While training in a commercial gym, you can’t help but notice that not all of the members there train their legs. The sight of someone with a really developed upper body and underdeveloped legs is not uncommon and you might even be the only person doing squats on a power rack. There are all kinds of excuses for this, starting with the one where their legs start hurting if they do squats or that other, non-muscle building activities such as running, are more than enough for their legs. Excuses are for quitters, so without further ado here are five reasons you should devote more time to your legs.
1. Extra Muscle!
Squats and deadlifts make your body produce more human growth hormone as well as testosterone, with efficiency that no other exercise can match. These exercises help you build muscle by producing hormones as well as the regular effect.
2. Bigger Upper-Body!
When you do squat and deadlifts, you don’t just develop your legs, but you entire body. When you squeeze the bar while doing these exercises, you develop your arms. Stabilizing your body and the weight while doing squats has a marked effect on your abs and your chest muscles are also tense when you do deadlifts. If you can’t do upper-body exercises because you’ve been injured, you can still do these exercises and keep your muscles from atrophying.
3. You Become Stronger!
Having a strong core and leg muscles will develop and put strength on your upper-body too, meaning you’ll be able to lift more with a better developed body. When you do bench presses, the leg drive is important because your stronger legs mean more leg drive and necessitate a bigger bench as well, which will make your muscles bigger. Doing deadlifts and squats makes your legs and your lower back stronger as well, and these are very important muscle groups when doing the overhead press.
4. Bodily Symmetry!
No matter what people say about body issues, having an overdeveloped upper body and thin, weak legs, does not look good and you should work to correct it.
5. Mental Benefits!
For most people, training their legs is a chore because it’s exhausting, both mentally and physically. However, doing deadlifts and squats will improve your physical condition as well as your mental endurance. It’s a great character building exercise.
Remember, running to build legs doesn’t count and activities such as jogging, cycling or playing a running sport like soccer or handball simply doesn’t have the effect that deadlifts and squats have. Make sure you do both of these exercises as often as necessary – you’ll be better at the other activities and you will also develop your upper body.