Most strength training programs, functional fitness classes, bootcamp sessions and HIIT workouts contain, somewhere, at some point, the squat. Strong legs are vital to our balance, stability, effective movement, athleticism and longevity. And the squat is vital to building both strong legs and a strong constitution.
Unfortunately, sitting in chairs for many hours each day ruins our bodies, including our squat.
So how can we do our part to reclaim our squat, reduce our risk for injury, and gain strength? For one, don't sit in the chair so much. Set a timer. After 45 minutes in a chair, get up and walk around or stand at your desk for 15 minutes.
After that, try these 3 tips:
1. Mobilize your ankles.
We often talk about hinging from the knee and hip in the squat. This is why the squat is supremely effective at building strength, it is a "multi-joint" movement. However, we often miss the third joint in the movement, our ankles.
Good ankle mobility creates movement patterns that put less stress on the knee, allows for better torso control and can alleviate stress on the lower back. That's why olympic lifting shoes have raised heels.
So what constitutes "good" ankle mobility? Take this quick test to see how you rank.
Then work some aspects of the info in the video below into the warmup or cool down of your training program to increase your ankle mobility.
2. Utilize RPR "Wake Up" Drills.
Reflexive Performance Reset (RPR) is about shifting your body away from harmful compensation patterns we build up over time through injury, overuse, underuse, inefficient use, stress, etc.
"Using the RPR® wake up drills™, you can shift your own body out of these patterns and reduce pain, increase flexibility and help your body become more resilient to injury.
The wake up drills™ use special reflex points that reset your body out of these harmful compensation patterns. What makes RPR® so unique is that you don't need a PhD in anatomy to use them. Athletes do the wake up drills™ themselves and take control of their own health and performance."
So how can you put this powerful tool seamlessly into your warmup? Take an online clinic here.
3. Prioritize box squats.
The strongest men and women in the world box squat regularly. Doing the box squat correctly can build strength, maintain health and add a whole new dynamic to your squat game.
Here's how to do them properly and see some healthy strength (and booty) gains in your training program:
For more help with your training program, visit our Coaching Programs here.