Breaking down the best squat position, perfect weighted squats, and bodyweight squats to help increase performance and prevent risk.
Squatting is one of the most powerful strength exercises you can do. From the bodyweight squat to upper body benefits, a proper squat can give you more than legs. Over time, we’ve all gotten a little lazy on the squat department, with chairs and furniture taking precedence and thus reducing our natural squat strength. So, returning to a squat rack or squatting for the first time will take a few considerations, let’s break them down.
Forming the squat
Firstly stand with your feet wider than your hips, but only by a bit. Make sure your toes are pointed slightly outward (5 – 20 degrees), and pick a spot on the wall to stare directly at. With your arms straight out in front of you, you should have all your weight on your feet. When you feel like you’re ready to bend at the knees, start doing so into a deep squatting position, making sure to stare directly ahead as you go down. As you reach your eccentric max, make sure to then push as hard as you can back up to the original position, moving in reverse to how you began.
The body weighted squat
Forget a barbell squat for a second, our natural squat ability with nothing but our body weight is great too. Make sure you stand shoulder-width apart, focus on your starting position, gently bend at the knee with your back straight, and proceed to squat correctly. A proper squat form might take a little bit of work, check it out here.
The barbell squat
Adding weight onto your squat load is a great way to build squat strength. It’ll also help to develop supporting muscles across the board, and of course, feel like you’re progressing too. Because squats are a compound movement, the more weight you apply, the more your extra muscles are gaining too. Be careful with the barbell, you may need to adjust positions, so be sure to feel if the barbell feels better against your chest or extended out straight forward in both hands (each of which target your muscles in a different way)
In conclusion, there’s so much more info out there regarding squats. From the goblet squat to the pistol squat, variations on timings and movements, and so on. In reality, there’s always the right way to perform a squat movement. From using only your body weight to deep squat, to getting used to lower body flexibility with weighted forms, getting used to the squat is getting used to moving in one of the most powerful ways humans can, and moving one step closer to this movement’s perfection is moving closer to a healthier lifestyle. Make sure to watch plenty of videos online for some great how-to tutorials with visual aids – it’s always good to see perfection, rather than hear about it.