Exercise of the Month: The Squat

There’s no two ways about it. If you want a great butt, squats are the only way to go! The staple of any workout routine, the squat is an exercise I love. The squat is a full compound exercise that works primarily the muscles of the glutes, thighs, hips and core (especially lower back). It also burns more calories than just about any other single movement making it a great way of toning and burning fat.
What is great about squating is that it is a fundamental human movement that we have been doing since caveman days and it can be performed without any equipment. It builds strength, power and mobility.

One of the long held concerns about squats is that they can damage your knees. However, the reality is that if performed correctly they actually improve knee strength and mobility. You need to warm up first and then stand with feet shoulder width apart with knees centred over your feet.  As you slowly bend your knees, hips and ankles you push your bum backwards, lowering until you reach 90 degrees.

The hardest part of the exercise for newbies is keeping your bottom back. I always try to imagine that I am trying to sit on a chair that is a few feet behind me. This requires allowing your weight to centre on your heels and you to push your bottom back. By doing the exercise in this way, your knees will never extend further forward than the tip of your toes. When you perform it right, you’ll feel it!


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