Grow legs without squats?

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  1. Should you squat? Maybe. Do you have to? Of course not. There are always alternatives.
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  2. I personally would never give up squatting. I like the way my lower body looks from ATG squats. I have a permanent teardrop now, even when taking a break from squatting due to an injury.
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  3. I've had good leg growth while mainly doing varied stance leg press.

  4. I love front squats, i never ever back squat though, i think i back squatted free bar once in the past 5 years and once on the smith machine near winter, i find back squats allow for more weight to be used but do not compare to the quad focus you get from front squatting, i feel i could get away with just varied leg press, hack squats, machine assisted squats, leg extensions and leg curls for complete upper thigh development along with the thigh adductor machine to target inner upper thigh which i feel cannot be isolated with any other exercise. If i recall, Dorian Yates stopped squatting quite early in his career and built Olympia Class legs with just leg press and hack squats as the main mass builders. I feel once the foundation of legs has been built from squatting you can switch over to leg press and hack squats to isolate the muscles.

  5. Quote Originally Posted by doogans View Post
    I've had good leg growth while mainly doing varied stance leg press.
    Do you also perform unilateral leg press, i find this works well to allow for more strength to be gained and balance out any weakness on other side.
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  6. Front squats and split squats are my primary builders. I’ve been avoiding back squats because I have an ongoing issue with my l4/5 and for whatever reason it is only back squats that flair this up.

  7. Quote Originally Posted by paul56778 View Post
    Do you also perform unilateral leg press, i find this works well to allow for more strength to be gained and balance out any weakness on other side.
    I've actually been incorporating that into my routine but admittedly not as much as I should. My left quad is lagging behind a bit so I'm going to force myself to strip some weight off the leg press and go unilateral at least once a week. It's nice loading up a bunch of plates but I think you're right, focusing on each leg individually has its benefits.

  8. I love low bar, slightly wide stanced, toes out, deep squats. Hits my hammies and glutes HARD. There's no other possible way I can load my glutes/hammies as much as I can like this. I tend to mix up bar position a bit during a squat session, but I find it really odd how people here are only talking about quad development when squatting. Heavy squatting hits the whole body, and if done right, will blow up your glutes and hammies too and really hit your core hard.

  9. Can you build legs without doing (insert any specific exercise here including squat)?

    Sure, why not. I mean, really, for quads, some people like Elliot Hulse believe that leg extensions actually build size much faster than squatting.

    And there are some legit reasons not to squat. Not everyone is suited for every exercise.

    But the question is, "Honestly, why is it that you 'can't' squat?" - if it is just discomfort, pain from the movement that isn't legitimate spine/bone/tissue damage or the like - you should probably ask yourself this question:

    "Why are you lifting weights?"

    In all reality - maybe getting big, or getting strong is your answer and it goes no further - but lifting weights should be something that improves your health and quality of life. There are really very few exercises that will do this like the squat and the deadlift.

    I personally agree with MrKleen73 (I hate typing that - it makes my finger tips burn) about the deadlift. I think the deadlift actually is the superior exercise, for most people to the squat. Why? Because it is THE exercise that translates to REAL LIFE more than any other exercise. How often do you have to pick up something heavy? Oh yeah, all the time. How many people hurt themselves doing this? Lots. Being good at this can almost literally SAVE YOUR LIFE.

    The next exercise, close second, I would say is squats. It's just a great exercise for many reasons beyond "getting bigger" or "stronger". Like the deadlift, one thing that is often overlooked is the fact that doing these exercises actually requires a significant degree of cardiovascular output. Activating all those muscles and supplying them with oxygen is taxing on the entire system. Leg presses and bench presses can be too - but nothing is really the same as the deadlift or squat.

    And that gets too it. If you are just training for size or whatever - then do whatever. You don't need squats or any other exercise. If you want total functionality - I think you should reconsider.

    Of course, if you're in a situation like The Rock (mentioned above) - then training specificity comes into play there too. He needs to look big and strong and be able to function as if he's big and strong. So he probably doesn't squat or dead lift heavy to avoid that down time. And that's also smart in his case.

  10. Some excellent points made particularly on the cardiovascular output required for squats and deadlifts. It is definitely a significant deterrent for some but ofcourse fantastic for conditioning and I admit after a heavy set of breathing squats I consider leg extensions, leg presses and the plethora of alternate leg training exercises as wind down finishers. I think of them as "filler" exercises with squats as the foundation.

  11. Quote Originally Posted by HIT4ME View Post
    Can you build legs without doing (insert any specific exercise here including squat)?

    Sure, why not. I mean, really, for quads, some people like Elliot Hulse believe that leg extensions actually build size much faster than squatting.

    And there are some legit reasons not to squat. Not everyone is suited for every exercise.

    But the question is, "Honestly, why is it that you 'can't' squat?" - if it is just discomfort, pain from the movement that isn't legitimate spine/bone/tissue damage or the like - you should probably ask yourself this question:

    "Why are you lifting weights?"

    In all reality - maybe getting big, or getting strong is your answer and it goes no further - but lifting weights should be something that improves your health and quality of life. There are really very few exercises that will do this like the squat and the deadlift.

    I personally agree with MrKleen73 (I hate typing that - it makes my finger tips burn) about the deadlift. I think the deadlift actually is the superior exercise, for most people to the squat. Why? Because it is THE exercise that translates to REAL LIFE more than any other exercise. How often do you have to pick up something heavy? Oh yeah, all the time. How many people hurt themselves doing this? Lots. Being good at this can almost literally SAVE YOUR LIFE.

    The next exercise, close second, I would say is squats. It's just a great exercise for many reasons beyond "getting bigger" or "stronger". Like the deadlift, one thing that is often overlooked is the fact that doing these exercises actually requires a significant degree of cardiovascular output. Activating all those muscles and supplying them with oxygen is taxing on the entire system. Leg presses and bench presses can be too - but nothing is really the same as the deadlift or squat.

    And that gets too it. If you are just training for size or whatever - then do whatever. You don't need squats or any other exercise. If you want total functionality - I think you should reconsider.

    Of course, if you're in a situation like The Rock (mentioned above) - then training specificity comes into play there too. He needs to look big and strong and be able to function as if he's big and strong. So he probably doesn't squat or dead lift heavy to avoid that down time. And that's also smart in his case.
    I had a good laugh at the bolded! Otherwise if squats don't seem to work well for someone I really think that Goblet Squats can be the answer. It forces you into a good position and stimulates the core, hips quads, and posterior chain while helping with thoracic mobility. I think Goblet squats are good for people who can't go too heavy on squats for whatever reason, plus they are a great lead into front squats as well.

    The bottom line though is that any exercise you are capable of pushing progressive overload on with appropriate volume is going to make whatever muscle is being trained grow so long as nutrient needs are met.
    Live Hard, Laugh Hard, Love Hard and Heal Fast! - KLEEN
    Current Training Log -
    http://anabolicminds.com/forum/workout-logs/276206-kleen-strong-body.html

  12. Quote Originally Posted by MrKleen73 View Post
    I had a good laugh at the bolded! Otherwise if squats don't seem to work well for someone I really think that Goblet Squats can be the answer. It forces you into a good position and stimulates the core, hips quads, and posterior chain while helping with thoracic mobility. I think Goblet squats are good for people who can't go too heavy on squats for whatever reason, plus they are a great lead into front squats as well.

    The bottom line though is that any exercise you are capable of pushing progressive overload on with appropriate volume is going to make whatever muscle is being trained grow so long as nutrient needs are met.
    I knew you would

    Truth is, we're actually too similar...and I just love fighting with you. It's like being married to someone. I get the feeling if I said the sun was yellow you would say it's orange. And I KNOW I would say the sky is green if you asked.

  13. Squats end up being a posterior chain exercise for me because of my body dimensions. For quads I like frankenstein squats, leg press and leg extensions. It’s about finding what suits you and your body.

  14. Quote Originally Posted by skeogh View Post
    Squats end up being a posterior chain exercise for me because of my body dimensions. For quads I like frankenstein squats, leg press and leg extensions. It’s about finding what suits you and your body.
    Once I changed to predominantly olympic squats my quads got more out of it but it is still posterior chain dominant for me as well. I have been having good luck recently with Sissy Leg Presses for quads. You put the balls of your feet down at the bottom of the platform like you are going to do calves then do leg presses instead, it feels almost exactly like a sissy squat just easier to load and no balance required.
    Live Hard, Laugh Hard, Love Hard and Heal Fast! - KLEEN
    Current Training Log -
    http://anabolicminds.com/forum/workout-logs/276206-kleen-strong-body.html

  15. Quote Originally Posted by HIT4ME View Post
    I knew you would

    Truth is, we're actually too similar...and I just love fighting with you. It's like being married to someone. I get the feeling if I said the sun was yellow you would say it's orange. And I KNOW I would say the sky is green if you asked.
    Actually the sky is colorless but the reflective matter in the atmosphere appears to be blue due to the reflection of the water. PPPPLLLLBBBBTTTT!!!!
    Live Hard, Laugh Hard, Love Hard and Heal Fast! - KLEEN
    Current Training Log -
    http://anabolicminds.com/forum/workout-logs/276206-kleen-strong-body.html

  16. Quote Originally Posted by MrKleen73 View Post
    Actually the sky is colorless but the reflective matter in the atmosphere appears to be blue due to the reflection of the water. PPPPLLLLBBBBTTTT!!!!
    Oh man. Proving my point. It is blue because of a phenomenon known as "scattering". Nothing to do with the ocean.

  17. Quote Originally Posted by HIT4ME View Post
    Oh man. Proving my point. It is blue because of a phenomenon known as "scattering". Nothing to do with the ocean.
    Sweet! I had to go look that up. Learned something new today. I am pretty sure that was what I was taught back in school. Even when I typed it I was thinking there is probably more to it and I am about to hear it. LOL

    Go figure, It will probably surprise you, but I honestly only have a 9th grade education and a GED. I went to a computer vocational school later in life when it was time to get my crap together. However I was on the road to nowhere my first 24 years on this world... I am relatively useless to my daughter now in school since she is in 9th now and I never made it out of 9th. I quit school 3-4 times before it stuck and I went to get my GED. My ADHD and upbringing made school impossible for me.

    Honestly thinking about going back to do remedial college classes to catch up so I can help Trinity with her stuff when she gets there...
    Live Hard, Laugh Hard, Love Hard and Heal Fast! - KLEEN
    Current Training Log -
    http://anabolicminds.com/forum/workout-logs/276206-kleen-strong-body.html

  18. Quote Originally Posted by HIT4ME View Post
    Oh man. Proving my point. It is blue because of a phenomenon known as "scattering". Nothing to do with the ocean.
    Interesting, and apparently the water also refracts the blue light more than the other colors which is why the ocean looks blue too. Cool!
    Live Hard, Laugh Hard, Love Hard and Heal Fast! - KLEEN
    Current Training Log -
    http://anabolicminds.com/forum/workout-logs/276206-kleen-strong-body.html

  19. Quote Originally Posted by MrKleen73 View Post
    Sweet! I had to go look that up. Learned something new today. I am pretty sure that was what I was taught back in school. Even when I typed it I was thinking there is probably more to it and I am about to hear it. LOL

    Go figure, It will probably surprise you, but I honestly only have a 9th grade education and a GED. I went to a computer vocational school later in life when it was time to get my crap together. However I was on the road to nowhere my first 24 years on this world... I am relatively useless to my daughter now in school since she is in 9th now and I never made it out of 9th. I quit school 3-4 times before it stuck and I went to get my GED. My ADHD and upbringing made school impossible for me.

    Honestly thinking about going back to do remedial college classes to catch up so I can help Trinity with her stuff when she gets there...
    Haha, I just got a real kick that I had to argue even when we were joking about arguing.

    As far as school - it can be very over rated. First and foremost, there is a difference between being intelligent and being educated. There are a ton of subjects that I am not educated on. It has nothing to do with my abilities or intelligence.

    Second, I got a college degree with a 3.2 GPA, which is nothing to write home about. I did this, however, without ever reading a single book in my entire life before I graduated from college. Literally.

    Sure, I would read parts. I actually even had an entire class in college based on a single poli-sci book and I read 3/4 And told the professor I was done reading it because I was a junior and I had never read a book to that point and I wasn't going to blow my streak.

    I did start reading, A LOT, after college and grew a lot at that point. But school didn't help me as much as my self direction did. I also had some very smart friends and influences in my life that taught me how to look at problems and fix them.

    School has its place, but knowledge is free to everyone and there are no true secrets. The truth can be discovered by anyone.

    And in that light, I think Trinity has a better shot with you as a father teaching her that knowing isn't always important.

    As far as going back to school, I often think about that myself. I've had so many people tell me I should have been a doctor that I often wonder if I could get through med school at this point without opening a text book if someone rich would make that bet with me I would take it haha.

    There is also YouTube and Kahn Academy, which I have learned some things from...it can be hard..but you can see and learn about some subjects you would never even look at otherwise.

  20. Same here I know I am highly intelligent now. Took me finding my own way to realize it though. I could be better though. Plus a degree could open more doors in my career.
    Could finally punch me through into the 6 figures.
    Live Hard, Laugh Hard, Love Hard and Heal Fast! - KLEEN
    Current Training Log -
    http://anabolicminds.com/forum/workout-logs/276206-kleen-strong-body.html
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