Here’s one way to make leg day even better: supersize it. “Reciprocal supersets increase training density, allowing you to pack more volume into less time. This not only makes your workout more efficient, it also means you’re increasing training volume within a given session, which can enhance muscle development,” explains Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D., C.S.C.S, an assistant professor of exercise science at Lehman College in the Bronx, NY.

The concept is fairly simple: Work one muscle group (agonist) while the opposing one (antagonist) rests, then switch the order.

For legs, this may mean focusing on quads for one move (with squats or a leg press), followed promptly by a hamstring-centric move like a deadlift or ball curl.

“Studies indicate that by contracting an agonist muscle, you can actually increase force output during subsequent contractions of the antagonist,” adds Schoenfeld.

These two workouts are based on Schoenfeld’s book, Strong & Sculpted:

  • Warm up with five to 10 minutes of light cardio
  • Do one set of the first exercise, followed immediately by its superset pair.
  • Rest 1 1⁄2 to 2 minutes,
  • Repeat with the two additional supersets.

You can also sub in other moves to progress the workout. 

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More ways to superset

Looking for more variety in your workout? Try subbing in some of the moves below. Just make sure you’re adding a balance of quad- or hamstring-focused exercises where appropriate.

SUPERSET A (Quad-dominant)

  • Barbell front squat
  • Bulgarian split squat
  • Dumbbell or barbell lunge
  • Dumbbell stepup
  • Leg extension

SUPERSET B (Hamstring-dominant)

  • Glute bridge
  • Cable glute kickback
  • Hyperextension
  • Machine kneeling leg curl
  • Seated leg curl 

Shot on location at Matrix Fitness Club, Astoria, NY

SEE ALSO: Whitney Wiser’s Stronger, Leaner Legs Workout