There’s controversy at the gym about Leg Presses. Some like it, others say it sucks big time.

Ok, here’s the low-down on the leg press along with some points, both good and bad:

A. Good Points

  1. It’s a supported, relatively safe and controllable exercise with lots of stability. It is rather difficult to injure yourself here, as long as you’re not foolish. Also, greatly reduces the opportunity for lower back injury compares with a more functional, more dangerous exercise like full squats.
  2. It’s probably the strongest position for the human body to be in as far as leg movements go. The decline leg press allows the user to use more weight, with a greater opportunity for muscle isolation than any other exercise that I can think of.
  3. Allows for a comfortable concentration and intense focus on the work at hand because you are not worried about balance and injury.
  4. Useful side effects, dependant on the style, such as additional stimulation on the calves.

B. Bad Points

  1. Let’s face it, it’s a bodybuilding exercise offering relatively little core or functional benefit. This is the flipside of above points 1. & 3 and the trade-off for the safety and stability that it furnishes.
  2. You’ll be tempted to pile on more weight than is probably prudent and end up using a less disciplined form than you should as you struggle to impress everyone in the gym, including yourself, with what an amazingly strong a fellow you really are.

So, in summary: the decline leg press it gives you some benefits at the cost of bypassing others and has a place in a well-rounded leg routine.

Just not a very functional one.

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