T Nation

Left Leg Smaller Than Right


I had my torn left acl repaired ~16 months ago. My left thigh is now 24.5" and my right is 25.5". The lateral head of the quadriceps seems much smaller on the left side than the right. The overall thickness of the quadricep is also noticeably smaller.

Should I stop training my right leg completely until this is resolved and focus on unilateral movements? Any of you had similar problems?


No, I would recommend exercising both legs with equal resistance. The point is to bring your left leg up to match your right, not to atrophy your right leg to match your left.


Throw some single leg work in there. Just do a couple extra sets on the smaller leg.


I'm the same way from YEARS of skateboarding.

I like TheTruth24's advice above.


I have been doing both. I feel like the right leg is compensating for the left leg in all my heavy lifts, resulting in a greater stimulus for it to grow even more. When I squat or leg press heavy, my right quadricep is always sorer than my left.


Focus on unilateral movements but keep the weight the same. The goal is for both legs to get stronger overall AS WELL AS to bring them into proportion. A one inch in difference should take forever to bring up especially if they were both the same size previously. That goes back to muscle memory.


I think you meant shouldn't take forever here.


Years ago when i first started lifting, my left leg was a full inch smaller than my right. I have no idea why, that's just where I started from.

I corrected the problem in about 3 months. My lower body days went like this:

Squat - 6 work sets
Leg press - 6 work sets
Unilateral leg extension, left leg only - 3 work sets
Unilateral leg curl, left leg only - 3 work sets
Stairmaster 20 min

You should be able to catch up quicker than I did. Muscle memory is the truth.


I hope he doesn't mean "should take forever."