The hack squat is an excellent compound movement that targets all of the upper legs. Completed with a machine, it puts the most emphasis on your quads, but also hits the hamstrings and glutes (butt).
: Strength, Toning
How to do Machine Hack Squats:
- Select/adjust the weight (almost all hack squat machines are plate loaded, meaning you load the weights on yourself). Place your back and torso against the rear pad of the machine and place your shoulders under the shoulder pads. Your feet should be shoulder width apart, with your arms on the side handles of the machine.
- Disengage the safety bars. Each machine varies, some disengage using the handles, others require you to lift off the platform and then push out the handles. If you’re not sure, ask for assistance.
- With your knee’s slightly bent (never locking them out straight), slowly lower the weight by bending your knees with your back flat against the pad, looking straight forward to maintain posture. Continue down, but don’t ever let your knees go past your toes.
- Push yourself back up, mainly using the heel of your foot as you straighten your legs. Keep a slight bend in your knees throughout, never locking them completely until you’re finished with the required number of reps.
- After each set, make sure to properly lock the machine for safety.
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