of that fact.
What makes this exercise so effective is that it works your complete posterior area, including the hamstrings, calves, and back. As you progress with this hard-hitting movement you will drastically improve your dead-lifts, squats, and vertical jump. The key, as mentioned previously, is to pay strict attention to good technique. There are many excellent leg exercises and the above list contains just a few of them.