The 6 Best Exercises for Stronger Legs
Your legs are the most important muscle group in your body! They are what keep you going when you run, walk, cycle, climb, jump rope, or swim. Without strong leg muscles, you are far more prone to skeletomuscular and joint injuries when engaged in athletic activities.
So you want to strengthen your legs, but you're not sure which exercises are the most effective? Here are the best exercises for stronger legs:
1. Lunges -- Lunges tie with Squats for "most effective leg exercise." Lunges engage more than just your quads (thigh muscles)--they also hit your glutes, your hamstrings, your hips, and even your calves. A properly performed Lunge will target all of your lower body muscles, and with the right weight/volume, you can see serious improvement in leg strength.
2. Squats-- Most people think of Squats as only useful for improving raw power, but that's not the case. Squats target all of your lower body muscles, encouraging even muscular development and improved overall strength. Depending on your weak areas (knees, back, hips, etc.), you can adjust the type of Squat to hit your lower body from the most effective angle.
3. Bulgarian Split Squat -- This exercise works the back leg as efficiently as it does the foreleg, making it sort of a "Lunge on steroids". The rear foot is placed on an elevated surface (bench or platform), which places most of the strain on the foreleg. However, the hamstrings and quads of both legs have to work overtime to rise from the Squat, leading to serious lower body muscle development.
4. Leg Press -- For those with lower back and knee problems, the Leg Press is an ideal solution. This movement helps to place most of the emphasis on the quads, reducing the strain on your joints. You can add a lot of weight to enhance your quad musculature, which will give you more strength for when you Squat. It's not the best of the movements, but it's a good one to add to your leg workout to focus on the quad muscles.
5. Romanian Deadlift -- The Romanian Deadlift focuses mostly on the hamstrings (the back of your legs), one of the most underrated and under-exercised muscles in the lower body. This is one of the most important exercises to do, as you can't have strong legs without paying attention to ALL the muscles in your legs!
6. Wall Squat -- The beauty of Wall Squats is that they are isometric, meaning there is no movement throughout the exercise. You simply hold the position, and your leg muscles quiver and tremble as they are engaged for 30 to 60 seconds. You'll feel the burn in no time, making this one of the best lower bodyexercises for those who want to enhance endurance as well as strength.
There are a lot of other very useful lower body exercises (Leg Curls, Leg Extensions, Pistol Squats, and so on), but these are the very best of the best! With these six exercises, you can get your legs in tip top shape in no time.
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