For most people, having strong legs isn’t a major concern; rather, they prefer having a certain amount of leg power. There is a difference between having great leg power and high amount of leg strength; powerful legs allow you to press a lot of weight over a short period of time.
Leg strength is important for many sports and activities. There are different modalities when it comes to strengthening your legs. Physical experts recommend you begin with three basic exercises which are squat, lunge, and step-ups. These movements are the basis for your leg strength foundation that work all leg muscles together.
The need to have strong legs should top the priority list of any sports person. Here, we look at some of the exercises that can help increase your leg strength.
To achieve a high amount of leg power, you need to be quick and strong. Squats make you assume a strong position. For those who struggle with squat positioning, you can do the leg press. This exercise targets all the leg muscles especially the calves. Stand in a squat position with your feet apart, hold some weight on your shoulder or just stretch your hands. Slowly drop down into a squat position and ensure your body weight rests on your feet. Hold at this position for at least three seconds then get up to a standing position and exhale. Perform this exercise for 5 to 8 reps to develop a solid strength foundation.
You may have probably heard of step-ups, if not here is a simple breakdown. First, find an aerobic step or a platform that is not too high, preferably six inches. An aerobic step works perfect as it easy to adjust the height.
Hold some weight (preferably dumbbells) at your shoulder and place one of your foot on the step. Push your body up onto the aerobic step or bench, raise your right leg up towards your chest and balance your body with the other leg. Hold for a second, then step down and do the same with your left leg.
When you return to the starting position, make sure your trailing foot doesn’t touch the floor and be sure to maintain an upright body posture. Do several reps before switching to the next rep. This is going to be a bit challenging since your muscle legs will be under constant tension. If you’re struggling, you can reduce the height of your step a little bit.
The lunge is a great exercise for cyclists since it helps to strengthen your legs. Do a forward lunge with your right foot until the back of your leg is parallel to the floor to stretch the muscles and develop tension. At this position push your body off the ground and switch your legs midway to land in a lunge. Repeat the same process with your other leg. Perform three sets of about 10 to 15 reps each to achieve maximum strength foundation.
Having looked at some of the essential exercises to strengthen your leg muscles, it’s time to put them into practice. Avoid overtraining your legs as it might be stressful. Just two or three sessions a week with a day or two breaks between the workouts will work perfectly.