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A Comprehensive Guide to Squat Exercises

March 23, 2024 3 min read

A Comprehensive Guide to Squat Exercises

Squats are one of the most important exercises you can do to help improve your overall fitness. Squats target multiple muscles simultaneously, and they can be done with or without weights depending on your fitness level. Squatting is an excellent way to strengthen your lower body and core, as well as build muscle and increase balance, agility, and flexibility. In this comprehensive guide to squat exercises, we’ll cover all the basics and provide some tips on how to properly perform them.

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Types of Squats

There are several different types of squats that you can do, all of which target different areas of your body. Here are some of the most common types of squats:

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  • Bodyweight Squats: This type of squat doesn’t require any equipment and is great for beginners who don’t have access to a gym or don’t feel comfortable using weights. To perform a bodyweight squat, stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and your hands at your sides. Lower your body until your thighs are parallel with the floor and then push back up through your heels to return to the starting position.
  • Goblet Squats: Goblet squats are a great way to add resistance to your squats. To do a goblet squat, hold a single weight in both hands close to your chest and squat down as low as you can go. Make sure to keep your back straight and chest up throughout the exercise. As you become more comfortable with the exercise, you can increase the weight.
  • Barbell Squats: Barbell squats are the most intense type of squat and should only be attempted by experienced lifters. To perform barbell squats, start by placing a barbell across your back and gripping it with both hands. Keeping your chest up, chest out, and back straight, lower yourself until your hips are parallel with your knees and then drive back up to the starting position.
  • Pistol Squats: Pistol squats are an advanced variation of the regular squat and require a lot of balance and strength. To do a pistol squat, stand with your feet together and raise one leg off the ground. From there, squat down as low as you can go, making sure to keep your chest up and your other leg straight. Then press back up to the starting position.

Benefits of Squats

Squats offer numerous benefits, including improved physical performance and increased strength. Here are just a few of the many benefits of incorporating squats into your workout routine:

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  • Improved Strength: Squats are an excellent way to build strength in your legs, glutes, and core. Regularly performing squats can help you become stronger and more powerful, which can then help you perform other exercises more effectively.
  • Increased Balance and Stability:Squats can also help improve your balance and stability, which can make everyday activities like walking or climbing stairs easier. Additionally, squats can help you build better posture, reducing the risk of injury.
  • Enhanced Mobility:Squats can help increase your range of motion, making it easier to perform activities that require a greater degree of flexibility. Additionally, squats can help prevent injury by improving joint health and flexibility.
  • Stronger Bones:Regularly performing squats can help strengthen your bones, which can reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis.

Tips for Performing Squats

Now that you know the basics of squats and their benefits, here are some tips to help you get the most out of your squats:

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  • Make sure you have proper form:Proper form is key when performing squats. Make sure that your back is straight, your chest is up, and your knees are tracking in line with your toes. It’s also important to keep your core engaged throughout the entire movement.
  • Go slow: Squats can be performed quickly, but it’s important to take your time and focus on the quality of your movements. Try taking a few seconds to lower into the squat and pause for a second at the bottom before pushing back up. This will help ensure that you’re using proper form and engaging the correct muscles.
  • Focus on your breathing: Proper breathing is essential when performing squats. Take a deep breath before you begin and exhale as you are pushing up. This will help you maintain focus and control throughout the movement.
  • Be mindful of your body: If you start to feel any pain or discomfort while performing squats, stop immediately and assess the situation. If the pain persists, seek medical advice from your doctor.

Squats are a great way to improve your overall fitness and strength. They can help you build muscle, increase balance and stability, and enhance mobility. Remember, proper form is key when performing squats, so be sure to take your time and focus on the quality of your movements. With practice and dedication, you will be able to master the art of squatting in no time!