Want to work your hamstrings but don't have a leg curl machine do it with?
That's where Monkey Feet (a unique new piece of hamstring training equipment) comes in.
Its primary purpose is to allow you to attach a dumbbell to your foot so that you can do leg curls with it. It's perfect for at-home training.
So the question is...does it work effectively to accomplish this?
What are "Monkey Feet?"
It's a small "boot" that clamps onto a dumbbell handle, allowing you to attach a dumbbell to the bottom of your foot.
When you have your foot in the boot, the claw locks down on the handle, allowing you to securely perform a variety of exercises with weight attached to your lower leg. This can be anything from leg curls to glute kickbacks and a whole lot more!
How Does the Monkey Feet boot Work?
Monkey Feet utilizes a very innovative design kind of like a clamshell. You open it up, set the claw on the handle, then close the boot. Put your foot in then use the ratchet strap to lock it down.
It's relatively simple once you get the hang of it, though it may take a bit of jiggering to get the strap into place if it rolls around to the back instead of it being on the front. That's very easy to remedy, though.
What Exercises Can You Do With Monkey Feet?
The first exercise you'll want to try out is the dumbbell leg curl.
You can also do this standing on a Step riser so that you can start from a dead hang.
For a more focused contraction, brace your knee against a solid bar.
You can also step over the bar and get more of a stretch on the hamstrings at the start, similar to a preacher curl for your hamstrings.
This is an excellent setup for performing glute kickbacks as well.
And leg extensions...
It's very effective for adding weight to chin-ups and pull-ups.
And for performing pistol squats, to add resistance to the front leg (which hits the hip flexors of that side very hard).
That's not all, though...there are a few more "exotic" uses I've come up with for Monkey Feet.
This is a simulataneous knee raise and kettlebell swing. It hits the core and posterior chain extremely hard!
You definitely want to be holding onto something solid for balance when you do this one.
You can also use the Monkey Feet to hold a very heavy dumbbell for single leg squats on a bench. This exercise really hammers the glutes hard. And as you can see, the Monkey Feet held onto a 125 lb dumbbell, no problem.
And finally, these are Hatfield lunges (using a safety squat bar, holding onto the rack) with a hamstring focus. As you come up, try and keep that back leg bent.
This gives you total lower body training, all in one movement.
Any Negatives to Monkey Feet?
There are a few things to note, but nothing that should stop you from getting this, if you're interested.
1. The leg curl exercise isn't like a leg curl machine with a cam. You get a lot of resistance at the top contracted position and hardly any for the first 1/3 to 1/2 of the movement. But since the best part of the leg curl is the peak contraction, this is not a real problem.
2. The ratchet strap does rotate around a bit as you're getting the boot part on. You may notice that you have to spin the strap around regularly as you're getting the boot on in order to connect it. That's easy to do, though it may be a bit frustrating at first, trying to figure out why the strap rolled behind the boot.
3. There is a little bit of instability in some of the exercises that you'll need to be aware of, because of how the clamping part works and because of the shape of dumbbells. Adjust your weight accordingly - and as you practice, you'll get better at performing the movements even with this instability.
Monkey Feet are very effective for securely attaching weight to your feet. They do come in single boots - not pairs, just so you know up front. The plural "feet" is a bit confusing in that respect.
Bottom line, though, they're a really good piece of at-home training equipment for allowing you to do a wide variety of exercises, especially leg curls.
If you don't have access to a leg curl machine for knee flexion training for the hamstrings, this is exactly what you need.
It's very well built. And even though it does have a few moving parts, it's easy to get up and running very quickly right out of the box.
Monkey Feet are very versatile and you'll definitely get your money's worth out of these!
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