Working out at the gym shouldn’t mean you hammer away at the same exercises daily. In fact, last week we explained why you should only target certain muscle groups on certain days of the week, and you shouldn’t workout 2 different major muscle groups on the same day. Likewise, you shouldn’t train the same muscle group 2 days in a row. The same holds true for “leg day.”
What Is Leg Day?
“Leg Day” gets a lot of buzz on social media, or maybe you’ve seen memes on the subject: it’s the day of the week you workout your leg muscles. If you haven’t ever done leg day before, it’s time to learn more about it and get started!
Building strength in your lower half is important. Think of all that your legs have to do daily and you’ll understand why – they’re literally what propels you forward and keep you in motion every day. While this may seem like it’s enough exercise in and of itself, experts agree you should be training your legs at least once every week
The major muscle groups of the legs, and the best exercises for each, include the following:
- Quadriceps: These 4 large muscles are on the front of your legs. The “quads” work to extend the knees straight and to flex your hips. Squatting is one of the primary ways you can work out your quads. Try doing a back or front squat to exercise your quads, as well as lunges.
- Hamstrings: The hamstrings are a group of 3 muscles on the back of your thighs. They work together to flex your knees. These muscles tend to be the most neglected of the entire lower body. Try to do a hamstring curl and extend the hips through hip thrusts and deadlifts to work out your hamstrings.
- Calves: These muscles at the back of the lower legs work together to flex the ankle. You can effectively train your calves with calf pressing or calf raising.
- Gluteus: The “glutes” comprise the 3 muscles of the buttocks. Together, the glutes stabilize the body through all kinds of movement. You can work out your glutes with exercises like the deadlift or squats.
How Do I Get Started?
Start with exercises that work multiple leg muscles at a time, and then look into isolation exercises to put focus on just one muscle at a time. Once you’ve learned the basics, you’ll be able to delve into more creative exercises and mix weights into your leg day workouts.
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