Quad Building 101

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Anatomy of the Quadriceps

Let’s start off by explaining the anatomy of the quad.  It’s not very complicated and not much to it.  Once you understand how the quad works, you will find it easier to visualize your quad workouts.

The quads are made up of 4 muscles (vastus medialis, vastus intermedius, vastus lateralis, rectus femoris).

These 4 muscles are found on the front of the thigh. They originate at the top of the femur (largest bone in the leg) and attach down on the tibia.

The rectus femoris, however, is a little different in that it goes across the hip joint and originates on the pelvis itself. It is the combination of low body fat and massive muscle that gives you that nice cut teardrop look on stage. Without low body fat, your hard work will be distorted by fat and water.

The purpose of the quads is to straighten and extend the knee (think about a leg extension).

The purpose of the rectus femoris is to extend the knee, but it is also a hip flexor.


Different Parts of the Quad

Let’s start off by explaining and defining the quadriceps.  The term “quad” means four.  Therefore the quadriceps is made up of 4 distinct muscles.

The front of the quad is made up of the rectus femoris.  Directly underneath the rectus femoris is the vastus intermedius.  Then on either side of both you will find muscles that run parallel.  These are the vastus medialis (on the inside of the leg) and the vastus lateralis (on the outside of the leg).

Different Hamstring Exercises

  • Barbell Back Squats
  • Barbell Front Squats
  • Barbell Hack Squats
  • Bodyweight Sissy Squat
  • Weighted Sissy Squat
  • Quadriceps

  • Barbell Side Split Squats
  • Barbell Single Leg Squat
  • Dumbbell Squats
  • Bodyweight Jump Squat
  • Jefferson Squat
  • Zecher Squat
  • Smith Machine Squat
  • Smith Machine One Leg Squat
  • Leg Extensions
  • Barbell Step-Ups
  • Dumbbell Step-Ups
  • Close-Stance Leg Press
  • Wide-Stance Leg Press
  • Barbell Lunges
  • Dumbbell Lunges
  • Walking Barbell Lunges
  • Walking Dumbbell Lunges
  • Barbell Deadlifts
  • Dumbbell Deadlifts
  • Smith Machine Deadlift
  • Cable Hip Abduction
  • Cable Hip Adduction
  • Machine Hip Abduction
  • Machine Hip Adduction

Mass Building Hamstring Workouts

Here you will find numerous workouts that you can try in the gym. Give them a shot and see which works best for you. Remember, not all exercises or workouts will work for everyone, each person’s muscles respond differently to the stimulation of a workout; therefore, you will need to play with different exercises and different rep ranges.

Workout #1
Barbell Squats  3×8-12
Leg Press  3×8-12
Walking Lunges  3×8-12
Leg Extension  3×8-12

Workout #2
Barbell Squat  3×8-12
Barbell Front Squat  3×8-12
Barbell Deadlift  3×8-12
Barbell Step-Ups  3×8-12

Workout #3
Smith Machine Squat  3×8-12
Dumbbell Deadlift  3×8-12
Close-Stance Leg Press  3×8-12
Walking Dumbbell Lunges  3×8-12

Workout #4
Jefferson Squat  3×8-12
Smith Machine Deadlift  3×8-12
Wide-Stance Leg Press  3×8-12
Leg Extension  3×8-12

Workout #5
One-Leg Squat  3×8-12 (each leg)
Bodyweight Jump Squat  3×8-12
Hip Abduction  3×8-12
Hip Adduction  3×8-12


When it comes down to it you want to focus on the mind-muscle connection. You should really feel each rep and feel the muscle working. If you don’t feel an exercise in your quads, then you are probably doing it wrong or are using a weight that you can’t handle and are using more than just your quads.

Most of all have fun with your workouts. If you aren’t having fun, then what’s the point? Utilize what you learned in this course and see where it takes you. Good luck and see you at graduation!