Not to mention squats, lunges, split squats, leg press, and other compound lifts work your quads better. Leg Extensions: Good or Bad? The rectus femoris is a muscle in the quadriceps that also flexes the hip – making it a bit more complicated than just moving your knee. Air squats are one of my favorites now as I get a good leg workout along with continued cardiovascular conditioning. - BUILD MUSCLE & STRENGTH! I do not recommend that exercise. You sit on the machine with a weighted pad on top of your lower legs. Strength coaches say they will cause your knees to explode and cripple you. Warm-up Exercise Leg Extensions. The knee was not designed to have horizontal force applied to it. But if you're experiencing leg press knee pain while lifting, it might be time to check your technique. Leg extensions are done on a leg extension machine. If that were the case, how would we be able to poop? I’m obviously kidding, well partially, but the point I’m getting at is the leg extension has always been innocent. Time and place, as with most exercises. Watch out not to extend your legs fully straight. Leg extensions aren't necessarily bad. The leg extension has been given a bad rap by doctors who say it destroys the knees. Doctors usually advise against machine leg extensions when someone has knee problems, but seated leg extensions are totally safe. “Leg extensions are bad because they place too much stress on your knees.” This statement, or some iteration of it, is a common argument against the use of leg extensions, but how are the purveyors of this sentiment defining “stress” in this scenario? During Leg Extensions, the resistance is located at the shins, just above the feet. The key muscles you’ll use in a leg extension are, of course, the quadriceps.They extend the knee, but they’re also essential for movement in the hips. 5. Raise the weight with your legs until they are pointing straight out in … Leg presses don’t allow for many variations, but there are a few ways to mix things up. You can wear an elastic band on the thighs to make the exercise more challenging. Bodybuilders love them for quad building. Yes, leg extensions can cause knee pain. Without a doubt, the leg extension debate is one of the most heated in the fitness industry today. "does leg extension exercise bad for knees ? Leg Extensions: Good or Bad? I recommend doing one or two warm-up sets of leg extensions before starting any other leg exercise. Always keep a slight bend in your knees. Whether this is a good or bad exercise for you depends on how you do the exercise and the status of your back. However, driving your knees forward with Front Squats, High Bar Back Squats, Forward Lunges, Hack Squats do the same thing to some degree, as well. So I recently read an online article on Men's Health about machines that are more harmful than helpful. They also work the muscles less well than a compound exercise. Then you use your … Update: The leg extension, along with hack and sissy squats, are the best exercises to develop the rectus femoris, the V-shaped two-headed muscle on the upper middle portion of the front thigh.The single-joint action at the knee allows this muscle to actively lengthen and shorten, leading to more intense contractions impossible through compound exercises like the squat or leg press. In natural motions, such as squats and lunges, there is very shearing force on the knee. Not going light will chop up the meniscus at lock out and cause tracking issues etc.. With that said, Leg Extensions … Repeat this movement several times and do the same number of reps for each leg. They are usually performed using a leg-extension machine, where you sit on a chair and lift a weight bar using your quadriceps muscle. The only time I completely agree that Leg Extensions are bad, is when ego lifting takes over rational, and people start loading up more weight than what can be handled. I’m very excited to bring you today’s interview revealing the TRUTH About Leg Extensions with Fitness Pro, National Presenter and Author of 7 fitness books: Brad Schoenfeld. Like almost all exercises that get labelled as ‘bad,’ they aren’t really bad. They then justify the leg curl, defending it as the best way to work the hamstrings, as if it possessed none of the issues associated with the leg extension. So, what are the worst exercise for your knees? Never squat 200 - 300 pounds without doing some warm-up sets first. I recently did an interview with my friend and colleague, Nick Tumminello about the pros and cons of the leg extension. But are leg extensions really bad? Squats, leg extensions, hamstring curls & calf raises. Answered by Dr. Peter Ihle: It depends on what U: … Squats were supposed to be bad for the knees. One word of caution though. It's true that there is more sheer force in the patellofemoral joint, and that it can aggravate issues with patella tracking, but it has clinical use. The bottom part of the Leg Extension is where the Shear Force is the greatest. Many people think that squatting is bad for your knees. Yes, leg extensions are bad for your knee and ACL. 2 warm-up sets of 40 reps, 4 sets of 30 reps. Never start a 400 pound leg press without warming up with lighter weights first. Functional Benefits of the Lying Leg Curl and Seated Hip Adduction Exercise. Are Lower Back Extension Machines Good or Bad?. This results into ripped muscles and tendons. Most gyms have some type of back extension equipment, be it a Roman chair or a larger machine with attached weight stack. That's typically my leg day. For clarity of communication, it is important to first define exactly what “functional training” is—and what it is not—when discussing the functional benefits of given exercises, such as the lying leg … I imagine they don’t know. Leg extensions are often slammed as being “bad for your knees” or “useless for building muscle.” While they certainly have the potential to be bad for your knees if they’re not done properly, they’re also a very useful way to develop your quads. They are by no means a mass builder. Strong legs and glutes are key to athletic performance. Stick to quad exercises where you also move through your hips. The leg extension is like that kid in High School who sits in … Instead, the problem is usually in application. Like a really high bridge that’ll cripple them out of the industry so they can’t regurgitate bad advice anymore. Squatting is a very natural movement pattern that we must all be able to do. I may knock out two or three sets of leg extensions for 15-20 repetitions and then immediately go to either the leg press or the smith machine to knock out leg presses or light squats. On the contrary leg extensions are actually one of the safer exercises you can do if you have bad knees. Are Leg Extensions a Viable Exercise? There is rarely such a thing as a bad exercise. Even outside of rehab, many people will be able to … That led to the use of leg extension machines for rehabilitating knee injuries, and trainees in popular gyms knocked out set after set of heavy leg extensions. For example, no studies have documented people tearing ligaments while doing leg extensions, and while knee pain is a risk with all lower body activities, it can be avoided on leg extensions by limiting the motion to the very last 20 degrees of knee extension. The Sissy Squat; Very Heavy Leg Extensions; You may have never heard of Sissy squats, and I’m glad you haven’t. Stress can be calculated by dividing force by area. Some rightfully disdain leg extensions since they can harm the knees. There's probably some truth to both, and obviously it depends on your body, and your goals. They don't build as much mass as squats, but squats can be extremely painful if you have bad knees. These are done by using a leg extension machine and sitting in the seat with your feet hooked under the padded lever. Keep the weight fairly light and complete 20 to 30 slow, controlled reps. Leg extensions as noted above are great if you go light and high rep and use them to simply bring out the quads and tighten the knee from the front. Meaning, how they tend to be done is problematic. Leg extensions are arguably one of the most popular leg exercises for strengthening the quadriceps (thigh) muscle. I think squats can be worst for your knees if done with bad form - locking out & bouncing the weight at the top & bottom, relying on momentum and not having a stable base. I was surprised to see that the Leg Extension machine was one of the ones listed, especially since it's one of the go-to leg exercises for most people. Leg extensions were supposed to be good for the knees. This exercise alone saved me from having diminutive legs on stage for my first show. and what machines to avoid in gym as not to increase knee pain ?" FULL 12 WEEK PUSH, PULL, LEGS PROGRAM! Please read and follow the rules of every single exercise you do, and if you are still not certain, ask a Professional for help. Actually, no. The crazy thing about the above answer is that Brad says that leg extensions are clearly dangerous, as the research shows, that they caused increased shear forces at the knee, an increased ACL strain and, are not as safe as closed chain exercises but, if you have a healthy joint and do them properly he sees no “increased risk”. One-leg leg press. 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