How to do a correct squat?

  1. Argh, different people have been telling me a variety of different ways and I'm feeling a little confused.

    How do you do a squat the right way?


    :shrugs:
     
  2. What? Like, a plie or a squat with weights?
     
  3. try and sit back almost like you're sitting into a chair. Do not let your knees go over your toes, they should stay behind the toes when bent.
    That's the part that makes a correct squat hard for me, it's easier for me when I can watch my side profile in a mirror while doing them. Lunges are easier for me:biggrin:
     
  4. Like swanky mama of three said. Plus, you can also kinda squeeze your tush when you come back up to standing position. That helps to firm those muscles.
     
  5. You have an imaginary line from your shoulders down to your hips, you should push off from your heels, straight back head looking forward or very slightly up at a fixed spot, and straight up from heels, to hips to shoulders in one motion. You want to go down slightly past parallel, meaning your knees bent a bit past parallel. I should be one smooth motion, if you cannot do this use less weight. I was taught to squat by a strength coach for the USOC. If you are using a bar on your back you do not want the bar on your neck or right below your neck, there is a natural groove a bit lower, it will feel akward for a bit but it will help you keep your form. A lot of ppl make the mistake of holding the bar right at or below the neck which is incorrect.
     
  6. Like Swanky said. Very important bit about the knee not overlapping your toe.
     

  7. Yes definitely squeeze your butt when coming up!!
     
  8. Thanks everyone!

    One more question:

    How far do you lean forward or do you even do that at all? If I try to keep my knees from overlapping my toes, then I have to lean forward.
     
  9. you'll naturally have to lean over some so as not to tip over :p
    Try not to lean too much, if you lean to make it easier, you're defeating the purpose :biggrin:
     
  10. The knees over your toes thing is false. Some people have longer legs and the knees will have to come over their toes. I like to tell people to go with what feels right...cause you can tell. Squats are working your legs, not your back. If you feel your lower back muscles working, then you're leaning the weight too far forward...not good cause you will mess your back up by doing that. What you also want to do is keep the weight over your feet. You always want to keep your lower back curved in it's natural position and not hunched or bent at all. Shoulders back and head looking either forward or up. Legs about shoulder width apart (widening or narrowing your stance will work different muscles in the leg, but I'd go no wider than a couple of inches wider than your shoulders as you legs can buckle), toes pointing in line with the direction your knees will be bending, then go straight down all the way past your knees, but do not bounce. If you can't do this slowly and controlled, then you need to lower your weight. Now come straight back up and don't lean forward.

    With squats it's very important to have the correct form or you will hurt yourself badly.
     
  11. ^ Good advice. I know that when a** to grass (A2G) squats (or full squats) are involved, it is almost inevitable that knees are going to go over toes, or very close to it. Full squats will give you the best results for your behind and legs.

    If you have balance problems (like I do), you can stick a couple of 5-lb. plates under your heels as you work on balance and form while doing squats correctly. When I have the bar on my upper back I always feel as if I'm going to fall backward. Using the plates has helped with this.
     
  12. interesting. . . I have been trained by 5 different trainers over the last 3 years and they have all reminded me to watch my knees.
    I also tend to lean too far over, it's easier :biggrin:
     
  13. Just wanted to share a video of a woman doing full squats. Which really rocks :boxing: She has great legs. It can be done, but you have to start light and slowly work your way up to heavy weights (if desired). Form is very important to avoid injury.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMyYLWYxs7Q
     
  14. ^^ Okay, this may sound a little dumb but do you do a full squat the same way as in the above video even while holding dumbbells in each hand?
     
  15. I'm trying to envision how you would do it. You can hold the dumbbells at your sides and do the full squat, or hold them in front of you, close to your body (as if you were doing hammer curls). You can also hold a weight plate in front of your chest. I do full squats this way, using a 25 to 45-lb. plate, or using the olympic bar with light weight added, if any. Full squats are so challening, but one of the best exercises for your body.