Leg Press Versus Squat

What Is Leg Press?

Leg press is a type of exercise where you lie down on a bench with your legs extended out straight. You then raise them up until they are parallel to the ground before lowering them back down. This exercise is done in order to strengthen the muscles around the thighs and lower body area. It is also used for general health purposes such as keeping bones strong, preventing injuries and improving posture.

Why Should I Do Leg Press?

The leg press is one of the best exercises for strengthening the thigh muscles. It helps prevent injuries because it strengthens these muscles which can be injured during sports or other activities. It improves posture since it works on stabilizing the spine and helping keep your neck from rounding forward when sitting at a desk. If you have weak legs, leg press will help improve them significantly.

How Much Does It Hurt?

It hurts like hell! Even if you do not use weights, it still hurts just thinking about doing it. There is no way you could ever get through a set without getting sore afterwards. You would probably only be able to complete a few reps before feeling pain again. However, there are ways to lessen the impact of leg press so that you don’t feel as much pain and can finish all sets without any problems.

How Can I Make It Feel Less Painful?

There are several things that can help make the pain less of an issue during leg press. One of these is having good shoes with thick rubber to add extra cushioning to your feet. Another is using a bench which has a back support so that you do not feel pain in your lower back. A lot of people also like to place their feet higher up on the platform of the machine so that they don’t feel as much pain in their knees and shins.

How Should I Do This?

The leg press should be done using an explosive movement where you lower the weight at a slow pace and then push it upward quickly. You should not lock your knees when you extend them out at the top of each rep and pause for a brief moment before lowering them again. This is so that you can get more power into each rep before having to stop and lowering the weight. You should keep tension on your muscles at all times when doing this exercise and focus on squeezing the muscles at the top of each rep when you have completed it.

What Equipment Do I Need?

You will need access to a leg press machine in order to do this exercise. You will also need either weights or resistance bands in order to make it challenging.

Exercise Benefits

Burns a Lot of Calories

The main benefit of this exercise is that it burns a lot of calories. If weight loss is your goal then this is a good machine for you to use.

Simply put, the more weight you have the more calories you will burn. It may not be practical to strap on as much weight as possible all the time but you can certainly add extra plates when you feel the need to.

Tone Muscles

Using this exercise to tone your thighs muscles is very easy because of how it works. The more resistance you use, the more muscle you can build in your legs.

The less resistance you use, the more toned your muscles will become.

How Often & How Long?

You should start off by using light weights or no weight at all when you start working out if you haven’t used a leg press before. Once you have worked up a little bit more you should be able to push yourself a bit harder and use heavier weights. Aim to do three sets of ten reps for each leg with one minute rests between each set. Once you can do three sets of ten reps easily then it’s time to increase the weight you’re using or start doing four sets instead.

Sources & references used in this article:

Effects of technique variations on knee biomechanics during the squat and leg press by RF Escamilla, GS FLEISIG, N Zheng… – … & Science in …, 2001 – treinamentoesportivo.com

Comparative effects of deep versus shallow squat and leg-press training on vertical jumping ability and related factors by LW WEISS, AC FRX, LE WOOD… – The Journal of …, 2000 – journals.lww.com

The impact of back squat and leg-press exercises on maximal strength and speed-strength parameters by K Wirth, H Hartmann, A Sander… – The Journal of …, 2016 – cdn.journals.lww.com