Reverse Hack Squat Muscles Worked

Reverse Hack Squat Muscles Worked

Written by Ben Bunting: BA, PGCert. (Sport & Exercise Nutrition) // British Army Physical Training Instructor // S&C Coach.


When performing a reverse hack squat, you work both your upper and lower body muscles.

Although it is difficult to understand and perform at first, it is a great way to strengthen your whole body.

Performing this exercise can also help you develop a more athletic and capable body.

Compound Exercise

The reverse hack squat is a great way to target the legs in a safe, compound movement. This exercise is performed on a machine that shifts the action from the lower back to the legs.

This exercise targets the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, calves, and outer thighs. It is an alternative to the stiff-legged deadlift and isolates these muscle groups. The quadriceps are also a key muscle group involved in extending the knees.

The reverse hack squat can be a great cardiovascular workout, but requires a little skill to execute properly. 

Barbell Squat Similarities

The reverse hack squat is similar to the barbell squat, except the body is placed facing the machine instead of leaning against it. Instead of leaning against the machine, the back is free to move backward, as in the barbell squat.

The weight is distributed across the quadriceps, hamstrings, back, and glutes, but the weight is distributed over the entire body instead of a single joint.

Aside from hitting the quads, the reverse hack squat also hits the adductors, which is one of the most common causes of knee pain in athletes. Similarly, it is equally effective on glutes, making it a valuable workout to add to your routine.

There are many variations of the hack squat, and the exact focus on the quads and calves can vary. Choosing the right foot placement for your hack squat can determine the focus of the exercises.

Using a wide foot placement or narrow foot placement will put more focus on the quads and hamstrings, while placing your feet high on the platform can place almost all of the weight on the quads. 

Another popular variation is to place the feet on a bench behind the hack squat machine. This will increase the intensity of the exercise and force your glutes to work harder than the quads.

The Hamstrings

The reverse hack squat is a great way to tone your hamstrings. A recent study showed that 82% of college students had tight hamstrings. The reason is not entirely clear, but it's likely that prolonged sitting causes hamstring pain.

The hamstrings are located at the back of the leg. They are involved in knee flexion and hip extension. In everyday activities, they work together with other muscles called glutes to bend the knee and extend the hip joint.

In addition, they work together with other muscles to pull the heel back and up. Ultimately, the hamstrings are involved in all types of movement and are crucial to a good body composition.

While the hamstrings are one of the most important muscles of the posterior chain, they are often neglected. But, the reverse hack squat is a great exercise that helps to strengthen and tone your hamstrings and quadriceps. 

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The glutes

The reverse hack squat is a great exercise for your glutes. This type of squat hits the adductor magnus, adductor brevis, and Vastus medialis. These are important leg muscles that provide stability and pelvic alignment during lifts. 

While the reverse hack squat is a great workout for the glutes, there are some variations you can do to focus on different muscle groups. One variation is called the good morning reverse hack squat, where the trainee stands further away from the pad to bend at the waist. 

Another variation of the reverse hack squat is to point the toes outward when performing the exercise. This makes the quadriceps' workload lessened and the glutes' work more efficiently. While this variation is more difficult at first, practice with it until it becomes natural.

There are many variations of the hack squat, but the basic principle is the same. Regardless of the type of hack squat you choose, you should focus on proper foot placement for optimal results. 

The Lower Back and Core

Squatting can be a great way to increase your strength. It works tons of muscles and releases muscle building hormones. If done correctly, it is safe for your lower back. But improper form can cause injuries.

The reverse hack squat is similar to the traditional hack squat, except that the feet are placed on a foot platform instead of on the floor. The body is supported by a side handle, also known as a safety bar.

To start, place your legs flat on the foot plate, toes pointed out. Then, lean forward until your shoulders press against the shoulder pads. Once your shoulders are in place, you may bend your knees slightly and lift your chest and knees up.

This exercise, like a traditional squat is a great way to develop and strengthen the core region which includes the lower back.

The predomininant musculature engaged includes erector spinae, the transversus abdominis, multifidus, internal oblique, pelvic floor, rectus abdominis and external obliques.

Muscles Worked During Reverse Hack Squat Conclusion

Hack squat is a functional training movement that can help you build a stronger back and lower body. It specifically stimulates hamstrings, glutes and the quads muscles.

Unlike free weight squats, the reverse hack squat uses less weight to lift and puts less pressure on the spinal column. With the right technique, this exercise can be extremely effective in building strong and lean muscles.

In order to perform a squat correctly, your legs must be parallel to the floor. Your hips must be slightly flexed to keep your torso straight while lowering your body. This is important to avoid slouching forward, which can result in "leaking strength" for the lift.

The reverse hack squat is a great way to build strong quads and other muscle groups, while increasing strength and explosive energy. You should include the exercise in your workout schedule to achieve maximum results.

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