T Nation

leg strength/flexibility

This is primarily aimed at Coach Davies, but I would appreciate feedback from anyone. I have had problems developing strength and flexibility in my legs for quite a while now. To give some background info, I’m 19 years old, 5’9, and 150 lbs, but I look more like I’m about 165-170 lbs, and I think I would be if my legs were proportional to the rest of my body. My quads are only around 20 inches, while my calves are 15 1/2. I eat 3 regular meals and have 3 protein shakes a day, with a decent amount of fruits and veggies, and around 200+ g of protein overall. I train legs twice a week, usually with glute-ham raises, reverse hypers, stiff-legged deads, squats, lunges, and sprints. My hamstrings have improved a lot recently, but not my quads (I plan to start using hack squats and front squats). I also do a workout every night with one set of high-rep dumbell snatches and lunges, and then stretches. However, I don’t seem to be increasing my flexibility much, and I have been pulling muscles often in the past year (hip flexors and glutes). I do workout with good intensity, but it seems like every time I start to improve, I pull a muscle and have to miss a week or two. I want incorporate snatches and cleans, but I’m not sure if that would be a good idea given my poor flexibilty. In one of your previous articles, you mentioned that your flexibility routines are more intense than many workouts. I would love to hear what types of exercises they include, or any other suggestions on how to improve flexibility, and leg strength. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Well your observations offer tremendous insight into your dedication. The development of a athlete is much like a wheel, with each attribute needing to be developed. In your case, it sounds like your flexibility is hindering. Range of motion is imperitive for an athlete if he/she to attain there goals. I use a wide variety of dynamic stretchs (ROM drills) + static stretches. I look forward to hearing from you. In faith, Coach Davies

Hopefully you can get the stretching program from Coach Davies for your flexibility. Just thought I’d mention the legs often take lots of food and total mass development to grow. At 5’9 150 you’re a little on the light side. With the volume of work it sounds like you do it’ll take a lot of quality calories to put on size but once you do you’ll probably find the mass and overall leg development, strength, and power improving substantially.