T Nation

Vertical Leg Press Danger?


Found a vertical leg press for pretty cheap at my local fitness equipment store. Thinking of picking it up to add to my home gym, but I'm curious if anyone here has either read or experienced any issue with compressive forces on the lower back with the vertical leg press?

Most leg presses are desgied at an angle, and even then I've heard of excessive force on the lower back, but I'm thinking that the lack of leverage when going completely vertical will mean less total force here.

Your thoughts?


I had one.

It sucked, very short/uncomfortable range of motion.

Maybe you will like yours.


Though that wasn't quite my question, I appreciate the input. Did you notice any inordinate pressure on your lower back using it compared to an angled leg press?


I'm helping you not to make an unwise investment, you should be smooching my coin purse.

But no more lower back stress than a conventional "angled" leg press done with proper form.


Again, I'm more concerned about back health than unwise investment here. I don't have the room for a full fledged leg press, and this would ultimately be more for the sake of variety than a primary movement. I've go the SSB, straight bars, trap bars, platforms, boxes of various heights, bands and chains. I've got the primaries covered on the lower body, and this just popped up on my radar as something cheap I could add to my garage for some variety.

Appreciate the input on back stress. If anyone else has any experience on this, feel free to contribute.


I have one and I love it. Vert. leg press is the old school way of doing things. My has more range of motion than a normal 45 degree leg press machine, but some have a short RM. The big thing is to not allow you lower back to curl up at the bottom. Guys think that they need to go deeper then they have to on these machines. Go down to where your thighs hit your belly and no deeper, if you start curling your butt up you're too deep. Have fun.



I hate the vertical leg press. You either have to flex your spine or bear the weight on your toes. Biomechancial insanity, no I do not think it's safe.


I had one for years. I hated that thing. It was so uncomfortable on my lower back. I tried selling it, but there were no takers. I eventually just put it out on the curb hoping someone would take it. But they didn't. Then on trash day I stood at my door and watched the trashman struggle with putting it in the truck. I'm sure he hated me that day, but I made up for it a few days before Christmas when I walked out and handed him $10.

Sorry for the story.


It brought a tear to my eye.


Lol this reminds me of the simpsons when homer was trying to get rid of a trampoline. Should have tried putting a bike lock on it.


Thanks for the input everyone. I'm gonna try it out to see how the ROM fits me. I'm at 5'9, and I've read from reviews from people at 5'8 that say it fit perfectly. If I run into the same issues people have noted, then I'll hafta 86 it.


I have often thought that the vertical leg press should be flip-flopped so that the seat or pad is on top and you push with your feet to the floor. This would be like a bent forward squat or backlift. At least then all the blood would not rush to your head.


Think about building a sloped back rest (or even better, an adjustable one.) Maybe a dense foam wedge, if the base is fixed.


Only used one, and hated it.


That's what she said.