Attaining a dream body does take time and tremendous efforts but the end result is worth every drop of sweat. A bulky body conjures images of ripped muscles of the arms and ribcage. But equally coveted are the teardrop muscles, thus named because of the shape. Its actual name is vastus medialis oblique (VMO). The location of this extensor muscle is just above the knee, on the inner side of the thighs.
The teardrop muscle apart from adding definition to the physique also provides the knees with much-needed stability.
Exercises that help build and strengthen the VMO or the teardrop muscle
A number of exercises help strengthen VMO muscles, a few of which are listed here.
Start with positioning the legs shoulder-width apart and then doing the normal double leg squat, lowering the body with arms crossed at the chest level, squatting as if trying to sit on an invisible chair. This position needs to be held for a few seconds and released slowly.
This squatting can be done with one leg too. Or even, it can be done on uneven surfaces, such as the rubber air disc or on a foam pad.
Other variations of the squats to strengthen VMO muscles include quarter squats – where a traditional squat is done but while coming up you should only come up a quarter of the way instead of completely.
Other variations include squatting on a wedge, on an inclined surface, with the toes facing towards downwards. A slow squat also helps develop muscles, wherein instead of doing a squat for 3 seconds, take 5 seconds to do it. Squatting lower than the usual level or doing knee bends against a wall can also make VMO muscles strong.
A lunge consists of taking one leg forward (from a standing position) till it forms a 90-degree angle and the rear leg is extended at the back, thus allowing the front leg thigh to be parallel to the ground. This position can be held for approximately 10 to 20 seconds, ensuring that the back is straight and knees are not bent.
A step up routine using a box or crate which is knee length, where one leg is placed forward on the box while standing a little away and driving the rest of the body weight forward, also exerts requisite pressure on VMO.
Resistance bands or machines can be used to carry out thigh extension exercises. The weight bar on the machine or band can be gradually increased as you sit in the chair with knees behind the weight and slowly try to lift it up.
Doing leg presses and short arc quads also define VMO muscles as do thigh contractions done in a sitting position.
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