How to properly do squat is important to achieve positive results and to avoid injury. Any type of exercise must be done properly otherwise you will end up wasting your time and also risk injury. The squat exercise is very effective such that it can increase or induce the production of endogenous testosterone production. It also works on the entire lower muscle group of the body hence it is called a compound workout.
In as much as we may look at squat as a simple workout that does not require technical know-how, it could be dangerous when done wrongly especially with weight. By the way, squatting is one of the most effective exercises one can engage in.
Now, let’s look at the general, conventional proper way to do squat. We shall start by how to do proper bodyweight squat then move on to how to do a barbell squat properly because the two require different approach even though they are both squat exercises. But the bodyweight squat is the basic squat, once done correctly there is every tendency that your barbell and dumbbell squat would be done correctly too.
That being said let see a guide to how to do bodyweight squat properly.
Body Weight Squat
To do the bodyweight squat properly you have to start by standing upright with your feet at should width apart. You can now put your hands behind your head. At this point you are set to begin your squat but not without observing an aspect such as; should your feet be flat on the floor when you are going down and up?
You see some people tilt their knees forward instead of trying to go down with their hips and butt as if they trying to sit down. You don’t do that, you must make sure your body is upright in the course of squatting down and up without having your upper body moving back and forth, it has to be steady.
Go down as much as possible before reversing back up Moreover, you must use a proper squat feet angle to maintain the balance you need during squat movement.
• Do not use or rely solely on your toes when squatting down but make sure to balance your feet in the course of squatting to avoid tripping or injury.
It is also imperative to mention the need to use the proper footwear, because this also plays a vital role in your squat workout and even in every workout, except you are going to be doing it without any footwear.
• Do not let your knees be way past your toes while squatting down.
• Do not squat at a parallel level. As I mentioned earlier on, squat down as possible it will make your knees stronger except if you have an existing knee injury.
• Do not relax your shoulder and back while squatting as this could cause injury and make you lift a lesser weight. With proper tension in your shoulders and back your upper body will engage your core and there will be no issue of a loose body.
How to do Barbell Squat Properly
When you can apply all the basics mentioned above then you will only have to worry about little things when it comes to barbell squat. However, it is very important to know how to go about getting off a barbell from the rack because it is a step further type of squatting from the bodyweight squat workout you are about to do. It can be a lot more dangerous when done improperly.
I would suggest you start with an empty bar for a barbell squat if it is your first time to avoid accidents or injury. Practicing with an empty bar will help you to get used to the bar and subsequently with the barbells on. This will help you perfect the proper way to squat with a barbell
Your trunk position is what matters apart from your stance when about to use the barbell for squat. Your head must be strengthened up and chest out and shoulders squared and a slight arch below your lower back. Take note, you mustn’t bend over or look down when you are about to squat with a barbell on your shoulders/upper back, you must be tensed and focused for the task ahead.
To Barbell Squat without a Rack
To barbell squat without a rack, you have to take the position of feet shoulder-width apart and bend over to put your hands on the bar just about the position of shoulder-width too. You can go ahead to jerk the barbell to your chest level, then over your head, and finally, rest it on your upper back. And when you are done you have to lift the barbell over your head to your chest then lower it to the floor. This means you have to use a weight you know you can conveniently lift over your head to the chest and finally lower to the floor when you are done squatting.
If you must barbell squat without a rack, please use a weight you are comfortable with, or better still practice with an empty bar to make sure you have gotten the idea of how to lift the barbell properly.
To Barbell Squat using a Rack
To squat with the barbell using a rack is a lot safer than not using a rack. Aside from the safety aspect it also allows the person to squat with heavier weights knowing one can always bale it on any of the hook sets on the rack when experiencing difficulty. You may even set the pins of your power rack below the depth you are going just in case if you have to bale at that point.
If you feel that the barbell bar is slipping away from your back, you can use a towel to pad (which I think can also not be convenient) or use Manta-Ray as this will improve your workout.
Squatting is a very productive workout, more so with a barbell. It could be painful but remember, no pain no gain, and the most painful exercise is the most productive. I do hope that this article on how to properly do squat has benefited you immensely.