T Nation

Does a bigger upper body come from leg workout?

I don’t want to get flamed for what I?m about to ask, because it does not apply to me. Ok. I was just wondering how much you think working your legs, weekly, effects your total upper body development. I asking this out of curiosity and as well as I know a few people who don’t work there legs, and have hovered around the same weigh for a bit. I know there is no specific answer, so let?s say on a scale from 1-10, how important is working your legs, in developing the upper body.

in what way? aesthetic? functional strength? overall development?

i can’t imagine NOT training legs, so i’m not really sure i guess…

If your focus is only on getting a nice upper body, you will never have a nice body.

Get your priorities straight. Bodybuilder, or gym rat without a clue (and a shitty physique)

Don’t start flaming me, i train my legs every week, and hard. i you can read thats what i said in the original post.

There are huge carry overs at play here. Many upper body exercises depend on a strong lower body. Here’s an example of what I am talking about. How are you going to build a big back if you don’t deadlift or do any of the OLY lifts, their variations or their supplementary exercises, for example? They require BOTH a strong lower and upper body.

It is obvious that doing lower body exercises such as squats can have a significant effect on development of your abs, obliques, lower back etc and there are carryover effects in other muscle groups that you wouldn’t even think were involved with squats.

Think you’ll be able to carry heavy weights without strong legs? Ever see a strong man competitor with skninny legs?

For that matter, ever see a truly big strong guy that doesn’t work his legs? They don’t exist and I think your friends are a great example of this.

For God sake’s you need to get some real friends.

Simply, what if my hams did not have the necessary strength available to allow me to pull a nice, heavy set of deads? My back certainly can’t do it alone. And if I’m unable to pull heavy deads, my back won’t grow.

Sure, I could do a “ton” of pullups, lat pulldowns, rows, etc. But my back has responded better from heavy deads than anything else.

Legs are also important in performing the bench press (well, somewhat!) - remember, you drive from your heals to the shoulders for a good bench.

What about the Oly lifts? No leg drive, no heavy or explosive Oly lifts. No growth.

AND, what about squats? It’s been said that squats have a sort of “anabolic” effect on the body. So, no heavy squats = no growth.

Ooops, I should have added at the end of my post:

You do the math. How important would you now consider leg work?

Patricia, I guess we feel the same way :slight_smile:

~2.

-Zulu

CGB: hehehe. What’s really funny is that we posted about the same time. :-))

I suggest you read Booming Biceps by Don Alessi…

No, at least not directly.

It’s possible to build the appearance of a great physique in absence of legwork, particularly if you already have a fair set of wheels prior to training.

Most leg exercises involve nearly the entire body; thus, growth hormone production is at a maximum after such a workout, but that doesn’t mean similarly intensive upper body work won’t have much the same effect.

It takes a serious strength disparity to invoke the body’s natural balancing mechanisms (which would slow upper-body growth). Say, to throw out a number, a 2 to 1 ratio between bench and squat.

DI

thanks, i’ll have to smack some sence into my friends. you have been very helpfull CGB abd Patricia

I would also like to add that heavy compound exercises like most leg, cause the body to repair and be ready for another beating , so to combat this you get a larger release of GH and test the days following training. Not to mention the adption process the CNS tries to make which increases the amount of pain you can take which benefits upper body raining as well.

Guru X

It’s a little bit of a tricky question, because there are some wheelchair-bound athletes with amazing upper body strength and development.

Also, you could argue that by NOT training the legs, you have better recuperation abilities in the areas you DO train.

I think the benefits are the (already mentioned) GH boost from training compound movements like squats, and the additional strength gains that a sturdy foundation will bring.

I wish it wasn’t so but I’ve seen so monsters (from the waist up) in the gym that had no legs whatsoever. It didn’t seem to slow down their development one iota and they were strong as hell. In fact I watched one of 'em today merrily rowing away with the barbell loaded with 315 lbs. At least the guy has big calves but it’s probably just good genetics. The majority of the guys look the same way at every gym that I’ve been to. Legs just aren’t a popular thing to work. Hurts too much.

Shit I hope not. I had to skip yesterdays leg workout cause my damn knees hurt too bad.
Seems like after every good leg workout I get in I’m unable to walk the next day… Not due to soreness but due to PAIN! It’s frustrating as hell, bad genes! I’ve been through physical therapy to no damn avail I stretch the toothpicks once a day and try to work them once a week but still they hurt. I’m going to get some braces soon and see if that helps.

MR, that’s about the most perceptive thing I’ve heard in a long time. It just plain hurts to much.

Calves are necessity for bent rows… without 'em, you fall over.

DI

I never had that thick powerful look until my squats and deads came up.
If your back and core were weak in the squat you’d turn hunchback and fall over, or at least get injured. You can’t just drop it or push out from under it like fronts, olympic lifts and deads.
I believe these exercises demand so much more from the body as a system that must work together. At some point we all have to train movements not muscles to prevent injuries etc.

Someone talk to Marc McDougal before they go apeshit about how u can’t have a weak lower body and a strong upper body…
bench’s 3something
squats 2something