The words ‘Leg Day’, brings a lot of terrible memories of nausea and extreme pain in your legs that either leave you semi-paralyzed for a day or lead to scary muscular cramps that keep you up all night. The feeling that you get after an intense day of Leg workouts is universal and is felt by every athlete and gym goer after performing some of the best leg exercise for men. While there are many ways to reduce the discomfort, one thing is for sure- Without some amount of pain, there will be no gain.
Your legs are the most neglected muscle group in your entire body. While exercising in the gym or elsewhere, many men like you tend to focus more on the upper body and core muscle strength training rather than simultaneously focusing on their leg muscles as well. The result? Your core upper body strength increases in terms of size, strength and shape, whereas your lower body resembles that of a woman. Neglecting leg exercise for men can lead to you having a very odd overall shape.
The top 7 reasons why leg exercise for men is important:
- You burn a lot of calories.
- You build more muscle strength.
- Your legs won’t look like chicken.
- You’ll be able to lift more weights.
- You’ll reduce the chances of muscle injury and cramps.
- You’ll have lower body strength.
- You’ll be able to walk, run and bike harder.
The major muscles in your leg targeted during some of the best leg exercises for men:
Before getting into the ultimate guide, it’s important for you to understand the major muscles in your legs that are going to be the main focus of the group of exercises.
The front portion of the thigh comprises of four main muscles, togetherly called the ‘quadriceps’. There are mainly four heads of ‘quadriceps’:
- The Rectus Femoris
- The Vastus Lateralis
- The Vastus Medialis and
- The Vastus Intermedius
The back of your leg is mainly dominated by three muscles that control and contract the hamstring tendons:
- The Semimembranosus
- The Semitendinosus
- The Biceps Femoris
The last group of muscles in your leg forms the calf of your legs:
- The gastrocnemius and
- The soleus
The best leg exercises for men mostly focuses on these three groups of muscles that togetherly form your legs. Your gym trainer or an experienced person would tell you how important it is to focus on every single one of these muscle groups in order to achieve the desired shape and size you have always wanted to flaunt.
However, there are certain precautions that you must take, and certain mistakes you must avoid making if you wish to see the changes in your legs. Some of the most common mistakes that men make when doing any of the best leg exercises for men are:
- Bad squatting posture:
A bad squatting posture can greatly affect the way your muscles are being built up. A bad posture can suck up most of your energy and leave you with zero to minimal results in terms of strength or shape of your legs.
- Performing the wrong leg exercises:
Without proper guidance and help, chances are you may have been using an equipment wrongly or may have been doing the sets to an exercise wrong. Performing the wrong leg exercise would not only lead zero results but will only tire you more along with the added risk of exercise injury.
- Going Heavy:
The most common mistake you or any other gym goer makes is going too heavy too soon. This mistake will cost you heavy as this will stunt the growth of all the muscle groups in your body. Heavier weight training also requires more time for recovery, which only means you cannot take up heavy weight training without possibly over training.
The 5 best leg exercises for men:
As with every muscle group of your body, there are a ton of exercises you can do to tone up and shape up your leg muscle groups as well. However, there are only a handful of good exercises you can perform correctly that will yield you the kind of result you wish to see. The following list has been handcrafted with care, so that you can make the most of your leg days, with guaranteed results:
- Front Squat:
Front Squats mainly focus on building mass in your legs and makes them look leaner and more stronger. Performing a Front Squat is easy if you follow the steps below:
Step #1: Set the barbell at about shoulder height on the power rack.
Step #2: Grab the power with an overhand grip at a shoulder width and lift your elbows in a way that your upper arms are perfectly parallel to the ground.
Step #3: Take the bar out of the rack and rest it on your fingertips.
Step #4: Step back and squat in a way that your feet is positioned at shoulder width with your toes turned out slightly.
Step #5: Squat as low as you can without losing the arch of your back.
You can perform 4 sets of this exercise, but make sure to lighten the weights after 2 sets.
- Bulgarian Split Squat:
The Bulgarian Split Squat will help you gain enormous strength in your legs. You can perform this exercise following these steps carefully:
Step #1: Stand in a lunge length position in front of a bench.
Step #2: Pick up two dumbbells and hold them in each hand.
Step #3: Rest the top of your foot on the bench behind you.
Step #4: Carefully lower your body until your rear knee touches the floor and your front thigh is perfectly parallel to the ground.
- Romanian Dead lifts:
The Romanian Dead lift is another great leg exercise for men that can greatly shape, increase the mass and strength of your legs. You can perform this exercise following these steps carefully:
Step #1: Holding a barbell with a shoulder-width grip, shift your legs apart so your feet are hip-width apart.
Step #2: Bend your hips behind as far as you can.
Step #3: Lower the bar along the shins allowing your knees to bend as needed until you feel a stretch in your hamstrings.
Step #4: Make sure your lower back is arched in its natural position.
Squats are great for your back, buttocks and your quads. Squats can help you greatly improve the strength of your thighs. You can perform this exercise following these steps carefully:
Step #1: Bend as far down as possible under a squat rack and grip the bar as far as you are comfortable.
Step #2: When ready, squeeze your shoulder blades together and pushing your elbows up, carefully nudge the bar out of the rack.
Step #3: Take a step back and place your feet shoulder width apart with your toes turned out.
Step #4: Take a deep breath and bend your back into an arch.
Step #5: Sit low in the position and come back up.
- Dumbbell Step up:
Dumbbell Step Ups are great for your calves and will help you tone and increase their strength. You can perform this exercise following these steps carefully:
Step #1: Stand behind a bench or any other elevated surface in a way that will keep your thighs parallel to the ground.
Step #2: Hold a dumbbell in each of your hands and step onto the bench with any one of your leg.
Step #3: Leave your other leg hanging away from the bench, or elevated surface.
Step #4: Step down and repeat the same with your other leg.
The next time you consider skipping leg day at the gym remember that your legs play a vital role in your overall body. Stronger legs will ensure you are able to scale the highest of mountains, run the toughest of marathons and cycle through the city without lying in bed with bad cramps or sore muscles. Stronger leg muscles tire less quickly and can endure the impact of most high-intensity sports. Not only do leg exercise for men provide immense strength to your lower body, it also aids in helping you maintain and achieve a great symmetry. Professional Bodybuilders and other Athletes swear by the perfect symmetry of their overall body, including their legs. If you neglect your legs, you can bid goodbye to the Body Building trophy you’ve been eyeing. Strong legs, will also help you propel the direct weight of your body forward, may it be moving the furniture, flipping tires or pressing a barbell over your chest.
Leg exercises also aid in better and smoother muscle growth as leg exercises for men not only works to tone and strengthen the muscles but also works to keep the joints healthy and working well. The biggest mention of the benefits of performing leg exercises for men should be the fact that leg exercises also aid in boosting your body’s overall metabolism, as you are burning more calories while working all the core muscles of your body.
So the next time you think about skipping a leg day, think about how much it’s going to hurt your overall symmetry of your body.