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  1. #1
    JDawg1536's Avatar
    JDawg1536 is offline "Rock" of Love ;)
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    squats vs. leg press

    im sure this has been talked about many times,but i also have a question to start out with. when i do either of these lifts a little tendon or somthing in the outside back of my kneee jumps out of place when i go down all the way. does this happen to anyone else? it is very annoying and is worse when i do squats. the only way i get it to not be so bad is when i get a wide stance on the machine. is doing leg press really that much of a disadvantage compared to squats?

  2. #2
    majorpecs's Avatar
    majorpecs is offline Anabolic Member
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    I think one of the main reasons squate are heralded as "THE" leg excercise is that they have been proven to have an effect on OVERALL body size and not just legs. The use of stabilizer muscles performed during squats and also something about the nervous system create a synergy that raises the set point of overall mass. Leg press doesn't provide the same thing..that said, leg press is a great leg excerside if squats are out of the question.

  3. #3
    Warrior's Avatar
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    Here's my spin on Leg Presses and Squats - and injury prevention...

    Leg Presses allow you to focus less on balancing a heavily loaded bar and purely on pushing some massive weight. Plus if your traps are underdeveloped - it can be more difficult to balance the Squat bar. Leg Presses also allow more control for you to change foot positioning to target your muscles groups differently.

    However, like majorpecs was getting into, Squats are totaly free weight and a more natural movement to your body. As opposed to the Leg Press slide. You will get a better resistance in the negative range for added growth. Your legs can develop more evenly than a motion that is not as natural. And going too deep targets your glutes more than quads/hams and puts added stress on the knees. IMO - use Hack Squats for a safer deep range of motion using less resistance.

    For most it would be best to use both - for the benefit of each. Be sure to use correct form with Squats and protect your lower back - or your bodybuilding goals can be quickly shortened by lower back trauma... and use the safety bars as insurance against dropping the weight...

    BTW - because of the make up of the quadriceps they need more time under tension - keep pumpin' at them for 10-12 for strength or 12-20 for hypertrophy. And higher reps are safer on your knees anyway (increases localized blood flow and warms the joint causing it to be more flexable) - plus, don't neglect plenty of warm up sets. Hamstrings are more fast twitch and require less time under tension for training adaption.

    But anyway, I blame part of my current knee problem (a clicking noise when extending my right leg) on using more heavy close stance Leg Presses then free weight Squats and not working hamstrings enough... a strength inbalance in the legs, combined with a very heavy deep range of motion that pulls at the knee joint in an unnatural way. Adding fish oils, glucosamine and prioritizing Hamstring strength has helped A LOT for my injury. I used to find it painful to walk upstairs - now I can run upstairs again

  4. #4
    BIG TEXAN's Avatar
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    Well I believe Warrior has said it all.

  5. #5
    majorpecs's Avatar
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    He always does..I don't even know why I try...

  6. #6
    Diesel's Avatar
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    Real men squat!

    I do not disagree with what Warrior has said. However, for me, Leg Press is worthless. I can not get a full range of motion because my knees come straight into my chest. This could simply be an issue with the particular leg press machine my gym currently has as the back is not adjustable.

    Squats and Hacks are the way I go.

    D

  7. #7
    sherpa27 is offline Junior Member
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    good post warrior, nothing beats squats

  8. #8
    Warrior's Avatar
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    Personally - I frequently will bust veins in my traps doing a day of heavy Leg Presses with heavy Hack Squats. They usually take about 3 days for the red to go away. So, personally I can get the intensity out of leg presses for sure.

    But I know what your saying Diesel - some Leg Press racks seem to be made more for beginners than for the hardcore - finding a good one is deffinitly a plus... one with the right angle and foot pad position... I have trained on a few that I deffinitly did not care for...

    I am looking forward to using Squats again as my bread butter routine for legs. Busting out the ol' leather belt and going to work them in again as my knee injury starts to subside more and more... (right now doing high rep machine Leg Presses, for Quadriceps, to keep off atrophy and help with rehab - working hams seperatly and more traditionally for strength)...

  9. #9
    Diesel's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Warrior

    But I know what your saying Diesel - some Leg Press racks seem to be made more for beginners than for the hardcore - finding a good one is deffinitly a plus... one with the right angle and foot pad position... I have trained on a few that I deffinitly did not care for...

    The one at my gym is so bad that I have actually cracked ribs using it.



    D

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by Diesel


    The one at my gym is so bad that I have actually cracked ribs using it.



    D
    Damn......I think I'd have to move if no other gym was available...

    I love my squats but I do find time to work in the 'ole leg press ever other week.

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