Squats are such a great exercise for keeping people good overall in shape. Squats are a compound lift that not only work parts of your legs, but can be considered a whole body exercise, as a number of secondary muscles are also engaged through the movement.
Squats should be a part of any training that you are doing (pending on healthy joints and no pre-existing injuries). Whether you are trying to get "bulk up" or "tone up", squats should be a part of your lifting routine. The problem is that your results may vary depending on the technique that you use when squatting. You can also risk injury if you are not performing this complex lift properly.
These are some of the best ways to boost your squats so that you can get the most out of your workout and avoid injury.
1. The Warm-Up
One of the most forgotten and overlooked aspects of working out is the warm-up. People think that this is not a necessary step but it is actually quite crucial to boosting your squat strength. Warming up will activate the central nervous system to prepare your body for your workout. This can also reduce your risk for injury. A good warm-up should incorporate a great deal of light movements and be dynamic so you can loosen the synovial fluid in your joints.
2. Knee Protection
Your knees are such an important part of squatting, which is exactly why you want to make sure that you have the best protection for your knees. The best protection for your knees is good form, but you can also wear a thick knee sleeve/wrap, which will offer the wearer compression, increase the retention of heat, and add stability for squatting. This protection can be used by people of all ages. For younger people, this can prevent injuries. For older people, it can also prevent injuries and provide support to any pre-existing injuries.
Left: Knee Wraps / Right: Knee Sleeves
Technique is extremely important when you are doing any type of exercise; especially a complex lift such as squats. Squats require a specific type of technique in order to be the most effective. There are different techniques that are going to work for everyone but it is important to know that there are specific things that are required across the board technique wise. For instance, the position of the knees are important. If your knees are not exactly in the right type of position, you are not going to have an effective squat.
4. A Strong Core
Believe it or not, your core strength is very important when it comes to your squat strength. A weak core means that you can easily lose form when squatting. Squatting requires you to have a strong core so that you can maintain your position for a longer time. A strong core will help to keep your spine neutral throughout the movement and prevent injury. At the same time, you should also know that a strong upper and lower back are essential to squat strength for a lot of the same reasons.
5. Mental Strength
At the end of the day, your body is really only as strong as your mentality. If you are not confident in your squat or lifting, you are not going to perform well. A weak mentality will set you up for failure and will hurt your confidence. You need to be confident in what you are about to do if you are going to boost your squat strength. If you find this is a problem, build up your confidence by continuing to perfect your form. Going for a new PR? A little bit of loud music and pre-workout may be just what you need to smash through your plateau.
By following along with these tips, continually working to perfect your form, and following a structured plan, you will surely increase your squat strength!
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