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Functional Exercises: The Squat

Squats are probably one of the most popular exercises performed. It’s probably for the reason I mentioned it in this post last month; people think squats make the booty. I mean, it helps. But squats target all the muscles in your legs, lower back, and core. Because they target the muscles in your legs and lower back, they strengthen your knees and decrease back pain. Makes dancing all night a bit easier on your knees the next day. Think twerking. If you’re not into dancing all night, squatting is also useful for helping you go from the sit-to-stand position or stand-to-sit position with ease on your knees. Squatting improves posture, running form, and speed.

There are different variations of the squat, but for now, I’ll focus on how to properly perform the traditional squat. Before you begin any exercise you always want to have a firm foundation. Always make sure your feet are lined up and even. The neutral position of the body is with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes at 12 o’clock, chest up, and shoulders back and down.

For squatting, turn your toes slightly outward. Plant your heels and sit back in an invisible chair or actual chair. Keep your thighs parallel to the floor and press through your heels to stand back up. When performing a squat remember to keep your feet flat, poke your but out, and sit into the movement more than squat into it.

Other variations of the squat include wall squats, split squats, frog squats, goblet squats, sumo squats, jump squats, back squats, front squats. Honestly, I can go on and on listing every squat there is but there are way too many.

Start out with the traditional squat and perfect this one first before progressing to the other variations.

So, it's a slight flex for me to have Costa Rica in the background of my videos above. I couldn't resist. It was beautiful waking up to the sounds of monkeys playing in trees, tropical birds conversing, and roosters crowing.

Check out more pics below!


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