The Best Leg Press Machines of 2023 for Effective Lower-Body Workouts

woman using leg press

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Fitness enthusiasts and athletes are well aware of the importance of lower-body training to help them meet their overall fitness goals—after all, your legs make up half of your body. That's why making a decision on what shoes to train in or the type of squat rack to train with are so important. That same approach should be applied to all aspects of lower body training, including the best leg press machine for your individual goals. The best leg press machine can help users build muscle and get stronger by allowing them to isolate their quadricep muscles in a safe and effective way.

The Best Leg Press Machine - Our Top Picks

Whether you want the leg press to help you warm up before you step into a power rack for more serious work or as an accessory to running or cycling training, the best home leg press machine makes all the difference. But with several versions of the leg press available, it can be hard to discern which is right for you. That’s why we researched the 8 best leg press machines out there so you can start building muscle and making gains ASAP.

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Best Overall Leg Press Machine - Rogue ISO Leg Press

Rogue ISO Leg Press


  • Machine type: 35-degree leg press machine
  • Weight capacity: 2,475 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 98" L, 64" W, 47" H
  • Footprint: 43.5 sq. ft.


The Rogue ISO Leg Press can be a great asset for all athletes regardless of the goals they have. The weight capacity should be enough for everyone, it's very durable, and there’s plenty of room for you to work with both the sled plates and the seat. Comfort and range of motion won't be an issue with this one. We also like that you can train one leg at a time or both simultaneously—great for a triset exercise where you complete a leg press with each leg individually, then together.

The Rogue ISO Leg Press is made in the USA, has a two-angle foot deck, and comes with spring-loaded stop handles. You can go as heavy as you want without concern that the machine will give out, plus there are weight pegs for storage of extra plates.

What We Like

  • Machine arrives fully assembled
  • High-weight capacity
  • Lumber seat is adjustable for personal comfort based on height and angle
  • Bilateral/unilateral sled allows the user to work on each leg as well as both at the same time
  • 2-angle foot deck helps the user focus on individual muscle groups as desired

What We Don't Like

  • Massive footprint
  • Sled alone is 182 lbs., which may be too much for some beginners

BUY: Rogue ISO Leg Press

Best Vertical Leg Press Machine - Titan Fitness Vertical Machine

Titan Fitness Vertical Machine


  • Machine type: Vertical leg press
  • Weight capacity: 400 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 48" L, 38" W, 52.5" H
  • Footprint: 12.6 sq. ft.


The vertical leg press is designed to be safer for the lower back while placing more emphasis on the posterior chain muscles such as the glutes and hamstrings. This is another machine that doesn't require much space, and it could be a better choice for runners because of the focus on the back of the legs. And the Titan Fitness Vertical Machine has dual posts so you can feel the weight on each leg, and the handles are simple to turn in or out to un-rack or re-rack the sled. There are different starting points available based on height, and the steel frame will keep the machine stable while it's in use.

What We Like

  • Diamond-plated footplate will help prevent slipping
  • There are 3 weight posts for greater weight distribution
  • Price tag makes it budget-friendly
  • Frame is made of 11-gauge steel

What We Don't Like

  • Weight capacity is 400 lbs.
  • Footplate is 5" long

BUY: Titan Fitness Vertical Machine

Best Hack Squat Leg Press Machine - Force USA Leg Press Hack Combo

Force USA Leg Press Hack Squat Combo


  • Machine type: 45-degree Leg Press/Hack Squat combo
  • Weight capacity: 1,000 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 94" L, 66" W, 60" H
  • Footprint: 43 sq. ft.


If you can't do squats, then using a hack squat and leg press combination offers you different ways to train the quadriceps. This machine offers both of those exercises as well as forward thrusts and calf raises. Plus, converting the machine from one exercise to another takes only a few seconds, so you can focus on the next set.

This machine comes with five different starting heights, five safety stopper positions, and even band pegs for extra non-weight resistance. We like that it’s versatile and stays in place thanks to the dual floor support beams. Keep in mind that it does have a bigger footprint than other machines so if you’re limited on space, this machine probably isn’t the best option for you.

What We Like

  • Machine supports both weights and resistance bands
  • Commercial-grade upholstery will last for many workouts
  • Different starting and stopping positions are suitable for partial reps
  • Footplate for the leg press is 22" long and 26" wide
  • Four storage sleeves for Olympic plates

What We Don't Like

  • Band pegs don't have collars or a bigger end to keep the bands in place
  • Back pad for the leg press is narrow

BUY: Force USA Leg Press Hack Combo

Best Budget Leg Press Machine - GMWD Leg Press

GMWD Leg Press


  • Machine type: 45-degree leg press/hack squat combo
  • Weight capacity: 875 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 79" L, 32" W, 60" H
  • Footprint: 17.5 sq. ft.


Beginners and fitness-minded people with limited space and a limited budget will be pleased with the GMWD leg press because it's actually two machines in one—it can also be used as a hack squat machine. Aside from the different benefits that come with both exercises, the extra variety can help make workouts more engaging, which is helpful when you’re feeling bored and need some extra motivation.

The machine is made of 14-gauge steel and is made at a traditional 45-degree angle. There are two safety catches so those of different heights can both use it safely. The plates are loaded under the sled plate so you can move around the machine without bumping the weights or sleeves if space is limited. We also like that it holds almost 900 pounds, and weighs 325 pounds itself.

What We Like

  • Footprint is smaller than most leg press machines
  • Switching the machine from a leg press to a hack squat is simple
  • Backpad for the hack squat can also be used for the leg press seat
  • Backrest is 14" wide and 29" tall

What We Don't Like

  • Foot plate for the leg press is small
  • Those shorter than 5'7" may not fit comfortably
  • Machine does not come assembled

BUY: GMWD Leg Press

Best Compact Leg Press Machine - Body Solid Compact Leg Press

Body Solid Compact Leg Press


  • Machine type: 45-degree seated leg press
  • Weight capacity: 1,000 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 67.5" L, 47" W, 46.5" H
  • Footprint: 22 sq. ft.


The phrase "big things come in small packages" applies to the Body Solid Compact Leg Press machine. If you’re limited on space, this is a great option. It can be adjusted to fit your height and it is built for heavy work thanks to the 1,000-pound capacity.

We do want to mention, though, that this one works more like a hack squat because the user is seated at the top of the machine instead of the bottom. Plus, this option can also serve as a calf-raise machine.

What We Like

  • Backpad can be adjusted
  • Carriage slides on chrome guide rods with sealed bearings
  • Can train with one or both legs at the same time

What We Don't Like

  • No extra storage arms
  • Machine can only be used one way

BUY: Body Solid Leg Press

Best Commercial Leg Press Machine - GFS Leg Press Hack Combo

GFS Leg Press


  • Machine type: 45-degree leg press/hack squat combo
  • Weight capacity: 1,000 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 83" L, 34" W, 56" H
  • Footprint: 19.5 sq. ft.


The GFS Leg Press Hack Squat Combo provides the commercial gym feel within the walls of the home gym. The 11 gauge steel frame is going to hold up through the toughest workouts, and the padding on the seats will be comfortable enough to last through those high rep sets. This machine is easy to use for beginners and durable for advanced trainees.

This machine comes with a lifetime warranty, includes diamond-plated footplates to ensure that your feet won't slip, and the guide rods provide a smooth motion throughout the entire range of motion.

What We Like

  • Padding for the seat and shoulder pads of the hack squat are 4" thick
  • Safety stopper can be activated by simply pulling a pin
  • Comes with an adjustable safety catch on the machine

What We Don't Like

  • No storage arms for extra plates
  • Footplate is 16.5" long and 20.5" wide

BUY: GFS Leg Press Hack Combo

Best Horizontal Leg Press Machine - Body Solid Leg Press

Body Solid Leg Press


  • Machine type: Horizontal leg press machine
  • Weight capacity: 310 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 75" L, 32" W, 72" H
  • Footprint: 16.6 sq. ft.


A horizontal leg press machine is great for focusing more on the quads because you're pushing straight ahead instead of at an angle, which activates the hamstrings to a greater degree. We like the Body Solid horizontal leg press machine because it also comes with a weight stack. So you don't have to worry about adding and storing weight plates.

The footplate is diamond-plated and fixed while the backpad of the seat is how you adjust the length. And the footplate still moves back and forth thanks to the cable system that is included.

What We Like

  • Machine takes up less space than most horizontal leg press machines
  • Can concentrate on single-leg exercises as well as dual-leg 
  • Slight angle at the bottom of the footplate for heel stretching

What We Don't Like

  • Weight stack goes up to 310 lbs.
  • Individual plates are numbered instead of by listed by weight

BUY: Body Solid Leg Press

Best High-End Leg Press Machine - Powertec Leg Press



  • Machine type: 45-degree leg press machine
  • Weight capacity: 1,000 lbs.
  • Dimensions: 79" L, 36.6" W, 54" H
  • Footprint: 20 sq. ft.


For those looking to seriously upgrade their home gym setup, we recommend the Powertec Leg Press machine. There are weight holders both above and below the sled, which maximizes its ability to hold a lot of plates. Plus, its 1,000-pound capacity means you can go as heavy as you want.

The dual-angled footplate offers unique angles to train the quadriceps, hamstrings, and even the calves. The handles on the sides are easy to operate, and there are five hooks on each side for different starting points. And regardless of your fitness level, this leg press is sure to last for a long time to come.

What We Like

  • There is a handle on top of the footplate to assist the user to stand up
  • Backpad can be adjusted just by pulling on the pin
  • Starting weight for the sled is 60 lbs.

What We Don't Like

  • Maximum recommended user height is 6'3"
  • Assembly is required when it arrives


Benefits of Using a Leg Press Machine

The leg press machine offers trainees a safe way to target the lower body. The sled is on a track so you don't have to control the balance of the machine. This allows you to focus more on contracting the muscles. You can also train each leg individually as well as both at once. The leg press is traditionally considered a machine for the quadriceps, but you can also adjust your foot position to train the hamstrings or the calves.

How to Use a Leg Press Machine

Make sure you're secure in the seat and your feet are firmly on the footplate. Press against the footplate to take the sled off of the safety arms, and disengage the safety arms. Slowly lower the sled as far as you safely can, pause briefly, and press the sled back up with the strength in your legs. Don't lock the knees out. Repeat the same motion for the desired number of reps before re-engaging the safety arms to secure the sled.

Leg Press Alternatives

Until you get a leg press machine, there are other options you can work with. Effective leg exercises that can be performed with minimal equipment include dumbbell squats, squat jumps, goblet squats, lunges, and jump squats. If you have access to a squat rack and a barbell, you can do traditional barbell squats, front squats, and pause squats.

What to Know Before Buying a Leg Press Machine


Probably one of the most important considerations when choosing the best leg press machine is space—you should already have a good idea of how much space you have available before browsing. Consider moving around the machine as well as the space you need while using it.


The type of resistance you want to use matters too. If you have standard weight plates, then a leg press with Olympic weight holders won't serve you well. If you need to make the most out of a small room, then a machine that can double as a hack squat would be a big help. If you want to add resistance bands to the machine, then make sure there are band pegs on the bottom of the machine.

Personal Needs

Do you want to train super-heavy? Are you a taller user? The best leg press machine for you is one that can accommodate your training and support your goals.

Types of Leg Press Machines

There are several versions of the leg press. The standard version is the 45 degree machine with the sled high and the seat on the floor. Some machines have a slightly different angle, and there are even vertical leg press machines, which target the glutes and hamstrings more than the quads. Some machines have the ability to convert into a hack squat, which is a different movement that works the legs in a different way. Last but not least, there is the horizontal leg press that’s found in most commercial health clubs. These machines traditionally have weight stacks instead of weight holders for plates like most versions.

FAQs About Leg Press Machines

Is the leg press as good as squatting?

The squat is a very effective exercise for building full body strength and developing your legs. The leg press is a great alternative to isolate the lower body without having to engage the core or upper body. The leg press is also beneficial for higher rep training. If possible, do both and get the best of both worlds.

Can you get big legs with a leg press?

You can use the leg press to add size to your legs. You should focus more on the quadriceps if you want to make your legs grow, but you can also place your feet higher on the sled to target hamstrings. If your leg press machine can be converted into a hack squat, your chances of results are even better.

Is three sets of leg presses enough?

It can be, but don't feel like you have to restrict yourself to three. If you feel like you can do one or two more sets, feel free to do them. Five sets should be plenty for most.

Does leg press reduce belly fat?

A combination of a sound nutrition plan, weight training, and cardiovascular exercise is best for weight loss. You can't spot reduce belly fat, and the leg press machine focuses more on the lower body than the core.

How many times a week should you leg press?

If you're following a full-body program, you can use a leg press machine up to three times a week with limited sets for each session. If you're training with an individual split, then once or twice should be plenty.

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