Leg Machine Workout In The Gym
- Leg Press
- Leg Press Heel Raises
- 4-Way Hip
- Seated Calf Raises
- Quad Extensions
- Hamstring Curls
Keep reading below for video and written instruction for each of these great exercises.
Leg Press (a.k.a. “Leg Sled”): Great for your quads and glutes. Weights are usually loaded on a couple of posts up around chest eye.
- Sit in the seat, put your feet up on the footpad above you, and extend your knees.
- Unlock the sled and slowly lower the resistance down towards you. Focus on keeping your knees right over your toes.
- Push with your legs to return to starting position.
- Three sets of 10–12 reps
Leg Press Straight-Legged Calf Raises: There are actually two muscles that make up your calf: your gastrocnemius and your soleus. Your gastrocnemius crosses your knee joint and is primarily worked out when doing heel raises with your knee in a straight position. An easy place to do this is while seated on the leg sled.
- While seated in the leg press, drop your feet down to the bottom of the pad so that just the balls of your feet are supporting the resistance.
- Extend your knees and perform ankle pumps/heel raises to move the resistance up and down.
- Three sets of 15-20 reps
Four-way hip machine: My go-to for strengthening the hip flexors, abductors (glute med and min), adductors (inner thigh), and extensors (butt). Typically, there is a platform that you stand on with some sort of small pad that can be adjusted to various heights/positions depending on which exercise you are performing.
- Hip flexors: worked with the resistance on the front of your leg while you lift your leg to the front.
- Hip adductors: use your groin muscles to pull the resistance in towards your stance leg.
- Hip extensors: push the weight behind you using your glutes.
- Hip abductors: uses the muscles on the side of your leg to push your leg out to the side.
- 3 sets of 10 reps of each on both legs.
Seated calf raises: As mentioned previously – there are two muscle in your calf. We’ve worked the gastrocnemeus, but we can’t forget about the other muscle – the soleus. This muscle is worked as the knees are bent which unlocks the gastrocnemius muscle.
- Sit in the machine and adjust the top pad until it rests on top of your legs
- Lift the resistance by lifting your heels and unlock the machine.
- Continue to “pump” your ankle up and down to perform the exercise.
- 3 sets of 15-20 reps
Leg extensions: Great exercise to really focus on the quad muscle.
- Start in a seated position with your legs bent and the lower pad resting on your shin just above your ankles.
- Contracting the quad muscles in the front of your leg to elevate the pad and bring your legs into a straight position.
- Slowly return to starting position.
- 3 sets of 10 reps
Hamstring curls: As its name implies – we’re going to really isolate that hamstring group on the back of your leg with this one. With most machines this exercise is performed either seated or laying on your stomach.
- Start with your legs out straight and your heels/lower legs resting on the top of the pad.
- If you are on the seated machine there is another pad which you have to bring down a pad on top of your quad muscle just above the knees.
- Bend your knees and pull the resistance towards your butt.
- Slowly return back to the starting position.
- 3 sets of 10 reps
So what are the best gym machines for your upper body? Check them out here: