squat vs leg press

I was wondering if doing the leg press is just as effective as doing squats?

I prefer the leg press because it is safer to do if I don’t have a partner and in my opinion easier on my knees.

What do you guys think? Just curious…

o my… here we go again.

They are both pretty effective. The only difference in my opinion is that squats allow for core work because your abs are stabilizing your body throughout the entire movement. Otherwise, they can be interchangable depending on the person/situation.

I asked a question comparing leg press and squat once, and the overwhelming majority voted for squat. I was doing leg press at the time due to a back problem. When I could do the squat again I was relieved…my quads and glutes etc. definately develop better with squatting.

Gotta to agree

If you can Squat do it. Take the time to learn it, love it and suck in the pain and do it.

It use to be main power lift now I have to limit due to lower back and knee problems. But I still love it.

i hope someone can answer my question on leg pressing.when doing LP i get a ripping sensation across my lower ab region,does anyone else get this and if so whats the deal?


No scientific reason - but it can’t be good.

Could be your illapsoas (spelling). But there are a few muscles etc that are around that area.

Do you feel this doing other exercises?

Are we forgetting … leg press does not build stabilizers.
Lets not even start taklking about the smith machine!

Did I tell you about how I once went from the leg-press to the smith-machine?

Did you finish with high rep 1 legged leg extension as well.

What if the leg press was combined with the stiff leg deadlift, and if the athlete was doing enough ab work every weak aswell?

Also, what does A: max stabilizer strength (barbell squats) contribute to sprinting that B:spacific stabilization (sprints/ plyometrics)
and c:max prime mover strength (barbell squats, machine squats, leg press) don’t?

Ben Johnson and Carl Lewis.

Spacific stabilization rating;

Carl lewis and Ben to a roughly equal degree.

Max prime mover strength.

Ben Johnson.

Max stabilizer strength.

Ben Johnson.

All other factors not accounted for. How much of Bens extra acceleration power could be accounted for the prime mover strength developement and how much for the stabilzer developement?

I still think squats are probably best weights exercise but that is becuase they kill 2 birds with one stone. Lets not forget that it’s possible to kill 2 birds with 2 stones, and some may prefer to.

The only thing that could impress me enough to never use the leg press is if somebody gives a truthfull account of becoming blatantly faster once they got rid of leg press and did barbell squats instead.

If you participate in a sport that involves running, you shouldn’t do leg presses. When running, the legs and back need to work synergystically. During the leg press, your back is stablized by the seat and therefore is not moving. No good. For bodybuilders it might be effective, but not athletes.

I thought Bodybuilders were athletes?:wink: Anyway, I see your point Ryan but I have to disagree. As much as I agree you should try and mimic as much of the movement of your sport as possible (ie. squats vs leg press), You can work both legs and back independently as long as you DO work them.

I haven’t read Charlie’s Speed Trap since about 10 years ago, but if I remember correctly, there is a section in the book where Charlie is talking about Ben’s back muscles being the size of one’s forearms. He goes on to say (I think) that Ben was also performing back extension exercises or I may have seen it on a doucmentary about Ben (can’t remember). In either case, it depicts that you can work them independently as long as you DO work them.


Bodybuilders aren’t athletes, they are beauty pageant contestants :slight_smile:

The problem with using “two stones to kill two birds” (multiple exercises to accomplish what squats accomplish) is that there are limited CNS reserves and trying to get the proper muscular and neural stimulation (especially during the competition period) while doing extra exercises may be problematic. So generally, I would recommend doing squats if at all possible. Not because they are ‘specific’ to sprinting - “all weight lifting is general” - but because it is the most efficient way to get the training effect.

I read a funny quote about bodybuilders the other day…

“Bodybuilders: Fit to do nothing”

hehehe. Chris good one!

X - agree

I was looking at not doing squats, until the other day, because they gave my knees and lower back the s____.

But we say athletes should do cleans. I would consider the answer for not doing those similar.

If you can do, if you can’t don’t

if you warm up properly squats are great. I could do them everyday. There’s no question. Much better than leg press. If you want to do them also then thats fine, but don’t substitute.