Isometric exercises can have a significant impact on the leg muscles for exercisers of all levels. Isometric exercises are anaerobic exercises that place stress on a muscle without shortening or lengthening the muscle and without any joint movement. Isometric exercises can be done with or without additional resistance, which makes them convenient for exercisers who like to workout at home.
Benefits of Isometric Leg Exercises
- Improve muscular strength in the legs
- Can help individuals jump higher
- Can help individuals run faster
- Can help individuals who have limited range of motion in their legs
- Can help those who might be recovering from injuries to the joints or connective tissues
- Can improve sticking points, which are points in a range of motion that are the most difficult for individuals to get past
- Wall Squats – To begin, stand with your back against the wall and your feet about shoulder width apart. Place your arms out in front of you and slowly squat down until your legs are parallel to the ground. Hold this position for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat 3 to 5 times.
- Wide Legged Squats – This type of squat can be done with or without a wall. It places more emphasis on the glutes and hamstrings than the traditional squat. Place your feet as far apart as you can, but still being able to perform a squat. Slowly lower yourself until your knees are bent 90 degrees and hold for 15 to 20 seconds. Repeat 3 to 5 times.
- Calf Raises – Stand with your legs together and hands down to your sides. Push up on your toes until you can’t elevate any higher. Hold this position for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat 3 to 5 times.
- Leg Hold – Sit on a chair with the back of your knees off the edge of the seat. Lift your legs and feet by straightening them so that they become parallel with the ground. Hold this position for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat 3 to 5 times.
- Hip Adductions – Sit on the adductor machine and place your feet on the foot levers. Rest your inner thighs against the thigh pads. Pull the release pin, which will allow you to spread your legs as far as possible. Lock in the release pin once you’ve reached your maximum range of motion. Squeeze on the thigh pads as you push until you close your legs. Once the thigh pads come together, hold that position for 15 to 20 seconds. Repeat 3 to 5 times.
- Hip Abductions – Site on the abductor machine, with your legs closed and the outside of your thighs resting against the thigh pads. Push on the pads until your legs are spread as far apart as possible. Hold this position for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat 3 to 5 times.
- Leg Curl – Sit down with your back against the back pad. Extend your legs and place your feet on the padded foot lever, which is located directly in front of you. Adjust your seat so that your lower legs, just above the ankles, are on the padded foot lever. Next, lower the thigh pad until it’s firmly against your thighs. Grab hold of the two handles on top of the thigh pad. Push on the padded foot lever downward, with your lower legs, and try to kick your buttocks. Once your legs are almost completely curled backward, hold that position for 10 to 15 seconds and repeat 3 to 5 times.
The following cautions should be taken into consideration when doing isometric leg exercises:
- If you have issues with high blood pressure, seek medical clearance before participating in isometric exercises. This type of training elevates blood pressure due to the strenuous holds for a duration of time.
- Properly warm up for about 10 minutes
- If you have any pain, cease exercising and seek a medical professional for proper diagnosis of the pain.