In one of our earlier articles, we made absolutely clear the importance of leg workout. In order to achieve some serious results and to boost your overall fitness, squatting exercises are a must. By creating an anabolic environment in your body, leg exercises help build your upper body as well. Squatting is thus called as the king of all exercises. But to all these benefits, there’s a negative side as well – the risk of injuries. Squats, being a complex exercise, involves a lot of room for error. If not done properly, squats can give you a serious, bad ass lower back and spine problem. Plus, the common squat mistakes also devoid you from getting the maximum gains from this killer exercise.
Top 5 squat mistakes people make:
Cheating: Not going low enough
Most of the guys don’t even reach the parallel position. This habit of yours reduces your chances to gain more strength and size in legs because it limits the range of motion. In addition, it will hurt your knees as the force of the barbell won’t shift onto your hips until and unless you touch parallel. A research in Denmark has found out that deep squats increase quad size and strength more than partial squat. So make sure you go low enough and don’t cheat.
Bringing your knees in
If you’re looking to stress your knees and damage your ligaments, then you are most welcome to collapse your knees inward as you squat. Make sure that you avoid this at all costs. The correct movement for your knees is as shown in the picture – your knees should be in same direction as your toes. Usually, people new to squatting are unable to hold their knees together. A solution to this problem is that you can place a mini band around your knees in order to force your legs to fight against the resistance. It also helps to activate the right muscle to keep your knees in proper form.
Lifting your heels
Sometimes, people lift their heels while going down. This shifts the weight forward on your toes and increases the difficulty. In addition, it also puts stress on your knees. The correct way to do it is to drive the motion through your heels. There is quick fix to it, curl your toes upward to eliminate the chance of lifting heals – because you cannot lift both of them together. 😉
Rounding lower back below parallel
Maintaining controlled form is very crucial to save yourself from injury while doing squat. Generally, people round their lower back for comfort and that put dangerous stress on their lumbar spine. In gym language, it’s called “Butt-wink”. The reason being that when you descend towards parallel, your butt goes down and lower back rounds.
Using the smith machine
Always ignore Smith Machine while doing squats. It forces you for unnatural position. Smith Machine prevents you from getting full benefits of squat. One of the reasons for doing squat is to force yourself to stabilize the weight and this helps in building a strong mid section and eventually abs.