One of the most popular exercises that works your major muscle groups (quads, core, glutes, hamstrings) is the bodyweight squat. This is also the reason why it should be part of every workout routine (regardless of age, gender or fitness goals). However, you have to nail the basic bodyweight squat first before trying other variations. This is the baseline and how you execute it can determine your strengths and even weaknesses, and also identify other issues, imbalances, and deficiencies that you have.
If you haven’t mastered it yet then you’ve come to the right place. Here’s how to do it using your body weight:
1. Make sure that you stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart and that your toes are slightly turned outward.
2. Breathe in and stabilize yourself by tightening your core. Start by pushing your hips behind you before you gently bend your knees into a squat position. See to it that you don’t allow your knees to push too far forward.
3. Continue to go down until your thighs are parallel or almost parallel to the floor. Keep in mind that your feet should remain flat and your chest lifted all throughout.
4. Breathe out while straightening your legs and push yourself back up to stand, while paying attention to your hips and torso rising at the same time. Don’t forget to push back up from the heels of your feet. Also, always remember to start with a few reps first and increase the numbers once you are confident and comfortable that you can do more.
Once you master and get the hang of the basic bodyweight squat then you can try other bodyweight squat variations. There are a lot of variations that you can do without any equipment and each one will work your core and lower body in slightly different ways.
Bodyweight Squat benefits
Now that you know that proper way to do it, it’s time to talk about the benefits of this popular compound movement. Aside from working major muscle groups, here are some of its benefits that will make you want to nail the proper form as quickly as possible:
1. Improve mobility, flexibility and posture
Since you will be staying safely indoors until further notice, it’s highly beneficial to perform squats to avoid sore, stiff muscles and other mobility issues. You’re probably more sedentary than usual during this quarantine so regularly squatting will definitely help you to loosen up and improve your mobility, flexibility and posture.
2. Boost hormone production
Prolonged sitting, when stuck at home, won’t help boost your hormone production. If you want to increase the production of hormones that could help you build muscle and lose fat for that “toned” look then don’t hesitate to add body weight squats to your everyday fitness routine.
3. Improve blood flow and circulation
Daily squatting can help keep the blood pumping in your body and improve circulation. Having better circulation can help transport oxygen and other essential nutrients throughout your body better which is vital for good health.
There you have it. These are just some of the benefits of squatting that should give you more reasons not to neglect this functional exercise.
Stay safe and avoid prolonged sitting ftifam!