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Vastus Medialis on MedX Leg Press
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Richard Glover

Hi Dr Darden and everyone else,

Would the Vastus Medialis muscle still be worked efficiently on the MedX Leg Press machine or similar machine/s? Avoiding locking out the knees on the exercise, is the contraction in the quadriceps not sufficient enough to stimulate growth in this muscle (with sufficient intensity)? I am assuming that the Vastus Medialis only comes into action after completing an angle of less than 10/15 degrees contraction of the knee. Could this not take place on a leg press exercise?

Regards,

Richard
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Drew Baye

Florida, USA

I have heard this before, and mentioned it in an article, but recently have heard that it is not true. I need to look into this further.

It makes little sense to me that the muscle would only be involved in such a small portion of the movement. I would imagine that the vastus medialis would be as involved in the leg press as any of the quadriceps muscles.

I'll see what I can find out.

Drew Baye
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Acerimmer1

Richard Glover wrote:
Hi Dr Darden and everyone else,

Would the Vastus Medialis muscle still be worked efficiently on the MedX Leg Press machine or similar machine/s? Avoiding locking out the knees on the exercise, is the contraction in the quadriceps not sufficient enough to stimulate growth in this muscle (with sufficient intensity)? I am assuming that the Vastus Medialis only comes into action after completing an angle of less than 10/15 degrees contraction of the knee. Could this not take place on a leg press exercise?

Regards,

Richard


I've thought about this also. It doesn't concern me so much as I believe that the leg press doesn't optimally stress my rectus femoris. Hence I choose to perform another quad exercise anyway. For the reason you mention I make it leg extensions. That way I figure all bases are covered.
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Drew Baye

Florida, USA

I've noticed the same. My rectus femoris is noticeably larger when I do leg extensions regularly.

Drew Baye
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Acerimmer1

Drew Baye wrote:
I've noticed the same. My rectus femoris is noticeably larger when I do leg extensions regularly.

Drew Baye


I believe this is because it crosses the hip joint. So in the squat or leg press the knee is extended at the same time as the hip. I would suggest the two movements act to cancel each other out as far as the rectus femoris is concerned.

MRI also shows reduced involvement of the muscle in squats and leg presses as compared to leg extensions. PS any luck on that stuff Ryan Hall was saying about why MRI is not a valid tool for studying muscle activity.
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Drew Baye

Florida, USA

Most likely. Rather than shortening and lengthening during compound leg movements like the vastus lateralis, intermedius, and medialis, it maintains tension within a narrower length depending on the degree of knee extension relative to hip flexion. During a leg extension, it shortens further, and possibly more importantly, it stretches further while under tension.

I'll ask Ryan Hall again about the MRI.

Drew Baye
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Acerimmer1

Actually, now that you mention it I always found sissy squats with my ankles in one of those brace like contraptions seemed to hit my rectus femoris even better than leg extensions. But I also felt there was a reduced contribution from the vastus medialis this way aswell, which could be the reason why.
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manzo

Richard Glover wrote:
I am assuming that the Vastus Medialis only comes into action after completing an angle of less than 10/15 degrees contraction of the knee.


if i remember correctly dan riley said that the outside of the thigh begins the extension of the knee (from a flexed position) and the inside of the thigh completes the last part of the extension. il try and find where i read this to make sure this is what he wrote.

on the subject of muscles involved in the leg press, i read that the less upright the angle of the seat is the more emphasis is placed on the glutes, and the more upright the seat is more emphasis is on the thighs. can anyone confirm this and explain the reason why?

also is the lower back involved in the leg press?idv thought it is, albeit not to a great extent, as the lower back is involved in hip extension, but i want to make sure.
thanks
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bill1

California, USA

This came up in a discussion I had with Arthur about 10 years ago , I am trying to remember exactly what he told me. I do remember he used to have a freezer full of skinned human legs.

Bill
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Acerimmer1

alan1 wrote:
Richard Glover wrote:
I am assuming that the Vastus Medialis only comes into action after completing an angle of less than 10/15 degrees contraction of the knee.

if i remember correctly dan riley said that the outside of the thigh begins the extension of the knee (from a flexed position) and the inside of the thigh completes the last part of the extension. il try and find where i read this to make sure this is what he wrote.

on the subject of muscles involved in the leg press, i read that the less upright the angle of the seat is the more emphasis is placed on the glutes, and the more upright the seat is more emphasis is on the thighs. can anyone confirm this and explain the reason why?



Are you sure you've got that the right way around?

thanks
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manzo

when i wrote "the angle of the seat" i meant the angle of the back pad relative to the ground, which can be adjusted on the nautilus leg press. sorry if this confused things.

Acerimmer1 wrote:

Are you sure you've got that the right way around?

thanks


i read it in matt brzycki's books. this is a quote from one of them-
"as the back pad is positioned less upright, there is more emphasis on the gluteus maximus (buttocks)"
it doesnt say that if the back pad is positioned more upright more emphasis is on the thighs, i just assumed that in a vice verca kinda way.
ive looked but havent seen this mentioned anywhere else so i was hoping someone here could say whether its true or not and why?
thanks
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manzo

i found what i mentioned dan riley had wrote -
" There are four major muscle groups composing the quadriceps. Each of these muscles contributes as the leg is extended. The muscle on the outside of the leg begins the movement while the muscle on the inside the leg completes the straightening of the leg.....
....Some athletes never regain full development of the quad muscle on the inner thigh (medialis). This is because they do not perform leg extensions or they are not pausing in the contracted position."

taken from
http://www.houstontexans.com/...l.php?PRKey=758
in case anyone is interested in this
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Acerimmer1

alan1 wrote:
i found what i mentioned dan riley had wrote -
" There are four major muscle groups composing the quadriceps. Each of these muscles contributes as the leg is extended. The muscle on the outside of the leg begins the movement while the muscle on the inside the leg completes the straightening of the leg.....
....Some athletes never regain full development of the quad muscle on the inner thigh (medialis). This is because they do not perform leg extensions or they are not pausing in the contracted position."

taken from
http://www.houstontexans.com/...l.php?PRKey=758
in case anyone is interested in this


I think he must be right! It probably wouldn't be that hard to prove or disprove.
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Bill Sekerak

California, USA

It doesn't take a lot of thought to realize that you can only keep the quads under load in the extended position by doing extensions. with any compound movement involving the quads you cannot work the fully extended position.

Bill
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