In this video, Kaged Muscle athlete and IFBB pro Fouad Abiad shares some of his tips to maximize the machine hack squat exercise.
Throughout his years of training, he’s seen a number of folks in the gym butcher their squat form.
By utilizing these simple tips, Fouad thinks you’ll be able to make your leg training more effective so you can put on more muscle mass over time.
Tip 1: Foot Placement
Fouad sees a lot of people put their feet at the top of the platform on the hack squat machine.
When you do this, you end up working your hamstrings more than your quads.
So, if you’re hack squatting to grow bigger quads, you want to make sure your feet are placed underneath you.
Tip 2: Depth
If your sole purpose for hack squatting is to maximize quad development, a 90 degree bend in the knee that places your legs parallel to the floor is where you want to be.
If you want full lower body development, you’ve got to squat all the way down. Your butt should come close to touching your heels.
Tip 3: Resistance Bands
Most of the time people think using resistance bands is stupid, and when one does use bands they’re just showing off.
However, there is actually a purpose to using bands.
If you’re performing hack squats, loop the ends with one end on the bar and the other as far away from the bar on the machine as possible.
When you utilize resistance bands, there’s no additional tension on the muscle when you’re in the most vulnerable position of the lift (at the bottom of the movement). But as you lift the weight back up, the band creates tension and provides more of a challenge the closer you get to lock out.
Tip 4: Push with Your Heels
If you watch most people squat closely, you’ll notice that their heels might come off the ground or platform slightly. You don’t want this to happen.
When you allow your heels to lift up, the tension of the weight travels up the shin, through the knee joint, and impacts the quad tendon. It might not become an issue at first. But as you start going heavier and get older, you’ll risk injury and joint pain.
Drive through the heel.