Posts Tagged ‘legs’

Top 6 Leg Training Mistakes

Friday, July 24th, 2015

Don’t Waste Time Training Legs the Wrong Way!

Leg Training Mistakes
Your legs are the foundation of your physique. With their bulging tear drops, incision-like cuts, and shredded striations, prize leg development can win you a contest. Lagging leg development can also lose you a contest. Additionally, having strong legs makes it that much easier to develop a strong upper body. Here are 6 mistakes most athletes make when training their legs. These tips apply both to active bodybuilders and newbies, so pay attention!

The Top 6 Leg Training Mistakes

  1. Not Training Legs At All

    A lot of people completely avoid leg training. Why? Personally, I find it hard to understand. But there’s obviously a reason why they do; theories are they already have some preconceived notion that their legs are developed beyond what they are in actuality, or they see leg training as “hard”.

    It’s true that leg training can be painful, and you generally are sore afterwards, but many bodybuilders grow to love that soreness, as with other muscles. Avoiding leg training is a critical mistake, and you can’t build a house without a foundation.

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How to Deadlift

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

How to Deadlift

How to DeadliftDeadlifts are one of the primary, fundamental exercises for all serious weight training programs. Deadlifts work 100% of your legs and they require functional stability from 95% of the rest of the muscles on your body. Using proper form, deadlifts will help you get stronger, gain more muscle, and burn more calories than any other single exercise after the squat.

Deadlifts build lower back and hamstring strength, and they teach you to keep your lower back tight against a heavy load, which is critical to avoid injuries when lifting objects from the ground or floor. Unfortunately, this is also why deadlifts have gained a bad reputation of causing a variety of injuries, including spinal injuries and hernias.

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How to Squat

Monday, July 20th, 2015

How to Perform Squats

SquattingThere are many different lifts that a weightlifter can do to increase their strength, speed, and power. All kind of weightlifting is great for your body, but I prefer to not waste time in the gym lifting with tunnel vision, going from machine to machine and seeing little results from my hard work.

Instead, I would rather do 3-4 exercises with maximal intensity to wipe out my whole body in order to reap a maximal anabolic effect. The most well known and most dreaded of these exercises is the squat.

Rules to remember when squatting:

  • Keep the lower back straight and mostly flat; do not round your back!
  • Keep knees pointing out slightly, do not let them creep inwards as you push yourself up.
  • The bar should rest on upper trap muscles and the rear heads of the shoulders.
  • Push from your glutes (butt), not your knees; your hips should raise first and everything else should raise with them.
  • Fill your stomach with air before descending and keep it tight with your chest out while pushing up.
  • Push up with your eyes focused 30-45 degrees above normal eye level.
  • Try to keep your knees behind your toes to avoid injury.

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The Top 5 Best Hamstring Exercises

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Arnold Deadlifts

Serious fitness enthusiasts and athletes want to be able to lift thousands of pounds off the ground with minimal effort. It makes us feel good to be able to pick up anything we want. Especially when most guys in the world struggle to pick up even 100 lbs off the floor.

The number one way to make all these things happen? Train your hamstrings, lower back, and glutes (your bum) with complex free weight exercises.

Men and women alike should use these training tips. No amount of deadlifts are going to make a woman huge and bulky unless they TRY REALLY HARD to get huge and bulky on purpose. At the same time, no amount of body weight squats or lunges are going to get you big, strong, or conditioned. Train heavy and train hard, no matter who you are.

As I mentioned in my top 5 quad exercises post, your legs are the largest group of muscles in your body. By training your legs hard, you will be setting yourself up to gain the most progress compared to every other muscle group.

Strong hamstrings will allow you to:

  • Pick up anything heavy off the floor or ground.
  • Burn as many calories during training as you would when training quads.
  • Form the foundation of your body’s posterior strength chain.
  • Strengthen your lower back to protect from injury.

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The Top 5 Best Legs Exercises for Your Quads

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Arnold Loved SquattingSerious fitness enthusiasts and athletes want to be bigger, stronger, and leaner. The number one way to make that happen? Train your legs with complex free weight exercises.

Your legs are the largest group of muscle in your body. They are the foundation of your strength and power. Never will you be able to bench press 315 if you can’t squat 315 first.

By training your legs hard, you will be setting yourself up to gain the most progress compared to every other muscle group.

Arnold loved squatting, and look what happened to him. If you want to be Mr. Olympia, a famous Hollywood actor, and the governor of Alaska, you need to squat!

By training your legs, you will:

  • Lift the most weight of all muscle groups.
  • Burn the most calories of all muscle groups.
  • Form the foundation of your body’s strength chain.
  • Stimulate the highest growth hormone release through training.

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5 Squatting Mistakes

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

How NOT to Squat

Chick Squatting
8-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman said it best: “shut up and squat.” [1] After all, there’s nothing better for building lower body mass. Squats force you to use numerous stabilizing muscles and exhaust hamstrings, quads, and glutes.

To get the most out of squats, however, they must be executed with correct form. Avoiding these common squat mistakes will take both your performance and physique to the next level.

Mistake #1: Not Engaging Your Core

The core is the body’s center of gravity and is where movement originates. [2]If you have a weak core, it will be much harder to keep the weight stable. It also places you at a greater risk for hip or lower back injury.
To properly engage your core when performing a squat, concentrate on sucking your belly button towards your spine. A strong core will be able to maintain this posture throughout the exercise. If you have a weak core, using a weight belt around the waist protects the spine and keeps you from relaxing the core.

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Leg’s Day: A Workout Guide

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

Legs

Leg’s Day: A Workout Guide

Here is a brilliant leg training article from the team at JackedPack. If you don’t know, JackedPack is a membership subscription service that sends you a monthly box of the samples of the best in sports nutrition supplements.

You can subscribe for 50% off your first month by using the coupon code SWOLE at checkout.

One of the best feelings in the world is when someone says to you, “Oh my gosh, are those Giant Sequoias or are those your legs?” We hope that all JackedPack members and non-members alike are able to experience the satisfaction and benefits of leg strength and size, and that’s why we’ve dedicated this post to giving our lower extremities the attention they deserve. We want everybody to be squatting school buses and deadlifting beached wales back into the ocean. We have included a stellar legs day workout that incorporates some awesome exercises that are sure to have people singing Sir Mix-A-Lot every time you walk in a room.

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Prone to Box Jumps

Friday, May 11th, 2012

Here is a great plyometric exercise that you probably never do. It can be used in HIIT training or any other kind of conditioning workout. You can even use it at the end of a leg workout to really kill those wheels.

How to use this single exercise for a 20-25 minute HIIT workout:

  • Lie on your belly, on the floor, jump up to a standing position, then immediately jump up onto a box. Very simple.
  • Do 5 sets of 5 reps with 30-45 seconds rest between sets. Execute the reps as fast as possible with good form.
  • Take 3 minutes to rest and do some ab work – maybe some fold-ups or something.
  • Do another 5 sets of 5 reps.
  • Finish up with 3 more minutes of abs.

Stretch for 3-5 minutes.

HIIT workout complete!

Watch the Prone to Box Jumps video below.

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How to Get Skinny Legs for Women

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Editor’s Note: I nearly didn’t publish this guest post, due to the fact that I don’t believe any Project Swole readers want ‘skinny legs’. I am a firm believer in diet and heavy resistance training to lose fat and create hard, dense lower body muscle. But hey, if any of you female Swole readers want toothpick legs, here is some good advice.

Skinny Legs

As you go about your workout program, one goal that you might have set for yourself is to get skinny legs. For many people, especially women, losing weight in the thigh region does tend to be placed on high priority as this is that one place where females naturally tend to store higher amounts of body fat.

If you want to get skinny legs, there are a number of important things that you should be focused on doing with your workout routine. Implementing the correct strategies will ensure that you’re doing everything possible to reach your end goal.

Let’s look at the main points to consider to help you learn how to get skinny legs.

Avoid Resistance Based Cardio Exercise

The very first thing that you’ll want to make sure you’re doing in order to get skinny legs is avoiding any cardio exercise variations that are going to place a high level of resistance on the muscles. This would include activities such as biking at a high level or uphill walking.

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How to do Box Jumps

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011
Woman Box Jumps

How to do Box Jumps

Box jumps are a great exercise for your legs, and can be performed on just about any variable flat surface. They hit your posterior chain – calves, quads, glutes, and hamstrings – pretty hard.

Box jumps can be used for cardio workouts, neural activation training (NAT), high intensity resistance training (HIRT), and high intensity interval training (HIIT) circuits. They are often used in CrossFit WODs (Workout of the Day), and are a staple exercise in plyometric training. Plyometrics have a wide range of athletic and real sporting applications; they are used, for example, to increase jumping ability, leg strength, hip drive, and explosiveness.

Box jumps are a simple movement. They require you only to jump from one flat surface up onto another flat surface, then either step or jump back down, depending on the purpose of the exercise.

What if You Can’t Perform Box Jumps?

To excel at box jumps, you have to develop strength, flexibility, speed, power, coordination and balance. Without a basic foundation in these core exercise stills, you should not attempt a box jump, and whatever you do, don’t follow the box jump tips at eHow unless you never want to know how to do proper box jumps.

Be sure you are comfortable with bodyweight squats. If you can’t do bodyweight squats then you’ve got a real problem and should not be attempting box jumps.
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