The best exercises and effective techniques for sculpted calves and thighs.
You can pump your legs without weights
You need to work with heavy weights to quickly increase your strength, but you don’t have to do it to pump up your muscles.
According to a meta-analysisB. J. Schoenfeld, J. Grgic, et al. Strength and hypertrophy adaptations between low- vs. high-load resistance training: A systematic review and meta-analysis / Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research scientific studies show that muscles increase just as well when working with heavy weights at low repetition rates as when doing 12-40 repetitions with or without light equipment.
But there is one condition: the exercises must be done to muscle failure or nearly so. In other words, you shouldn’t have more than 1-2 reps at the end of the approach.
To sufficiently fatigue your muscles, you can use different variations:
. Choose challenging exercises. For example, squat on one leg or exclude the relaxation phase.
.Adding weight. To do this, you need to buy compact home workout equipment, such as expansion bands with different resistances. You can also make weights with the materials on hand.
.Add jumps. The explosive component will fatigue the muscles much faster. Review J. Grgic, B. J. Schoenfeld, P. Mikulic. Effects of plyometric vs. resistance training on skeletal muscle hypertrophy: a review / Journal of Sport and Health Science Studies have shown that plyometric exercises are as effective for hypertrophy in beginners and amateurs as strength training with weights.
. Combine the movements into supersets. Almost all leg exercises involve opposite muscle groups. For example, when you lower yourself into a squat, the muscles on the back surface of your thigh are tight, while when you lift yourself up, the muscles on the front surface of your thigh are tight. If you perform two movements on different muscle groups without resting, you can fatigue your muscles more and pump them faster.
What exercises can help you pump your legs without iron
We’ll list the basic movements that allow you to give your muscles a good workout without weights.
Bulgarian split squats
The movement is great for pumping the front of the thigh and provides a good glute workout. Stand with your back to a chair or other low support and put your toe on it. Place your hands on your waist or fold them in front of your chest – whatever is most comfortable.
Squat down until the thigh of a supported foot is parallel to the floor. If the heel is loose, step away from the support. When you come out of the squat, make sure your knee doesn’t wrap inward.