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Fitness |Health

By Laura

How to perfect the Squat

By Laura

The squat is an excellent compound movement (an exercise that uses two or more joints and so more than one muscle group) to include in your workout.

Summer is here and a lot of us have our ‘bikini body’ as a goal this month. The squat is an excellent compound movement (an exercise that uses two or more joints and so more than one muscle group) to include in your workout. It targets those key areas- glutes, hamstrings, and quads as well as your core. Squats can be done using just your bodyweight, then progressing to some additional weight (such as a medicine ball or kettlebell). If you are new to this exercise then this is the place for you to start. We are going to use a barbell to perform a back squat- this creates instability which makes your core work harder. Try this workout to increase muscle size (and therefore definition). Remember, always ask one of our friendly personal trainers for advice if you are unsure on any part of the workout.

Warm up and include stretches that target your hips, hamstrings, quads and glutes. Once you have set the squat rack up perform at least 2 warm up sets of 8 reps at a light weight.

Main workout:

With a weight that is challenging but not impossible, perform 8-12 reps for 4 sets. Rest for 2 minutes in between sets (if you want to challenge yourself here you can turn the workout into a ‘superset’ where instead of resting, you’ll perform 8-12 reps of a different exercise such as press ups).

*If you want to see progress in this area you will need to increase the weight you are lifting as your body gets used to the exercise. Speak to one of our personal trainers for tips on how to do this safely.

 

Squat technique tips:

Keep your shoulder blades as tight as possible to keep the bar in the correct position.

Have feet just slightly more than shoulder width apart.

Engage your core.

As you squat push your knees out as you move your hips backwards.

Squat to the depth that is comfortable to you.

As you push back up drive your heels into the floor and keep your chest up.

Happy squatting!