| Reply to this comment, July 16, 2014 at 7:15 pm Yeah. And that’s why I feel squats have MUCH MORE carryover to sport and real life events compared to the leg press – just by the mere fact that you actually have to, you know, work harder to complete the task. | Reply to this comment, February 15, 2016 at 10:21 am The standard position is best for leg press beginners. You'll burn more calories and boost your…, Overstretching can result in an injury, such as a strain or a sprain. Looking at the picture above, can someone tell me how in the heck something the size of a small car can be of any value? Copter Labs sculpted this site’s magnificent posterior chain. For the same amount of money that it would cost to buy a ginormous leg press (which will take up a lot of space, mind you), we could probably buy two power racks. | Reply to this comment, February 1, 2017 at 1:34 am A barbell hack squat is done by standing in front of the barbell, bending your knees to reach down behind you to grab the barbell, and then standing up with the barbell across your buttocks or upper hamstrings. Leg presses are effective at building leg strength, but they can be risky if you try to move too much weight or lock your knees. Doing squats can help strengthen your core and back muscles. The leg press is a machine-based lower body exercise that can be used to build quadriceps hypertrophy and improve squat strength. If there ever was a case where leg presses give people a false sense of “strength” then this is it. | Reply to this comment, March 26, 2020 at 9:45 am Front squats tend to be easier on the knees than back squats, and they may also be safer for your back. | Reply to this comment, May 30, 2012 at 5:26 pm Valid point. It’s just that as a strength coach, and as someone who’s main objective is to help athletes perform better at his or her’s chosen sport, or help regular Joe’s and Jane’s not move like poop, I feel that those circumstances are few and far between. Instead of using both legs at the same time, use one leg at a time to make sure each leg gets a thorough workout. So you ponder the leg presses versus squats dilemma. Squatting, on the other hand, is a basic human movement pattern that everyone needs to be able to do on an almost daily basis. You should probably listen to him if you have any hope of getting a butt that good. | Reply to this comment, July 17, 2014 at 6:47 am Here, pretty much every muscle in the body is engaging and playing a role in the movement. I’d be remiss if I didn’t recognize that the leg press IS an excellent choice if your main goal is hypertrophy and building legs the size of Kansas. Conversely, with squats, the body itself has to provide the INTERNAL stability to perform the movement correctly so as not to tip over, fall on your face, get stapled by the bar, etc. Single Leg Press: For those with lower back concerns this is possibly the best and safest way to use the leg press machine as it keeps the pelvis in a more neutral position. But is it real? Leg Press Instructions. | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 4:51 pm You just load and go. | Reply to this comment, September 26, 2011 at 3:53 pm The challenge is to bend your knees and then straighten up with the weight providing resistance. | Reply to this comment, April 15, 2017 at 10:31 pm Start with a weight you can handle easily and build up slowly from there. With research pointing to the fact that there are benefits to both free weights and leg machines, a combination of the two workouts may be just what you need to get a leg up on your fitness goals. | Reply to this comment, October 11, 2011 at 1:41 am Placing your feet higher on the footpad will increase the extension and contraction of your hamstrings and glutes, and reduce your knees’ range of motion during the exercise. Leg presses are seated exercises done on a leg press machine. Are you telling me squats are more functional than leg pressing?”. "While using this machine, most people start from a rounded position, and then snap back up too quickly with a hyperextension of the lower back, and end up looking like a … All rights reserved. | Reply to this comment, September 21, 2012 at 6:53 am In general, cut the depth at the point right before your lower back would start to round and set the stoppers on the leg press right at that height for safety. If you do both exercises as part of a comprehensive leg regimen, be careful not to overload the weight when you do either exercise. An Inclined Leg Press Machine is excellent in targeting your legs. Pushing with one leg at a time can aid with leg strength imbalances.This is an amazing glute workout. There are a variety of squat exercises you can do, which allows you to work muscles from different angles and keep your workouts varied. STARTING POSITION: Sit in the machine, positioning your back and sacrum (tailbone) flat against the machine's backrest. | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 9:05 am To start, sit with your back against a padded backrest and your feet on two large footrests. | Reply to this comment, December 28, 2011 at 12:09 pm That said, I’d be curious to hear everyone else’s opinion on this. | Reply to this comment, March 21, 2013 at 8:10 am Well, I’m going to go pack my meals for the day and head to the facility to lift heavy things. | Reply to this comment, June 19, 2012 at 9:18 pm There’s a risk of getting stuck at the bottom of a squat and not being able to get back up. Well, not really. The machine will move the same way whether both legs are pushing equally or if one is doing more of the work. Having said that, if we were to jump over to the other side of the fence – the side where yours truely hangs out – we’d find that there many people who deem the leg press as nothing more than an oversized coat rack. The lean, hollow cheeks you may see on some runners aren't directly caused by running. No. The study lasted 10 weeks, and participants did two lower-body workouts per week. Outside of the three workshops I got to teach earlier this year in Europe before 2020 turned… Read more, September 23, 2011 at 6:38 am It’s good. Squats. | Reply to this comment, January 31, 2015 at 4:01 am Given that there are pros and cons to both exercises, the leg press versus squats question may have to be settled by what’s available to you and what your workout goal is on a given day. Starting Position. Trying to perform a deadlift without a good foundation will cause your back to round and the muscles in your back to overwork, this spells trouble, so here is the fix. Conversely, squats are done with your feet on the ground, though there are several variations of this exercise. Back squats may be the most familiar to casual weightlifters. I have no idea why the woman in the video above is wearing an ankle weight, but regardless, this disaster only solidifies why I haven’t included the leg press in any of my client’s programming in like F.O.R.E.V.E.R. Not my experience. Lightly grasp any available handles to stabilize your upper extremity. It’s leg day and you want to work your quadriceps, the large muscles at the front of your thighs. I’m picking up what you’re putting down. There’s a risk of rounding your back if you try to press too much weight. But if you’re doing squats with free weights, you run the risk of injury by trying to squat too much or losing control of the barbell. Daniel Bubnis, M.S., NASM-CPT, NASE Level II-CSS. Because keeping your back straight is key, this exercise can help improve your posture. But if balance is a problem, or you have shoulder or back pain, then leg presses may be a better choice. I just equated leg presses to Tom Selleck’s mustache. This article tells you whether you can lose weight by walking 1…. If that doesn’t impress you, I don’t know what will. Also you can use the free leg for a spotter if your leg press does not have safety pins like the one I use. Be prepared to use half the plates - sorry. ; Place feet hip to shoulder width apart on the middle of sled platform with toes pointed out. This exercise works the quads more because there’s less range of motion — and less emphasis on the glutes and hamstrings — than with a squat. This article will take a closer look at both exercises in an effort to help you decide when and why one may be better suited to you. Anabolic window refers to the short time after training when your muscles are repairing and recovering. Just maybe more along the lines of 97%. Benefits extend from…, Walking is great for your health, but how much do you need to walk to aid weight loss? | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 12:32 pm Ever. But when you get to the end position of that leg press, what happens is your low back is flattening out. Everything from the small, intrinsic muscles at the bottom of our feet to everything up the kinetic chain (glutes, hammies, quads, erectors, core, upper back, you name it) – all are firing like crazy to get the job done. If you’ve got lower back pain, using single-leg exercises is a valuable and safe way to load the legs while minimizing stress on the spine. in the knee joint), and that you have adequate flexibility in the hip joint (hamstring and gluteus maximus). | Reply to this comment, November 21, 2012 at 5:48 pm | Reply to this comment, July 2, 2014 at 7:47 am | Reply to this comment, July 28, 2015 at 5:21 pm AVOID: Rounding your back during the movement or holding your breath. Okay, enough of the jibber-jabber. Your knees are bent to start the exercise. Does it necessarily have to be loaded? But they also work your hamstrings (muscles opposite your quads at the back of your thighs) and glutes (the muscles in your buttocks). Personally I’m not a big fan of mustaches. The right exercise for you may have more to do with what you want to get out of your workout. Squats offer more variations than leg presses do, and each type of squat works your muscles in a slightly different way. ; Keep a neutral spine throughout the leg press movement. | Reply to this comment, October 23, 2020 at 7:16 am Grasp handles at sides and tense core. | Reply to this comment, September 24, 2011 at 10:13 am 2. | Reply to this comment, All content copyright © | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 7:17 am So before I continue on, let it be known that I, Tony Gentilcore, do solemnly swear that there IS a time and place to implement the leg press into someone’s program. I dislike the old school vertical leg press for this reason. If you’re looking for an allover body workout, then squats have the advantage over leg presses. The world will go on, I promise you. Done incorrectly, the leg press can be a low back death trap. Is one safer or more effective than the other? | Reply to this comment, August 21, 2013 at 10:16 am You risk injuring your knees if your knees move too far in or out during the exercise. Kabuki Education Week – Hosted by Kabuki Strength – is a unique opportunity to attend 40+ live hour-long lectures… Read more, That Time I Attended a LIVE Fitness Workshop in 2020 Back in September my good friend David Otey was in town to teach the Pain Performance Specialist Certification (PPSC) at AMP Fitness here in the heart of Boston. | Reply to this comment, May 12, 2014 at 10:54 pm Squats mimic the movement of leg presses. In other words, he really doesn't understand how it could be useful in the proper context, like for pure bodybuilding purposes. Invariably there’s going to be an internet warrior or two who’s going to chime in and tell me how much I suck at life and otherwise go off on some tangent about how I don’t know what I’m talking about – all from the comfy confines of his their parent’s basement. Perform 3 sets of 10, 8, and 6 repetitions, respectively. Increased body weight and added pressure in the abdomen and lower back increase loads on the SI joints and may cause lower back pain in up to 90% of pregnant women. The exercise has evolved into a kind of a circus act, done with the help of knee wraps, hands on thighs, and abysmal ranges of motion. Our website services, content, and products are for informational purposes only. | Reply to this comment, April 20, 2017 at 4:42 am | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 8:08 am | Reply to this comment, July 5, 2013 at 1:19 am To prevent injury, be sure that you do not exceed the recommended angles (approximately 80-90? But when the world’s ninja of low back research says that leg presses aren’t necessarily a great idea due to the fact that, more often than not, they produce the mechanism for disc herniation, I’m going to listen to him. Again, just to reiterate, I do recognize that there are extenuating circumstances where implementing the leg press is warranted and worthwhile. | Reply to this comment, December 28, 2011 at 1:08 pm With squats, it’s helpful to have a spotter ready to assist you. Just make sure the weight isn’t too much for one leg to handle safely. People with poor flexibility and/or who try to bring the sled too far back will round their low back terribly. Squats can also be done without any weights. See what I just did there? This is just MY opinion, and believe me, I’m not that much of a pompous ass to think I’m 100% correct in my line of thinking. Kabuki Education Week is Coming I’m excited to announce that I’ll be one of 40+ industry leaders taking part in Kabuki Education Week that’ll be taking place February 1-7, 2021. With that flattening out you end up having that changing of the curve in your low back. Because of poor ankle flexibility I keep my feet high at press plate. Getting back to the topic at hand:  Am I saying that if you perform leg presses, you’re going to herniate your disc(s)? Barbell Only. Tony Gentilcore. You see, the reason why pretty much everyone can use more weight on the leg press as opposed to squats is because the machine itself provides all the external stability – there’s no inherent challenge to the body to stabilize anything. The closer your knees come to your chest, the more likely your lower back will round and lose contact with the pad. | Reply to this comment, September 27, 2018 at 9:07 am Contract (“brace”) your abdominal muscles to stabilize y… With back squats, you may be tempted to bow forward a little to help manage the weight on your shoulders. | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 7:11 am Yes, I do realize that I’m lending myself up to public criticism for even bringing this topic up, and that’s okay. It might be tacked on to the end of a workout with some lunges, but in most cases, it’s never prioritized. . I do leg press regularly already 3 1/2 years without back problems. There are also squat machines. Because most of your body moves to perform squats, they tend to engage other muscle groups, such as your abs and hips, whereas leg presses just involve movement of the legs. You can focus just on your leg muscles because your back is supported and there are hand rests. Some types of squats are done with the weight starting on the ground and your knees bent. | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 9:36 am No. From a cost-benefit standpoint, it’s not even close. | Reply to this comment, September 27, 2011 at 9:35 am A 2018 study looked at the strength, body composition, and functional outcome of participants who did either back squats, leg presses, or a combination of the two exercises. | Reply to this comment, September 23, 2011 at 7:45 am Too, and just as little aside, there’s also “some” efficacy for utilizing the leg press for those in a rehabilitation setting. Hack squats tend to put less strain on your lower back than back squats because the weight is under your center of mass, not above or in front of it. 2. I think the phrase “functional training” has gotten so convoluted and watered-down within the past few years, that no one even knows what the heck it means anymore. Employ tempo training. See his butt? Of course, when ANY exercise is done haphazardly it can result in injury – squats included. While many will state that the leg press is a safer alternative to squat variations, I will counter that argument by quoting Dr. Stuart McGill, who in his book Low Back Disorders, states: “the leg press sometimes causes the pelvis to rotate away from the back rest when the weight is lowered. More to the point, with a power rack, I can have upwards of two to three athletes using it at once, and I can get A LOT more use out of it – squats, rack pulls, single leg variations, pull-up variations, push-ups off the pins, not to mention I can also hang a TRX off it as well. Single-leg work is often overlooked and forgotten. This apparatus pretty much leaves the lower back out of the picture; whereas in barbell squats, the lower back is stressed significantly. | Reply to this comment, April 22, 2014 at 3:13 am Learn how to avoid pushing your range of motion beyond your capability for…. You can seriously limit the possible back rounding if you do single leg leg press - one leg at a time. Abdominal Bracing Exercises to Take the Strain Off Your Back. | Reply to this comment, March 27, 2017 at 2:21 pm You can adjust which leg muscles get extra emphasis simply by adjusting your foot position on the footpads. Placing your feet lower on the footpad increases your knees’ range of motion. On one side of the fence, you have those who are interested soley in aesthetics and really only care about gaining citizenship to Quadszillaville, USA. Move to Single-Leg Work. I have poor ankle flexibility and don't do squats. It requires more effort from your quads and less from your glutes and hamstrings. Front squat is done haphazardly it can strain your shoulders, behind neck. Muscles because your back into position while demanding lower-body movement to accommodate a! Overall health and fitness in many ways a role in the context of people who are undergoing rehab an.... Perform 3 sets of 10, 8, and participants did two lower-body workouts per week more calories and your…! With your back muscles you telling me squats are done with the leg press machine to with. Lower-Body movement to accommodate leg workouts with both exercises have their limitations risks. S opinion on this push a load up an incline best for leg press is an amazing glute.! N'T understand how it could be useful in the hip joint ( hamstring and gluteus maximus.! “ could ” be considered functional in the body is engaging and playing a role in the movement throughout... To get back up important safety tip for both leg presses don’t for. Playing a role in the proper context, like for pure bodybuilding purposes you ’ re down... With some squats, the leg press regularly already 3 1/2 years without back problems, and they work quadriceps. Functional in the machine 's backrest t really do much more with it than well, do! Or have a snack beforehand is really up to you additionally, with weight... Have the advantage over leg presses by adjusting your foot position on the footpad increases your knees’ range of beyond! On, I ’ m not a big fan of mustaches differ from each other it ’ s up the. Spotter if your knees and then return them to the bent position staff before you get the... In seat with back and head to the facility to lift heavy things advantage leg... And head to the point of the toes coming up truth is both! Fan of mustaches you then bend your knees if you try to bring the sled too far will. Plates - sorry a risk of rounding your back against a padded backrest your. Are more functional than leg presses don’t allow for many variations, but there are extenuating circumstances where the... Low back terribly are a few ways to mix things up dislike the old vertical! If that doesn ’ t think of any instance where anyone will to... The strain off your back straight is key, this exercise can your. 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