Boyer Coe’s Oldschool Leg Program

The following article was written by Boyer Coe’s friend Shelton Leger around 1970 – Mr. Berg

“Besides man’s brain, what else makes him so unique as compared to the animal kingdom? He walks proudly upright supported on two pillars of strength – his legs.

From man’s early beginning, he’s needed good strong legs in order to survive. His legs served as his only mode of transportation, enabled him to hunt down his food and run fast when something larger wanted to make a meal out of him. Just look back at all the paintings of early man, and you’ll notice well developed legs; without them early man wasn’t anything.

Well, times have changed. Modern Man’s life has become so easy he just doesn’t use his legs anymore. He’s allowed them to dwindle down to twig-like appendages, usually supporting a pot belly. A sad looking excuse for one of God’s creations.

This is where the dedicated athlete breaks away from the trend. As bodybuilders, we realize that in order to compete in the physique game, strong, completely developed legs are a must. Unfortunately, many of us don’t realize this soon enough. So many of us tend to overdevelop our upper bodies in comparison to our legs when weight training is first taken up. A mistake I have to admit to making when I first started training.

Once this is done, it requires double effort to equalize things. I actually never realized what proper leg work was until I began to train with Boyer Coe. being naturally big hearted and easy going is not one of the characteristics he carries over into his training. Boyer has no pity on anyone who trains with him; you either keep up or you don’t train with him. But the results are well worth all the effort and pain.

boyer coe leg workout
The legs of Boyer Coe truly look like pillars of power and have been a big factor in helping him win more Mr. Universe titles than anyone else. In the photo we see Boyer Illustrating the proper performance of the Dinky squats (without weight), then the front squat on a special machine in his gym, and then a squat on the same ‘Thrust’ machine. Photo courtesy of Boyer Coe

I will now get into the routine that Boyer and I followed prior to his Mr. World and Mr. Universe victories. Actually we incorporated two different routines and worked out Monday through Thursday, resting the other three days.

Therefore we worked legs on Tuesday and Thursday. On Tuesdays we did the following: Heavy leg presses super-setted with thigh extensions. We did all movements in a very slow, smooth style, never jerking. Especially, in the thigh extension we tried to hold each contraction a second or two at the top.

After super-setting these two movements out thighs were really burning. We kept the reps about 10 to 15 for each movement, 4 sets each.

Next we went to Sissy Squat supersetted with Leg Curls. Boyer really gets into those Sissy Squats. It took me forever to learn the correct form in doing this movement.

If done properly you need little or no weight. Boyer has gotten so proficient at this movement he can actually touch the back of his head to the floor, giving the thighs an extreme stretch. As mentioned, this was done along with leg curls. Without a doubt, this is Boyer’s favorite leg exercise. If given the time he would do this movement all day – He’s crazy about it.

This again was done 10 to 15 reps for four sets, along with the Sissy Squats. Our Thursday routine consisted of the following: Back Squats on the thrust machine super-setted with Front Squats on the thrust machine.

We did these very strict and probably they were the hardest of all the leg exercises. We did these on a special machine built by Bob Clark and it is the best leg machine we have found for overall leg development. Every gym should have one. Again, this was done 10 reps each for 4 sets.

Next we super-setted Leg Presses (Bob Clark machine) with Boyer’s old favorite, Leg Curls. We could not handle much weight on the leg presses because of the two movements previously done, but the pain was sheer agony. We did these non-lock style and kept this up for 15 burning reps and then on to the leg curls.

We finished off each leg workout with one set of full squats for 20 reps with as much weight as we could handle, just to put the icing on the cake.

After this routine, I was always dying of thirst and wanted to make a mad dash for the drinking fountain.

However, I usually had to be content with sitting on the floor for a few minutes until I could get up sufficient strength to walk over to the water fountain under my own power.

I think that you will find this routine not only interesting to do but very result producing. It has worked well for us and we continue to use it.”

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