Learning how to do a squat is key for smart home workouts.
Once you know how to do the perfect squat, it’s one of the best workouts available for staying active and healthy.
Fear not, squats are simpler than they seem!
In this squat guide you’ll learn how to do a proper squat, squat types and the benefits of squats, so you can add them to your fitness routine.
But before we get to that, let’s cover the squat basics.
What are squats?
Squats help engage the largest set of muscles in your body: your quads, glutes, and hamstrings. This exercise's primary function is to strengthen your lower body. It also helps to engage your core and is a great exercise to strengthen your joints. Not to mention squats help prevent common injuries, such as knee or ankle sprains.
How to do a squat in 5 easy steps:
1. Start with your feet shoulder width apart
Point your feet slightly outwards or keep them parallel if it’s more comfortable.
2. Push your heels into the floor
It’s important to place your weight on your heels. Imagine your heels are glued to the floor.
3. Keep your chest up and your core tight
Your chest should be forward, your shoulders back and your back neutral.
4. Push your hips back and bend your knees
Send your glutes down as if you were going to sit on a chair. Bend your knees to a 90-degree angle. Your knees should track over your big and second toe. Your shins should be perpendicular to the floor. Aim to get your thighs parallel to the floor.
5. Push back up to your starting position
Engage your glutes and push your heels actively into the floor to send your hips forward to come back up to your starting position.
Repeat the squat movement as many times as needed during your home workout.
How many squats should I do?
Do as many squats as you feel comfortable doing. How many squats you should do every day depends on a variety of factors like age, weight, height, etc.
20–30 every day is a good start. Do one set of 30 if it feels right or break it up into smaller sets (3 sets of 10 squats) if you need a break in between.
Keeping track of how many squats you do is essential for getting the most from your home workout.
Using a squat counter app is the best way to keep track of your progress, set goals for your daily fitness and make your workouts a habit.
Please consult a professional if you have any knee or lower back pain while performing squats.
Squat types: 5 basic variations
There’s tons of different squat variations to explore whether you're a beginner or once you've mastered the basic squat.
Here’s 4squat variations to explore in your workout routine.
1. Chair squats
Use a chair for guidance, squat down to the chair. Once your glutes touch the chair push back up to your starting position. This is a great way to help you gain more confidence in your squats and helps you feel where your body needs to be in space. This variation works as a warm up or even as a tactile guide to progress to a deeper squat!
2. Goblet squats
Add weights to your squats (dumbbells, kettlebells or watermelons) to boost the intensity of your workout. Ease your way into this variation and listen to your body.
3. Split squats
Take a large step forward to stagger your feet. Keep your back straight and squat until the calf of your back leg is parallel to the floor.
4. Plyometric squats
Stand with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart. After you squat down, use all of your strength to jump up. Upon landing enter back into the squat position.
Now that you know 4 simple variations of the basic squat, let’s talk about squat benefits and how they’ll improve your fitness and workout routine.
Benefits of squats
Squats are a popular exercise because of all the benefits they offer a trainee.
- No equipment is needed to perform a basic squat
- Can be done anywhere
- Strengthens both the lower and upper body
- Quick and easy exercise
- Boosts overall mood and productivity
- Improves athletic mobility and flexibility
There are many other benefits when it comes to adding squats into your workout routine. Squatting is one of the easiest ways to improve your quality of life.
Congrats! You're now a squat expert.
Now that you know how to do a squat, different squat variations and some of the benefits of squats, you’re ready to get moving.
So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to get squatting!