ALL ABOUT SQUAT: All The Answers Of Your Questions
What Is Squat? How to do Squat? What are squat variations? The Squat Exercise: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
What is a squat?
Squat is my favorite exercise of all! The good news is that it is a super simple movement that even babies can do. Did you ever observe a toddler picking up something from the floor? Those little humans squat like pros! They hip hinge naturally, keep their knees over their feet and their back is perfectly straight throughout the exercise. The fact that even babies, whose muscles and bones aren’t fully developed yet, can do squats is important because it shows that everybody can squat! You don’t have to be a gym rat to be able to do it, most people just need to be reminded of the correct technique because their sedentary lifestyle has made them forget.
How to do a proper squat?
Put your feet hip wide apart and press them firmly into the floor. Look straight and never down to your feet, do them in front of the mirror if you want to check your posture. Raise your arms straight in front of you, this will help you to hold the balance. Now inhale and bend your knees. Slowly lower your body while making sure that your spine is neutral, which means your back should be straight and your hips will move back. You are basically doing the same movement you do when you sit down on a chair. Make sure your knees are not carving inwards and not traveling over your toes while you lower your body. Once your thighs are parallel with the floor, push back through your heels and return into starting position while exhaling.
What are the benefits of squatting?
Your legs and butt get stronger which is great since you are better equipped for daily activities. Someone who knows about squatting will lift any heavy item from the floor differently from someone who doesn’t. How many times did it happen that someone had a serious back ache after moving to a new place for example. That is because that person has most probably been lifting boxes with an arched back, which means squatting with the wrong technique all day. Apart from saving you from pain and being able to do daily activities more easily, squatting will lead to muscle gain which will again shape your legs and buttocks nicely: your thighs will get firmer and toned while your butt will get lifted and rounder.
Squatting for beginners:
If you are new at squatting you should take it slow. Don’t start with one of those squat challenges that are all over social media - you won’t be able to walk and that is not how I want you to get started. Watch this video on my YouTube channel ‘Doğru Squat nasıl yapılır?’ to use a chair in order to get used to the movement and slowly build up the strength you need to do it with the proper technique.
How should women squat?
There is not really a difference between women and man at least technique wise: a proper squat is a proper squat and it is going to be the same for men, women and children. But that said, an adult fit man may want to add more weights than a teenager who is squatting. So after you learned the proper squat technique, you will most probably look for an extra challenge. In this case you can either add weights or make the squat more difficult by for example do it on a single leg or with a resistance band. Personally I love doing squats with a thick resistance band (the fabric ones are awesome) to make it more challenging.
How should men squat?
If you are a guy who wants to make squatting more challenging, you may use a Bulgarian bag on your back. I like them because the weight is distributed equally and it is easier to hold than dumbbells or a ball. If you don’t have such a bag, you can ask your child to hop on your back. My son weighs 35 kilos now and he loves to act as my weight bag. Kettle bells are easy to grip too - either hold one in each hand or a heavy one with both hands in between your legs.
How many squats a day?
Start with 10 and if that is too hard, do them with the help of a chair. Once you feel comfortable, you can add another 10 and work your way up to 60. I suggest you squat every other day to see the result. You can even do them while you brush your teeth or while ironing, no excuses if you want to get toned legs and a cute firm butt!
When will you get results from squatting?
If you squat for a month, you will definitely feel and see the difference, so just keep doing them every other day and if possible in variations. I have started squatting in my 20ies, now I am in my 40ies and I never got bored of them.
Which squat variations exist?
I am only listing the bodyweight ones that don’t use any equipment.
Lateral Squat Walk
Single Leg Squat
Sumo Squat (also called Plie Squat)
Split Squat (also called Lunge)
Squat Home Workout:
Here are three different programs that you may do at home without any equipment at all. Check out my Squat Challenge videos on YouTube, once you are more advanced.
1st program: Squat Walk for 20 steps, do 10 basic Squats, then do 20 Sumo Squats and finish off with 10 Jump Squats
2nd program: Start with 40 Squat Pulses, move to Prisoner Squats and do 10 of them, with to Single Leg Squats and repeat 20 every side, end your workout with a 30 seconds Wall Squat
3rd program: Warm up with the Lateral Squat Walk by doing 4 steps to the right and 4 to the left 5 times, then move to 10 close-stance Squats, add 10 Split Squats for each side and end the workout with 2x10 Curtsy Squats