Squats are one of those powerful exercise moves that are perfect for targeting multiple muscles at once. The basic squat is the foundation to a number of squat variations that you can do at all fitness levels. We love the basic squat because it is an extremely effective exercise for any of your at home workouts. It uses every muscle of your lower body and also requires you to engage your core which helps you with your balance.
The basic squat is one of those moves that can be done any where. If you are trying to lose leg fat or gain muscle adding squats to your fitness regimen can be beneficial. If using your body weight along doesn’t challenge you, you can add more weight by holding dumbbells, kettle bells, or even safely snuggling a small child in your arms like I do often.
It’s important that you follow the instructions below on how to a basic squat properly because doing them wrong can be detrimental to your knees. Having a full range of motion is key to doing a squat accurate. If you really want a toned butt and stronger legs, you need to make sure you are fully sitting in the imaginary chair as I’ve described in the video below.
The Breakdown of a Basic Squat:
- Start in a standing position with your feet hip-width apart and your toes pointed forward. Pull your shoulders down. Relax. Place your hands by your sides with your palms facing inward.
- As you are about to start, engage your abs (as if I were about to punch you in the stomach), keep your chest lifted and head up.
- During the downward phase, shift your butt back as if you are about to sit in a chair. Keep your knees behind your toes and your weight in your heels. You should be able to lift your toes without falling.
- Slowly Rise back up and repeat.
This works: Your butt (glutes), the back of your thigh (hamstrings), and the front of your thigh (quads).
Intensify it: If you are not new to exercise and need a bit of challenge, try adding weights to it or incorporating plyometics (jump squats) to the move.