Hack squats in the simulator

The hack machine gained great popularity as soon as the fitness bikini nomination came into fashion. A number of trainers even write that sane buttocks cannot be done in a hook. But stubborn kinesiologists insist that people squat without exercise machines just as much until the equipment gets up. Is it really impossible for beginners to squat in a hook and what is the catch of this common exercise ">


  • 1 Technique
    • 1.1 Starting position
    • 1.2 Movement
  • 2 Recommendations
  • 3 Staging and loading
  • 4 What muscles work
  • 5 Pros and Cons of Squatting in Gakka
  • 6 Exercise Preparation
  • 7 Inclusion in the program
  • 8 load dosage
  • 9 Leg training including hack machine
  • 10 How to replace
  • 11 Conclusion

Execution technique

Starting position

  • Stand on the simulator platform in a rack that is comfortable for a regular squat. It should be possible to take the knees in the same direction with the socks to the sides and lower the pelvis if we squat, pressing the back to the back;
  • Next, the back is placed in an emphasis in the back, the levers rest on the shoulders. It is necessary to activate the press, pulling it a little inward, but not to remove the natural deflection of the spine completely;
  • The head rests on the pillow with the back of the head, the shoulders are under the levers, the limiters are removed with your hands.


  1. It is necessary to begin to lower due to flexion in the knee joint;
  2. The movement continues as long as it is possible to bend the knee and feel comfortable;
  3. Someone crouches in parallel, someone lower, it depends on the state of the hip and knee joints. If there is no discomfort in them, the heels do not come off during movement, there is no reason not to crouch in full amplitude;
  4. During movement, the hands hold the handles;
  5. From the bottom point, you should smoothly straighten the legs in the knee and hip joints, and then stand back;
  6. The number of repetitions is determined by the plan, the athlete should, if possible, perform all repetitions in the same technique.


  • Amplitude and technique are highly dependent on athlete anthropometry. People with a long thigh and a short leg are not recommended to squat with the back to the back in the Gakka simulator. They can do this facing the back, pulling the pelvis back strongly to avoid injury to the knee joint. Such people, ideally, need to put the squat technique with the barbell before they perform any bodybuilding variations. Requires the skill of controlling the body with muscles, and the complete elimination of spinal overload;
  • You can pit the feet in different ways, but all this for those who use relatively small weights in training and a sane approach. Any setting of the feet will affect the ligaments of the knee joint and may contribute to their injury if this setting is not natural for humans. To determine the natural is simple - you need to jump from a support or from a bench and look;
  • It is also important how an athlete can squat with a barbell. If the amplitude in the joints does not allow you to sit with a mobile projectile so that the pelvis is below the knees, perhaps this movement should not be performed at all.
  • It is not recommended to tear your back from the back of the simulator;
  • Do not bend much in the lower back;
  • It will be better if the heels, too, will not move and come off during the exercise


  • The center of gravity should lie in the middle of the arch of the foot, the athlete during the exercise does not move to the toes and does not change the position of the body, trying to lean forward. If this happens, you should change the exercise, this craving is not quite suitable for obtaining the desired training effect.

Staging and loading

The high and narrow position of the feet carries the load on the biceps of the thighs and buttocks, but only people with a thigh of approximately the same length as the lower leg can safely squat in this position. If you do not belong to them, you should be more careful in choosing exercises. It is better to take the option with your back to the hall, and not to the back of the simulator;

"Sumo" allows you to shift the load on the medial heads of the quadriceps, but in most cases, adductors are included in this technique;

The anatomical stance distributes the load between quadiceps and biceps trouble relatively evenly.

What muscles work

The main movers here are quadriceps and hip biceps. With a good amplitude in motion, the buttocks turn on. The calf and soleus also work in this version of the squat. Erroneous is the opinion that the squat in Gakka is for beginners. An ordinary person with office work does not have the necessary mobility in the ankles and hip joints and therefore should not crouch in Hakka.

The error stems from the fact that the simulator turns off the press and back. Many people find it easier to squat. However, such a squat is not natural for a person. In everyday life, we sit down and stand up with a slight tilt of the body forward with contracted muscles of the back. We need to activate these muscles in order to maintain balance.

The back is turned off not for the prevention of injuries and not for rehabilitation, but in order to achieve the goals of bodybuilding. With the squat in Gakka they want to “turn on” their legs and “turn off” the transverse abs and latissimus dorsi maximally from the process. This is necessary in order to get a load that does not increase the width of the waist. All this is true only for professional athletes, their training volumes and means of recovery. And an ordinary amateur who came to strengthen his muscles and improve his appearance, but not become a bodybuilder, should not worry about this. He is still not destined to “swing the waist” with ordinary strength exercises.

Pros and cons of squatting in Gakka

Typically, such questions are asked by people practicing without a trainer or with an inexperienced instructor. Fundamentally, the free-weight squat differs from the Hack machine in biomechanics. In a squat, the weight of the bar is relatively evenly distributed between the back and hips, especially in the technique that is safe for lifting.

In a hack machine, he puts full pressure on his shoulders, is projected onto his hips and exerts a fairly significant load on his knees.

The pros and cons of the hack can be summarized as follows:

  • Variation is good for bodybuilder goals. It allows you to load your legs with reduced “kickback” in the back, and get a fairly high-quality workout without using huge weights and the metabolic stress associated with such practice;
  • Exercise can be used for those who are trying to get the skill of gray with a vertical back, but can not keep their balance with the barbell placed on top of the trapezoid. At the same time, such a person can bend his hips and knees in principle, and sit in full sed with a low barbell;
  • The movement is suitable for those who need something to “finish off” their legs after regular squats, and the leg press is not suitable due to the unstable position of the lower back or some other similar factor;
  • The simulator is considered safer to perform drop sets and supersets, but is not intended to squat with rubber shock absorbers in it. Although for the version of the squat with a rubber shock absorber around the hips, the hack is more suitable than the barbell, since it allows you to activate the thigh;
  • A significant minus of Hakka is that he cannot replace squats with a barbell on his back and chest, but he is often used as a replacement, so people who practice such things rarely make significant progress. They can suffer both from their ignorance, and because the coach convinced him of the need to "isolate his legs and exclude his back from movement." Recall that it’s worth doing this only after the back muscles have strengthened. It is not necessary to perform squats in Gakka with huge weights, the same applies to the barbell. But the harmonious development of the body gives only a combination of basic movements with free weight and exercises in simulators.

Exercise Preparation

Ideally, the practitioner should be able to squat without a barbell in full sediment, perform a cup squat, and a sedan with a barbell on his chest and on his back. The first exercise in the Hack plan is only in one case - a person is engaged in bodybuilding, not fitness, and came to purposefully swing his legs without turning on his back.

If the squat in Gacca is the first exercise of the plan, you should actively warm up. First you need to roll the hips and buttocks on a foam roller, after the MFR - walk along the treadmill or pedal the exercise bike. And only after that it is necessary to begin to perform a special warm-up.

The simulator is quite heavy in itself, so beginners will have to exclude the option when they immediately move to the simulator and begin to squat. Their task is to sit down a couple of sets without weight, and only then start working in the simulator.

Otherwise, it is not recommended to start immediately with a working weight, you need to do 1-4 warm-up approaches. The greater the working weight, the longer the warm-up will be. If submaximal weights are used, and the exercise is not the first, warm-up approaches need to be done anyway.

Program Inclusion

Many believe that auxiliary exercises in the plan are not needed, and it is enough to do one base. This is not true.

Work in a hack simulator can:

  • Help with the development of lagging legs if the athlete crouches with significant involvement of the back;
  • Strengthen the quadriceps and biceps of the hips;
  • To improve neuromuscular communication and to accustom a person to the movement itself - bending the legs in the knee joint. This is practiced if a person has no problems with flexibility, but he does not get bored due to the lack of neuromuscular communication

Like any other work in the simulators, the hack is included in the training as necessary, that is, in order to achieve a specific goal - to improve squats or to load more legs.

A variation of the exercise is the reverse squat in Gakka, that is, the movement in which the pelvis is pulled back and the face is directed to the back of the simulator. For many, this exercise is more like a forward bend with a barbell, but it is often used as the main one in women's training.

Load dosage

Training volume is measured in the number of lifts. So for the fitness enthusiast's training sessions, which take place without the involvement of pharmacology, there is a maximum working volume. Exercises for one muscle group should not be performed in more than 12 working approaches. In practice, 4 exercises are usually chosen and they are done in 3 approaches.

Leg workout including hack machine

Attention - the work "on failure" is recommended only to those who are engaged in bodybuilding and can connect a variety of recovery tools. Amateurs and beginners have enough of the usual set-repeat schemes.

In such training, isolation is usually minimized. The athlete starts with a squat with a barbell, then goes to Gakku, then - performs 1 isolating exercise for the biceps of the hips and quadriceps.

If the workout focuses on the back of the thighs, it is recommended that you start with the deadlift option and then turn on the hack machine.

Interesting fact! The simulator was invented by the Russian athlete and trainer Georg Gakkenshmidt and the machine was one of the first leg simulators known to mankind.

How to replace

It is believed that if the hall is poorly equipped, you can replace the exercise only with free-weight movements, including short lunges forward.


The simulator can be used both in strength training and in ordinary fitness, provided that a person can squat in principle.