Training quads - any tips?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Apr 13, 2011 1:58 PM GMT
    I though I'd ask for some advice. I need a couple of new exercises to build up my quads having realised that doing squats with a smith machine was a really bad idea.

    My main problem is that I have big legs but my upper body is weak by comparison. Holding onto two 20kg dumbells whilst doing lunges is problematic at present. Also free squatting with a heavy bar is also not so easy.

    Any advice on what I could add would be appreciated icon_smile.gif

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    Apr 13, 2011 11:29 PM GMT
    dtank saidI though I'd ask for some advice. I need a couple of new exercises to build up my quads having realised that doing squats with a smith machine was a really bad idea.

    My main problem is that I have big legs but my upper body is weak by comparison. Holding onto two 20kg dumbells whilst doing lunges is problematic at present. Also free squatting with a heavy bar is also not so easy.

    Any advice on what I could add would be appreciated icon_smile.gif



    Sorry, but the answer, IMHO, is....free squat with a heavy bar.

    I have a weak upper body compared to my legs as well. I bet I even have you beat in that department..my bench is so laughable I won't even print it. The other guys I lift with used to laugh at the way I'd hold the bar differently due to the decided lack of muscle on top compared to them (but they also outweigh me nearly 2:1). My walkout is more of a limiting factor than my actual squat when I get to really heavy weights. But you just learn to suck it up (or you do when you have huge powerlifters yelling in your face what a p*ssy you are) and it gets easier. So yeah, you'll have bruises and such from the bar, but as you build up your back and rear delts it gets better - it has for me.

    If you really don't want to squat with weight, try box jumps or Tabata squats. Tabata squats are four minutes of hell - don't plan on descending stairs quickly the next day:



    Your "score" for Tabata squats is the lowest number of reps you did in one of the 20-second cycles.

    Good luck!

    P.S. Just out of curiosity, if you have "big legs" but disproportionate upper body, why are you wanting to work your quads more as opposed to bringing your upper more in line with your lower?
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    Apr 14, 2011 2:50 AM GMT
    Lunges aren't exactly mass builders. You're gonna have to stick with squats. Use light weights, until you get the form right. Also, add deadlifts into your routine. Again, use light weights at first.
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    Apr 14, 2011 2:55 AM GMT
    Squats, squats, squats!

    Try body weight squats, and then progress using a dumbbell cupped like a goblet in between both hands. I do those sometimes.

    Otherwise, free weight body squats...dead lifts etc. Power cleans also work 'em pretty well.
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    Apr 14, 2011 3:14 AM GMT
    I have been doing squats on the smith machine for over 10 years now, never had a problem.

    My gym does have a hack squat machine and another type of hammer strength machine where you can do a squat type movement. Try sissy squats. Leg press might build some mass.Look around your gym for that stuff. You do not just have to do free weight squats
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    Apr 14, 2011 3:45 AM GMT
    A couple pics of track cyclists' legs...

    n596825930_1101815_2346.jpg

    0252_francets_1stphspt-small.jpg

    4043353710_c25ddc52b5.jpg

    Some intense cycling paired with your weightlifting routine could really help to give your legs some size...
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    Apr 14, 2011 4:01 AM GMT
    dtank saidAlso free squatting with a heavy bar is also not so easy.



    I think the fact that barbell squats are hard are part of what makes them so effective. Start light, just using the barbell without any additional weight til you feel comfortable with teh movement. Then you can go heavier. If you really don't like the exercise then leg presses are probably goiing to be the next best option for working the quads.
  • B71115

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    Apr 14, 2011 4:07 AM GMT
    sashaman said
    dtank saidAlso free squatting with a heavy bar is also not so easy.



    I think the fact that barbell squats are hard are part of what makes them so effective. Start light, just using the barbell without any additional weight til you feel comfortable with teh movement. Then you can go heavier. If you really don't like the exercise then leg presses are probably goiing to be the next best option for working the quads.


    Exactly. If it were easy, everybody would have great legs. That's the point of resistance training. Breaking down your body allows it to rebuild bigger and stronger.

    You do them because they're tough.
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    Apr 20, 2011 7:32 AM GMT
    Thanks for the tips guys.

    After some initial worries I've got my head together and gone on to free squatting. I'm working on my form at 80Kg and hoping to slowly work up.

    And interesting on the cycling tips. Alas, I'm trying to cut down on cardio as I find it hard to bulk even when doing HIIT.

    My legs are 24" on the quads, 17" on the calves. Trying to get up to 27" for next year. Any extra advice would be really welcome.