Believe it or not, performing a squat is not as straightforward as it seems. Many people fall victim to some common squat mistakes. The last thing I want is to have all of your hard work be for nothing, so I’m going to tell you how to do the perfect squat and how many squats you should be doing a day.
What’s the Proper Squatting Position?
Ensure your feet are about shoulder-width apart and point them slightly outwards. If this positioning feels uncomfortable, you can keep your feet pointed parallel too.
Next, bend your knees and push your butt down like you are going to sit in a chair.
Ground your heels into the floor. Imagine your heels are glued to the floor.
Keep your chest up and shoulders back.
Keep your arms either interlocked by your chest (see picture below) or you can put your arms straight out in front of you.
As you are squatting down, make sure your knees go outwards rather than inwards. Your knees should never go further out than your feet.
How Deep Should I Squat?
In order to feel the burn, try and squat down as low as you can. You want your thighbone to be parallel to the floor or your knees to be at a 90-degree angle (unless you have knee problems).
How Do I Get the Benefits of Squats?
1. Squeeze Your Glutes
After you have pushed your butt as low as you can, you want to squeeze your glutes on the way up. Now, I know you must hear this phrase a lot in the fitness community, but what does it actually mean? Certified personal trainer Timothy Lyman describes it as “‘squeezing’ or ‘clenching’ your butt cheeks together, without allowing your hips to move forward.” You can also think of it as a mini-pelvic thrust (without swinging your hips forward) as you are coming up. If you don’t squeeze your glutes, your butt muscles aren’t activated and so the exercise is basically pointless!
2. Don’t Rush
The phrase the faster, the better certainly doesn’t apply when it comes to squats. In fact, squats should be done slowly so that the muscles will have time under tension. Going slow really challenges and isolates your muscles so that your squats are effective.
How Many Squats Should I Do Everyday?
How many squats you should do every day depends on a variety of factors — age, weight, height, etc. But, in general, you should do as many as you feel comfortable doing. PlayFitt recommends doing about 20–30 every day. You can do this in one set if it feels right, or you can break it up into smaller sets (3 sets of 10 squats).
Let’s Sum Up:
Feet shoulder-width apart, push your butt down as if sitting in a chair while keeping your chest and shoulders pushed back
Go DEEP by squatting until your knees are at a 90-degree angle
Squeeze your glutes and don’t go too fast
There’s no magic number of squats you should do a day, do what feels right for YOU!
Ok champ, you’re ready to get out there and work those glutes!
Want an app that can track and count your squat reps for you? Check out PlayFitt, the movement app that can track your squats, pushups, stairs, steps, and more! Who knew living a healthier life and building sustainable habits could be so fun?