Tough biceps, muscular chest, and strong shoulders might be your only targets at the gym, but you should not just focus on your upper body. It might create an imbalance between your upper part of the body and lower part of the body. So, doing lower body workouts is as important as doing the biceps, chest, and shoulder workouts. The best lower body workouts target your quads, thighs, hamstrings, gluteus, shins, and calves to better your daily movements, like running, walking, or jumping.
There are many types of lower body workouts that you can do at home or in the gym. This article will guide you to know how to do lower body workouts at home.
How to Do the Lower Body Workouts
There is always a general rule to begin something. The general rule for beginning lower body workouts is to work your larger muscles first and then your smaller ones eventually. So, you should perform the lower body workouts targeting your muscles in the following order:
Glutes (Hips) > Quads > Hamstrings > Thighs > Calves > Shins
Note : You can disregard this rule only if you feel that one of your smaller muscles is lagging far behind in its strength. It might sometimes create a weak link in your body. So, in that case, you should target that particular body part to begin your lower body workouts.
Balance is Important
Perform at least 4 or 5 lower body workouts daily for balanced muscle development and tangible workout results. Your daily lower body workouts should be of two types of exercises, such as compound lower body workouts which target several muscle groups at once and isolated lower body workouts which target a single muscle group at once.
With bad hips and knees, you may take a few weeks to focus on those muscles and the joints surrounding them. For instance, a knee problem requires the strengthening of your quads. A machine that allows for thigh squeeze and leg extension helps strengthen your quads and knees. For another example, if you have a hamstring problem, you can try the leg curl machine or different types of squats to improve your hamstrings. However, if you have serious medical issues like broken bones or muscle pain, you must consult your physician before starting any lower body workouts.
So, the recommendation is that you start with the isolated lower body workouts if you have a single part of your lower body that is lagging behind compared to the other parts. Then go for the compound lower body workouts like squats, lunges and the best quad exercises.
Tips for Different Parts of Your Lower Body
Most of the lower body workouts involve your glutes (hips). However, you can maximize the impact of those exercises with a few simple techniques.
- While you’re performing the leg press or the bodyweight squats, shift your weight slightly back onto your heels by keeping your toes pointed straight as much as possible.
- Repeat the process especially when you push back up into the straight-leg position.
- The weight you shift onto your toes helps you to involve your quadriceps. Shift your body weight to maximize the impact on your quadriceps.
- And then when you stand up, make sure that your hips are working.
The leg extension is an exercise in which you straighten your legs from a bent or lying position. It may give you a little bit of pain in your kneecap because of the fully extended position. In this case
- Take a few seconds of a break just before you extend your legs to make them straight.
- A leg extension machine like rowing machines is useful when it comes to avoiding this pain.
The leg curl exercises work very well for your hamstrings. You can also use a leg curl machine to do this exercise.
- Keep your legs straight and buckle your heels toward your butt.
- You can do this in 3 different positions: lying, seated and standing. The machines also have these three varieties. You should choose the position you feel comfortable at.
Performing the standing calf raises can work your calves to be powerful.
- Find the most comfortable position by angling your toes to stand on them.
- Don’t move your toes too much outward or inward. You might stress too much on your knees and ankles if you do so.
- Always perform the calf raise exercises slowly.
What to Avoid While Doing Lower Body Workouts
- Don’t just focus on only one part of your body. It might create an imbalance in your lower parts.
- Never put your knees in trouble. Your knees are the most important parts of your lower body. If you hurt your knees, you won’t be able to do most of the lower body workouts.
- Don’t perform more than 15 exercises in a day. You should not put your body to the absolute end of your energy level.
Following the tips mentioned above and techniques can maximize the impacts of the lower body workouts that you perform. There are some different lower body workouts for women also. You might find them more useful if you follow these tips carefully.