December 13, 2019 9:11:05 am
A leg day at the gym can be exhausting, but if done consistently, it can be extremely rewarding as it helps tone your legs and glutes. If you are not fond of leg workouts, here is actor Prateik Babbar showing you how this can build your overall strength and fitness.
Take a look!
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In a post consisting six videos, he can be seen doing weighted squats. While squats are counted among the best lower body exercises, weighted squats are a multi-joint, compound exercise which targets all the major muscles of the lower body, including the hips, glutes and thighs.
The key is to start with the basic squat and try out other variations to hit different areas and keep the workouts fresh and challenging.
Babbar can be seen doing a variation of a weighted squat — the hack squat — on the Smith Machine.
The Smith Machine consists of a rack with a suspended barbell that moves up and down on steel runners. There are safety pegs attached to catch the weight if needed, which makes it great for those who want to lift heavy weights.
The Smith Machine squat, or the variation called Hack Squat, is similar to a barbell squat, but one should perfect the basic squat and develop balance before moving on to the Smith Machine.
Here’s how to do weighted squats:
*Stand with feet hip or shoulder-width apart.
*Place the bar just above the shoulders on the trapezius muscles on the shoulders. According to the Smith Machine’s capacity, reduce the weight of the bar when adding weight for the first time.
*Bend the knees and lower into a squat. Stop when your knees are at a 90-degree angle or before you lose the natural arch of your back.
*Contract the glutes and legs while stabilising the body with a strong torso.
*Slowly stand back up without locking the knees and repeat for one-three sets of 10-16 repetitions.
Just like a regular squat, the weighted squat works your quads, glutes and hamstrings. It helps one to build strength and explosive power in your legs. By adding weights in the form of dumbbells, you are taking the squat to the next level and giving yourself a bigger challenge.
With the barbell squat, balance is a major issue. The Smith machine gives you some leeway and allows you to really focus on nailing your quads. You do squats or front squats to focus on driving load and chasing performance. Smith machine hack squats are a nice addition to the big basics. You can concentrate solely on quad stimulation. The three main muscle groups it primarily trains are the quadriceps, hamstrings and glutes.
What to take care of
Many say that Smith Machine takes the body through an unnatural range of motion, which can cause injuries and imbalances. It is better to do a variety of squats rather than doing just one type.
If you are still not convinced about leg exercises, skim through the benefits of strengthening the lower part of the body.
*A strong lower body is crucial to performance whether one is looking to improve their sport performance, gym work, or just daily functional fitness.
*Leg exercises aren’t just for quads and hamstrings as they also work the core muscles, improve balance, and even grip strength.
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