Performed properly, squats are more than simple leg exercises—they are one of the best activities to learn to engage deep abdominal and back muscles for power and support of the rest of the body.
Thighs should be about parallel to the floor at the bottom of the squat; however, hip and ankle mobility may limit movement for some people. If you are not able to lower to parallel while maintaining proper posture, temporarily limit the range of motion while working on flexibility.
- Hold a dumbbell in a vertical position, close to the chest.
- With heels in contact with the ground, core engaged, bend the knees and sit the hips back.
- Shoulders should remain back, chest up, elbows inside the knees, and spine neutral (not rounded).
- As you descend, engage deep abdominals and low back muscles to support the spine.
- Lower until thighs are about parallel to the floor; then engage glutes and thighs to drive your weight through your heels and bring yourself back to standing.