”I Can’t Squat”
There’re more to a squat than the generic squat you see most of the fitness industry using. Squatting is a great exercise to build muscle in the quadriceps, adductors, glutes, abdominals and back muscles (spinal erectors, in particular). However, squatting requires good form and a fair amount of flexibility so to build these muscles effectively, make sure you’re practising good form and flexibility… Start off with body weight squats, learning the correct movement and feeling for the control. Warm up thoroughly before squatting, incorporating some bodyweight exercises to increase your heart rate and fire up your leg muscles. Make sure you stretch after, it is important to try and recover well from all exercise, focusing on the areas of the body you have majorly worked. Lastly, be sure you are aware of the teaching points, or that you have someone around who can help you with the teaching points (that’s where we come in, if you’re looking for a personal trainer, you know where to find us…)
So, for those of you that state you don’t squat because you can’t squat, take a look at the list below:
Single Leg Squat
Bulgarian Split Squat
Lateral Walking Squats
These are all forms of squats that are either a regression or progression of a squat (there’s plenty more too) so have a little research into these variations of squats and try and integrate them into your routine. You could start off with no weight, with just going down to a 45° angle, only doing 3 reps at a time, watching yourself in the mirror when doing the squat or gaining a kinaesthetic understanding of what a good squat feels like. It’s a process, take your time with it but make sure you do it properly!
Our top tip for you – stay away from the Smith Machine. These machines are locked into place and allow you to disengage the muscles being worked as the machine has the ability to control the movement. If you squat on a Rack Machine, or freely, you require balance and control in the movement, meaning smaller muscles are fired up and engaged, benefiting you more.