Leg press but no gym

Beginning the off season 32 week plan and I don’t have access to a gym for leg press machine thanks to Covid. I have weights and a bench at home for squats etc but do you have a recommendation to replace the leg press?

I am doing weighted step-ups to replace the leg press. After multiple sets of squats, you will feel it!


We recommended the ViPR and KettleBell swings in October as an alternative plan to the leg press. Here’s the video demonstration the movements:

Due to the heavy nature of the leg press (often times pressing > 250lb) it is difficult to substitute out. The ViPR and KB exercises come at your cycling strength and conditioning with a different more ‘functional’ approach.

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Thanks Frank!

Thank you. Christopher Boer. Sent from my iPhone

I hope it’s okay to chime in here. Obviously do what these coaches recommend as this is what you are paying them for. I’m a PT and have been working with patients since March w/o a leg press machine. Ugh! Here is a list of some things I’ve done to compensate:

SLOW DOWN! - So for every leg exercise I give, I make the person do the concentric and eccentric part for 4 seconds each! One of my s/p ACL repairs tested better than his age-related norms after not having access to a gym, so it can work! You’ll miss out on the power aspect by slowing down, but you can do the other activities from the Secret Sauce (ie Hoping) exercises the coaches prescribe.

Exercise substitutions: Kettlebell deadlifts or swings (don’t slow these down!), Goblet Squats (hold at the bottom), Step Ups with weight, Bridges (single leg or bilateral) with a sandbag (if you have access), Heel Taps on a step, Single leg Squats, Single leg deadlifts, lunges or split squats.

Again, I hope it was okay to chime in. Please let me know if not as I’m new here and don’t know the social norms yet! I just know a lot of people have hit this roadblock this year.

I just do normal deadlifts. I don’t have enough dumbbell weight to handle the load, or rather good dumbbells, and don’t have Kettlebells, unfortunately. I do have a trap bar, so I load that up and just go with what I have. It’s not a direct substitution, but better than nothing, and deadlifts are always good (IMO).

I had been doing a set of weighted step ups onto a box with a set of dumbbells, but a cracked rib injury was firing too much. That was my first attempt at the leg press alternative.

Then I was able to borrow a barbell and plates from a shutdown gym for my home use. I’ve elected to use the barbell in a landmine arrangement, using a chain and hip belt for heavy belt squats, which appears to be a decent replacement for the leg press. 0 load on spine, shoulders, and no impact on the ribs. Loving this.

I now then also do a set of barbell/landmine deadlifts. Sometime switch this up to single leg deadlifts.

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