The squat is a dynamic strength training exercise that requires several muscles in your upper and lower body to work together simultaneously. Many of these muscles help power you through daily tasks such as walking, climbing stairs, bending, or carrying heavy loads. They also help you perform athletic-related activities.
Adding squats to your workouts can help boost your exercise performance, decrease your risk of injury, and keep you moving more easily throughout the day. But these are just a few of the benefits.
Keep reading to learn more about the rewards you can reap from doing squats and variations you can try for added benefits. But there are also side effects of squatting and we’re going to cover this in this article: “5 Reasons Why You Should Never Squat”.
Squats are one of the most popular and despised exercises. Squats are a compound exercise which utilizes multiple muscle groups and joints. While the benefits of squats are widely known, they aren’t for everyone.
People with back injuries should avoid squatting. Squats can put a lot of tension on your lower back and can lead to an injury if performed with an improper form. Squatting with back problems is asking for trouble.
No weightlifting belt or spotter can save your back from popping if you use an incorrect form or go too heavy on the squats with a back injury. Stretching and warming up your lower back before a leg workout is always a good idea whether you have a back problem or not.
For some people, squats can cause knee pain. If you feel an uncomfortable joint pain every time you squat, you should probably avoid the squat rack for the time being and consult a physician.
Joint pains can be fixed by using supplements. Supplements like glucosamine and chondroitin have been proven to bring relief from joint pains. There also have been cases where people have developed old man knees by squatting with improper form.
Unusual Physical Characteristics
Not all of us were born to squat. People with unusual physical characteristics like long legs or torso can face genuine problems while squatting. People with long legs, tight calves, or ankles might have relatively poor mobility and can find it hard to squat with proper form without recruiting secondary muscles like the lower back.
Alternatives Might Be Better
The ultimate goal of performing squats is to build stronger and more muscular legs. You don’t have to be fixated on squats if you can reach this goal through other exercises. Everyone’s body works a little differently and some exercises might target your quads better than old-school squats.
While the squats are complete leg builders, if you want to focus primarily on your quads exercises like extensions and lunges might target the muscles more effectively. You should focus on what works better than following the herd into the squat rack.
Machines Can Be More Efficient
Some people complain of never getting a pump while performing the barbell squats. Using machines can put constant tension on the muscles. Isolation exercises like the leg extensions and leg curls can help you get a muscle-ripping pump.
Squatting on the smith machine or performing hack squats can be a great alternative for people who find it hard to maintain a straight back on the barbell squats. Other barbell squat alternatives are dumbbell goblets and dumbbell sumo squats.
Squats can be overlooked but training legs can’t be. If any of the above-mentioned reasons ring true for you, work around these problems and try getting comfortable with squats. Working with a coach on your form can help fix your problems with the squats.
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