Using the best leg exercise equipment for an amazing workout is one of the most important things you can do to maximize the benefits of your leg training and make your legs stronger, more agile, and more resilient. Having strong legs is also essential to a healthy back. Neglecting leg exercises can result in weaker stabilizing muscles, which could explain many of the aches and pains you may have in your back and core. Leg exercises tend to be compound movements that engage multiple muscle groups at once. This makes them great for squeezing your heart rate into the aerobic zone and burning serious calories.
Incorporating machine-based exercises into your leg training is also super helpful for beginners who need help learning to do an exercise and perfecting it before moving on to free weights. This is why gyms offer a variety of machines that can target different muscle groups and help you build the strength needed to do unsupported versions of exercises later on.
The leg press is one of the most popular leg machines in a gym and is probably the best overall option for building leg mass and strength. It involves lying down and pressing a plate upwards with your legs. The resistance is set by a lever that is attached to the plate. The best leg presses allow you to control the amount of pressure placed on your legs by adjusting the position of the footpads, and some offer the option to press vertically, horizontally, or at 45 degrees.
Another top choice for leg building is the squat machine. This is a great option for beginners because it provides more stability than doing squats without a spotter. It also allows you to train unilaterally for greater muscle development and helps you develop better balance and coordination. The hack squat machine can also be used to do other lower body movements such as Smith machine squats, lunges, deadlifts, and hip thrusts, making it an excellent choice for a complete leg day routine.
Leg extensions and hamstring curls are two other common leg machines. The former isolates the quads, while the latter targets the hamstrings and biceps. Both require seated movement and use a back rest and leg pads that secure the ankles to curl them back against resistance. The best leg extension machines allow you to select the angle of your ankle, and this model from Force USA is engineered to alleviate stress on the knees and other parts of the leg.
The calf raise machine is another favorite for isolating the calf muscles. It looks a bit like the leg press but is designed to give you a more comfortable and safer experience while targeting the same muscles. The calif raise can be a fantastic way to cap off your leg day and increase the strength of your smaller muscles, which will carry over to daily activities such as climbing stairs and walking. A great addition to your home gym!
Milena Estêvão is a YouTuber passionate about sharing her experiences (challenges, successes and motivations) in the fitness activities she is involved in.
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