Do you even Squat?
Do you know one of the most asked questions I still often get is how do you Squat? The answer is most often a simple one, however it can start to get quite technical for individuals whom aren't able to squat successfully yet.
You see, there are numerous variations of the Squat including the Back Squat, Front Squat, Hack Squat, Sissie Squat etc. All target differing areas of the Quads, Hamstrings, Glutes and Calves. However the Core is more than often used throughout each exercise.
For the purposes of keeping this post to the point, we will look at the Barbell (Back) Squat setup. Here's an easy breakdown on How to Squat in 7 simple steps:
1. Get ready to stand directly under the bar. You have the option of a High bar or Low bar. A High bar placement rests the bar on the base of your neck. A Low bar placement rests the bar on the base on the Lower trapezious & Rear shoulders (Delts). Both have it's benefits in the sport of Bodybuilding and Powerlifting. When ready stand directly under the bar.
2. Grip the bar as tight as possible and Clasp Shoulder blades together. This will help tighten the core and strengthen your technique. You also have the option of using a Shoulder or Hip width grip.
3. Unrack the bar and step back about 2-3 steps. Keep steps minimal to save Energy.
4. Engage Hips by unlocking them and sit slightly back. Keep Chest out looking straight ahead.
5. Inhale and get ready to Squat. This next step will depend entirely on Hip Flexors, Knees and Foot position. A Squat should resemble a downward seated movement where the Hips engage first followed by Flexion of the knees.
6. Squat down to parallel where the Hamstrings are parallel with the floor. Keep Back and Chins straight and in line with each other.
7. At the base of the movement Squat back up whilst exhaling. Rack the bar when ready. Congratulations! This completes the Squat movement.
Common Errors and Misconceptions
Try to be aware as there are incorrect ways to Squat which can leave you more prone to accidents and injury. Some incorrect cues to look out for include:
Rounding of the back
Looking straight down
Incorrect breathing technique
Chest & shoulder rounding or collapse
Knees over toes (Long Femurs exempt)
Locking of the Hips
Angle Imbalance of Back and Chin bone (Short Upper Torso exempt)
Note: Remember to always ensure correct form is utilized for every repetition!
Join us next time as we breakdown How to Deadlift!