2 Best Leg Machines at the Gym
If you want to build more mass and strength in your legs, a good leg press or hack squat machine is a great place to start. These machines work multiple lower body muscle groups, including the quads, hamstrings, glutes, and calves. They also provide a stable platform for you to push against and control the weight with your feet. That’s important for avoiding injury and getting the most out of your workout. While free weights like dumbbells and barbells can offer similar results, leg presses and hack squats are easier to learn and can help you get comfortable with lifting heavier weight before you transition to free-weight movements.
A high-quality leg press can be packed with useful safety features, such as multiple locking positions for racking the weight, buffers to stop the carriage from sliding below a certain point during the eccentric (lowering) part of the movement, and high-density cushioning to reduce stress on your knees. Many models can also be easily adjusted for your height, which is helpful for beginners or people with limited mobility. They also tend to have a smaller load capacity than free-weights, but this can be balanced out by choosing a model with a built-in rack or a bench that lets you store the plates under the bench.
Most leg presses offer a fixed or regulated range of motion, which is ideal for beginners and people with limited mobility. This prevents them from going too far and risking injury. This is in contrast to free-weights, which can be harder to control and can fall and hurt you or other people.
Many machines will also have a seat or backrest that can be adjusted, which is particularly useful for people with lower back problems or other injuries. Some even have a foot platform that locks in place for people who cannot stand while working out.
The final leg machine we recommend is the hamstring curl. This is a more isolation-based exercise, targeting only the muscles in your hamstrings. This is important because many people are naturally quad-dominant, meaning their quads are stronger than their hamstrings, so it’s crucial to incorporate exercises that target the hamstrings too.
In general, leg presses and smith machines are the best options for people looking to build muscle in their legs. They are safe, convenient, and can be used at home or at a gym. They can be easily combined with other leg exercises such as squats and deadlifts to build a complete workout that targets all of the major lower body muscles. The next step is to add in other exercises that work free weights and other machines to continue building your strength and muscularity.
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