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Old 01-27-10, 02:30 PM   #1
zenwhipper
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R/L leg asymmetry, what to do?

Folks, been riding for about 5 years now, doing centuries and two day tours. I encorporate strength
trainining each year in my programs. What should one do about the difference between your
dominant leg and the weaker leg? I usually focus more strength training on my weaker leg (left)
but have not yet been able to make both legs equal. Is it important to have both legs the same strength?
Is it a waste of time, since your body will return to its normal asymmetrical 'sidedness' once you stop the
extra one leg training you do to keep both equal?

TIA!

Scott
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Old 01-27-10, 02:39 PM   #2
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Your only as strong as your weakest link. Its important to strengthen both the agonists and antagonists (front-back).

I have found that road cycling & weight training have equally put the same amount of strength & power into both legs.

Are you training/strengthening one leg over the other?
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Old 01-27-10, 02:59 PM   #3
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I use shims and wedges.

http://www.bikefit.com/products.php
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Old 01-28-10, 09:54 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by *****3nin.vend3t View Post
Your only as strong as your weakest link. Its important to strengthen both the agonists and antagonists (front-back).

I have found that road cycling & weight training have equally put the same amount of strength & power into both legs.

Are you training/strengthening one leg over the other?
I do train one leg over the other. In other words, during strength training I work my weak leg more and harder than the stronger leg by doing left only step ups, sqauts, knee extensions etc. But as of yet, I have seen marginal improvement in the weak leg. It would be nice to find a strength program that has built into it specific excercises to address R/L differences.

Thanks
Scott
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Old 01-28-10, 02:22 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by zenwhipper View Post
I do train one leg over the other. In other words, during strength training I work my weak leg more and harder than the stronger leg by doing left only step ups, sqauts, knee extensions etc. But as of yet, I have seen marginal improvement in the weak leg. It would be nice to find a strength program that has built into it specific excercises to address R/L differences.

Thanks
Scott
A good exercise for your concerns would be Bulgarian split squats.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZlod...eature=related


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_Q8FKO7Ueg

I wouldn't worry about it too much though... There is no such thing (from what I know) of a strength program that incorporates specific exercises to address R/L differences, but also try single legged leg presses. I think your on the right track of putting extra training into the weaker leg.
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Old 01-28-10, 05:00 PM   #6
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I just remembered. You may be interested in a book called: The Naked Warrior by Pavel Tsatsouline. I have the .pdf file if you want it. I would recommend you read that.
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Old 01-30-10, 04:08 PM   #7
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Simple one-legged pedaling exercises will make a major difference. That's all you need to do. They're best done on the trainer or rollers. It takes time. A single one-legged workout/week, varying from 15 minutes to 45 minutes, should fix it over a year's time.

It's possible that your leg strength difference is a result of differing leg length. Cleat shims will usually take care of that.
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Old 01-30-10, 07:29 PM   #8
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Agreeing with Carbonfiberboy, but you can also add in single legged squats with weights and lunges also work well. I've been training a lot of my clients with kettlebell training, and there are some great kettlebell exercises that will help work on strength development and power training.

It could also be leg length differences. I went to one workshop with Joel Friel and they broke out two identical scales. We stood on both simultaneously, and you could see if the scales came out even or if there was one side that weighed in heavier. It's a decent tool to spot check if you have the leg length issue or if you tend to favor one side over another.

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