Normal Weight on an Incline Leg Press

Incline leg presses sculpt lower-body muscles.

Incline leg presses sculpt lower-body muscles.

Strengthening your lower-body muscles can help you combat jiggly thighs and a flat backside. It also benefits your overall muscular health and boosts your metabolism for faster calorie burning. Before you attempt this exercise, get your doctor's approval and consider how to safely and effectively do an incline leg press.

Warm-Up

Warm-ups increase your breathing and heart rate to prepare your body for activity. They also help to transition cold muscles from rest to exercise. Focus on movements that engage the lower body and work for at least five to 10 minutes before doing an incline leg press. Examples include jumping jacks, jump squats and skipping.

Incline Leg Press Form

Sit down in the chair and place your feet shoulder-width apart on the foot plate. Straighten your legs to engage the machine and then release the safety. The safety should be located near the seat; this allows you to lower and lift the weight. Slowly bend your knees and control the weight down toward your body. Stop when your legs are almost touching your chest and slowly press the weight away from your body until your legs are straight again. Repeat until you reach muscle fatigue.

Muscle Fatigue

Instead of thinking in terms of the right number of repetitions to perform, you should work until you reach muscle fatigue. It should feel like the exercise is nearly impossible but you can still do a full repetition in the proper form. Start with a light amount of weight and attempt the incline leg press. If you don't reach muscle fatigue in 90 seconds, add 5 to 10 pounds of weight and try again. Continue until you are able to tire your lower body in less than 90 seconds.

Warning

Ask a friend to spot you when you perform this activity for added safety. If you become too tired, she can help remove weight or lock the machine for you. Pay attention to your body when you're trying to find the muscle fatigue threshold; stop when the exercise feels impossible, not when you're struggling to straighten your legs. If you wait until your muscles cannot complete a repetition, the weight could come down on your legs very quickly and cause a serious injury. This exercise puts a lot of strain on the hip, knee and ankle joints and is not recommended if you have joint problems.

 

About the Author

Ashley Farley has been a certified personal trainer since 2008. She is also a writer specializing in healthy living, fitness and nutrition topics. Farley has an Associate of Science in mental health services from the Community College of the Air Force and is pursuing her B.A. in English at Wright State University.

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