T Nation

Leg Extension Substitute?

#1

I’m enjoying your total body training program for advanced lifters. I’m working around some knees that are beat up from 20 years of powerlifting, skiing, and other things. I’ve found things I can do for the lower body performance quad work. I’m struggling a bit with the lower body quad pump work as the leg extensions will intermittently piss my knees off. I was thinking I could do either reverse sled drags or bike sprints for the quad pump work. Any other suggestions?

#2

Leg press?

Bulgarian split squats I think are one of the best for isolation and quad work, just not sure if your knees can tolerate.

#3

Both reverse sled drags and bike sprints are knee friendly and will give you a quad pump.

Any way you can do light single leg leg extensions?

#4

Thanks, I’m actually using these for the performance work Paul recommends in the program.

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#5

I hadn’t thought of trying the leg extensions using just one leg. I’ll give that a go and see how it does. Thanks!

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#6

If I’m not mistaken, the ACL are at risk in knee extension machine. Not really too sure since I just stopped using them at the slightest reason to avoid them. Just be careful and don’t keep pushing it I guess

#7

Body weight leg extensions:

You can still get a lot out of them even without the band.

There’s also what I call a ‘natural quad raise’. At least to begin with you’ll probably only be able to the eccentric without the aid of your arms. You can also rig a band up so you can get a lot of rep work in.

#8

These are great for quad pump if dealing with “advanced” knees. (Which we all eventually will)

They’re also pretty good for over all knee health as well. Basically turning a knee extension into a standing closed chain movement.

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#9

The above examples are good. The quad raise I show there in the video and the banded leg extension one is also a solid choice.

#10

Thank you everyone for the very helpful suggestions!

#11

By the way, if you do single leg extensions, make sure the working leg is in the middle of the leg pad. The leg closest to the machine does more work always, due to leverage, so you can make sure not to create an imbalance by shifting yourself so that the working leg is always in the middle.

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