Leg Extension to Boost The Quadriceps
Why make the leg extension?
For Bodybuilders, the leg extension to the machine is one of the best exercises to develop and especially to give definition to the anterior part of the thigh (quadriceps). This exercise is also very important in rehabilitation, especially with light loads working in full amplitude and maintaining the contraction for several seconds.
Unlike other exercises, it is a movement that only solicits a single articulation ( monoarticular ) and that emphasizes only the quadriceps. You will not have any assistance here from your hips, buttocks or ischios. By targeting the quadriceps this way, it allows you to get a very high degree of localized intensity (fatal burn). Because your bust is sustained, this exercise lends itself easily to unilateral work . By working one leg at a time, you can bring each quadriceps to total exhaustion.
How to make the extension leg?
- Sitting on the machine, both thighs well in contact with the seat. Place the lower part of the shins against the sleeves so that your knees form an angle of 90 ° or more.
- The back is straight or slightly leaning back and resting against the backrest. Grasp the handles on each side of the seat to ensure your stability.
- Inhale deeply and exhale when extending the legs. Hold the contraction 1 or 2 seconds.
- Inspire by slowly bringing the shins practically up to the vertical. Repeat the movement, keeping the tension in the muscles all the time.
- For balanced development, keep the toes pointing directly forward or slightly outward.
- If you have difficulty stretching your legs completely, lean as far back as possible, especially if the seat of the machine is tilted.
5 Training Tips
- Because the thighs are immobile during this exercise, there is a lot of pressure at the knees, which can be dangerous. To reduce this pressure, do not let the shins go too far back under the thighs (knee angle 90 ° or less) at the bottom of the movement.
- The full extension of the knees is important to achieve maximum contraction of the vastus medialis and vastus externus. Their strength is vital to keep the kneecap in place.
- Do not take too heavy loads: they prevent full stretching of the legs and create excessive stress in the knee joint.
- Stiff ischios can bother you to fully stretch your legs. In this case, lean as far back as possible to give a little slack to these muscles. Also choose a machine with a flat, non-inclined seat, which will reduce the tension on the ischios.
- To vary and obtain a somewhat stronger contraction of the vastus medialis, turn the tip of the feet inwards by stretching the legs completely. To put more emphasis on the vastus externus, turn them outward.
What muscles are involved?
A single muscle is involved in the extension leg: the quadriceps , which is composed of four distinct bundles having the same action. The anterior right, which is a relatively long muscle stretched in the middle of the thigh. A little smaller, but powerful, the crural muscle is located under the anterior right half-way up the thigh. The vastus medialis and externus are located respectively on the inner and outer sides of the thigh. These four muscles are inserted by a common tendon on the patella, itself fixed on the tibia.