With hundreds of different muscles in the human body why is it that so many people talk about strong legs after they turn 50? While the answer to this question can vary, I’d say it’s because strong legs can make life easy just as weak leg can make life difficult.
Let me explain…
Strong legs are required to lift up items from the floor, quickly get up and down steps, hike on vacation, ride a bike, play sports and hundreds of other activities. Whether you enjoy gardening, sports, running, biking with a friend or playing on the floor with children strong legs are required.
It’s fair to say that strong legs are almost mandatory for us to enjoy life to its fullest…
There are two leg exercises that you must master if you plan on having strong and mobile legs. Master these two exercises and you’ll soon notice that the everyday stuff of life gets even better.
While you’ve likely heard of these two exercises before, pay close attention to HOW to perform them. Nine out of ten adults will perform them with improper form. Improper form leads to injuries, not new strength.
Exercise #1 SQUAT
The squat is so common that nearly everyone skips over the proper technique. This often leads to painful knees and overly sore muscles which is not the goal for any of us. We want to feel strong, not beat up.
Follow the steps below to ensure your squat is up to par and giving you the strength you deserve.
Step 1: Start by standing tall with your feet about hip width apart; toes can be slightly pointed out or straight ahead.
Step 2: Start to sit your hips back as if you’re going to sit into a chair.
Step 3: As you are lowering into the squat make sure your back stays straight and your heels stay down. It’s also helpful to reach your hands out in front of you for a counter balance.
Step 4: Sit as deep into the squat as you can while keeping your back straight and heels down. It’s very important that you’re not rounding your back on the way down.
Step 5: Once you get to the bottom, drive your feet into the ground and stand up tall. It’s important to note, make sure that your toes and heels are not lifting off the floor.
Keep in mind not everyone will be able to squat deeply in the early stages of the squat. Some will require a lot of practice before getting deep into this position.
Repeat the squat 10-15 times.
Exercise #2 HINGE
The hinge movement is another amazing exercise for your legs and hips. The hinge, like the squat, is used everyday by humans so we can easily argue both movements are mandatory when you train your legs. We’ll also explain the difference between the squat and hinge exercises since they are easily confused.
Follow the steps below to get the perfect hinge.
Step 1: Start by standing tall with your feet about hip width apart, toes can be slightly pointed out.
Step 2: Keep your back straight while you hinge at your hips by pushing your butt to the wall behind you. You’ll notice in the picture above that during the hinge the knees bend less than they do in the squat. The picture on the right is the hinge movement, while the picture on the left is the squat.
Step 3: As you’re hinging back keep your eyes slightly forward and keep your back straight and go back as far as you comfortably can. Your shoulders should NOT go as low as you hips.
Step 4: Once you reach the end of your range of motion and you’ll know when you reach it because of the stretch in the hamstrings and backside, stand up by driving your feet into the ground. It’s also very important to remember your toes and heels stay pressed into the floor.
Repeat for 10-15 reps
You can perform these two movements every day to work towards new strength and mobility. You will hold a weight (dumbbell, kettlebell, etc.) to make both movements more challenging at some point.
And for those in the 50+ community who want a highly effective done-for-you workout, you’re in luck if you live near the South Hills of Pittsburgh…
This January we’re launching a new fitness program that is specifically designed for busy adults in the 50+ community for those those who truly don’t have the time to waste on ineffective workouts.
We’re calling this incredible new training program A50.
As you may have realized, 99% of fitness programs do NOT specialize in training the busy adults in the 50+ community.
The busy person in the 50+ community deserves a program that is specifically designed for their specific body and goals. Our new A50 workout will be challenging but also smart at the same time.
You won’t find high impact or overly aggressive exercises in A50. All of the exercises used in A50 will be zero impact to ensure your joints feel as great as the rest of your body.
This program will officially launch Monday, January 8th. While the original 30 spots are taken we did decide to add 7 more spots.
To learn more about this incredible program email us at info@FuseFitnessStudio.com. We’d be happy to tell you more about this exciting new program that is designed specifically for busy adults like you.