How to perform Leg Extension
1. First choose your weight and sit on the machine with your legs under the pad (feet pointed forward) and the hands holding the side bars. This will be your starting position. Note: You will need to adjust the pad so that it falls on top of your lower leg (just above your feet). Also, make sure that your legs form a 90-degree angle between the lower and upper leg.
2. Using your quadriceps, extend your legs to the maximum as you exhale. Ensure that the rest of the body remains stationary on the seat. Pause a second on the contracted position.
3. Slowly lower the weight back to the original position as you inhale, ensuring that you do not go past the 90-degree angle limit.
4. Repeat for the recommended amount of times.
Video: Leg Extension
Muscles Targeted: Quadriceps
Points to Remember
Use a slow and controlled movement, do not “kick” the weights up. Pause at the top of the movement and squeeze your quads, this adds intensity to the leg extension. Leg extensions can be used as a pre-exhaust exercise for squats or other big compound movements, and also used for the second exercise in compound/isolation supersets.
1. Make sure your back is pushed back firmly against the back rest, particularly at the base of the spine.
2. Keep the head and neck still on the leg extension. Don’t wobble forward, back or to the sides.
3. Don’t use very heavy weights for this exercise. Keep the load light to moderate.
4. Adjust the leg bar length appropriately so that the padded bar is not too far up the shins.
5. Don’t do this exercise if your knees hurt during the process.
You can use various foot positions in order to maximize stimulation of certain thigh areas. Toes in emphasizes the outer thigh while toes out the inner. Also, you can perform the movement unilaterally (one leg at a time).Author Information