Squats are a popular workout exercise. They demand a lot from our lower bodies and make us feel incredible once we've finished them! The following blog outlines five reasons you should be doing them regularly. Ready to learn what they are? Let's go!
Why you should squat more
Walk into any gym any time and you're bound to see someone doing squats.
But for newbies or those without the confidence, it's very difficult to walk up to the rack and start squatting with perfect form.
So whether this involves getting a personal trainer, or learning via how-to videos online, we're encouraging you via this blog to take the plunge and start squatting.
You can even try them at home first, perfect your form, then storm into the gym and show off your impeccable squatting form.
In the fitness world, the harder the exercise, generally the better it is for you. And those of you who squat regularly know how much squats take it out of you!
And for good reason ..
Reason 1: They're Great For Growing Your Quads
Most people opt for squats on leg day because they work the quads very well.
Firstly, let's take a closer look at our quads:
The quads get their name because there are four (hence the word "quad") muscles within them.
And doing squats will work all of these muscles except your rectus femoris.Three out of four is pretty good going!
So for a solid looking pair of quads, make sure squats are part of your leg workout routine.
Reason 2: You'll Be Able To Jump Higher
A very recent study found that in comparison to leg extensions, squats allowed the subjects to jump much higher.
This is because squats are working so much more of our lower bodies that our ability to produce force is therefore greater.
If you're playing sports like AFL or basketball that require jumping, make sure squats are finding a way into your gym routine!
Reason 3: They Might Help Prevent Injuries
No one likes time out of the gym. It can cause us to lose our confidence and wreak havoc on our mental health.
Many injuries occur due to imbalances and weaknesses, and squats bolster our knee and hip stability.
This can assist and prevent any issues arising here, with stability being one of the most critical.
Stabiliser and load transfer core muscles assist in understanding injury risk, assessing core muscle function, and developing injury preventionprograms. Let's go through them:
Stabiliser muscles during squats: Directly and indirectly (stabilisers) the squats work our:
gluteus Maximus (glutes)
m. gluteus medius (glutes)
vastus lateralis (thigh)
m. vastus medius (thigh)
m. vastus intermedius (thigh)
m. semitendinosus (thigh)
m. semimembranosus (thigh)
m. biceps femoris long head (hamstring)
m. soleus (calf)
m. gastrocnemius lateralis (calf)
m. gastrocnemius medialis (calf)
During squats, the hamstrings function mainly as stabilizers of the ankle, knee, and hip joints by working to control the descent movement of the squat, and by transferring energy among the muscles on the way up.
Also on the way up during a squat, our hip extensor forces produce the largest powers followed by the ankle plantar flexors (extension of the ankle) and then the knee extensors (quads and knees).
The hip and knee extensors also provide the initial bursts of power on the way up when we're squatting. The ankle extensors and a second burst from the hip extensors add power during the latter half of the ascent.
Load transfer core muscles during squats: your glutes, hip adductors, and rectus femoris. The first two muscles are worked well in squats, but the rectus femoris as we've learned is not.
So as you can see, we are working not only our quads and glutes well during squats but key stabiliser muscles and joints which might help prevent injury in daily life.
Balance and poor core stability are all measured by performance during squats when injury assessment takes place.
So, prevent some potential injuries by ensuring squats form part of your gym routine; it's that simple!
Reason 4: You'll Be Able To Run Faster
Given squats improve force and power output, they'll also increase your sprinting speed.
In this study, fourteen soccer players tested their vertical jumps and sprint times and then did full squats and weighted squat jumps.
And guess what happened?
Both squat variations resulted in faster sprint times!
Reason 5: You'll Feel Unstoppable
You can do leg extensions, leg presses, and any other leg training variation.
But nothing feels like a few sets of deep squats!
All the "help" from machines is taken out and your body is left to fight alone to push out every rep.
And there's a magic that comes from this that has to be experienced which does NOT come from any other leg exercise!
So there are five reasons to start squatting: you'll grow your legs well, you'll be able to jump higher, run faster, reduce your likelihood of injuries, and feel bulletproof. And what's not to like about that?
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