Legs hip-width apart, glutes back, and bend at the knees – strength training fans love squats. It’s no wonder squats are super effective for your lower body. This exercise requires strength from the glutes and thighs. Therefore, the bodyweight exercise trains various muscles, including the front and rear thighs, buttocks, calves, and even the back and stomach. Another plus point: the intensity of squats can be wonderfully increased, so you can use additional weights like a barbell or increase speed by incorporating jumping jacks.
Even if the squat sounds easy enough, beginners in particular can make one mistake or another when performing it at first. Therefore, beginners should pay attention to the following tips:
Squats for beginners: 5 tips
1. Po back
One of the most common mistakes beginners tend to make early on is this: Instead of pushing their butt back nicely, many people lower their glutes toward the ground and squat down. When you squat, you should feel like you’re sitting on the edge of a chair with your butt. To do this, first bring your butt back and then lower yourself down.
2. Don’t let your knees fall inward
Another important tip to keep in mind as a beginner is the position of your knees. If your knees fall inward, you will be subject to more stress. In the long run, this can lead to pain and increase the risk of injury, especially if you also train with weights. Therefore, perform your squats in front of a mirror or use a light elastic band, which you place at the level of your thighs. By working against the pressure, you automatically push your knees out.
3. Keep your back straight
The squat is quite exhausting and requires a lot of body tension, especially in the back. Beginners may have trouble keeping the tension on their backs, especially at first. As a result, instead of keeping your back straight, you arch it slightly. Tip: hold your stomach and imagine that you are making a wooden cross; this will keep your back nice and straight. It can also help to squat in front of a mirror.
4. Heels stay on the ground
What many underestimate when it comes to squats is proper foot position. To squat properly, you need a stable base, so make sure your toes are pointing out and your heels are firmly planted on the ground. If you lift your heels while squatting, you not only lose stability, but you also put a lot of pressure on your knees.
5. Deep squat
To get the most out of squatting and use your thigh muscles effectively, you need to squat as deeply as possible. Ideally, you should drop your hips below your knees to use the full range of motion of the exercise.
On the video: squats – the correct execution