Check out these 7 uncommon squat variations that you should be doing, but sadly are not.
Although many people skip leg day, most agree that squats are incredibly important, regardless of your goals.
Do you want to run faster? Squats can help. Lose weight? Squat consistently to see results. Improve your cardiovascular ability? Squats are among the best moves to do. Honestly, these are just some of the benefits of doing squats regularly:
- Strengthening leg muscles: Squats are particularly effective at strengthening the muscles in your legs, including your quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves.
- Building overall body strength: Squats also engage your core, back, and glutes, helping to build overall body strength.
- Improving flexibility: Squats can help to improve your flexibility by working through a full range of motion.
- Boosting metabolism: Squats are a high-intensity exercise that can help to boost your metabolism, which can aid in weight loss.
- Improving balance and coordination: Squats require balance and coordination, which can help to improve these skills over time.
- Enhancing athletic performance: Squats can improve your athletic performance by strengthening your lower body and improving your explosiveness.
Improving your lower body with squats can help you become a better athlete in other categories, improve your health and increase your longevity. It’s a win-win-win situation.
Clearly, you clicked here because you enjoy squats. Or better yet, you want to try something new when it comes to squatting. Fear not, let’s divulge ourselves into what you can be adding to your workout in terms of squats that you (probably) haven’t done yet.
Are you passed doing barbell squats, air squats, and lunges? Keep scrolling to see a whole new world of squats for you!
7 Uncommon Squat Variations You Are Not Doing
In this list of 7 uncommon squat variations, you will see different approaches on how to squat to give you a better workout.
If you hit a plateau, or simply want to add variety to your training sessions, this is what you’ve been looking for. Some of these variations are not aimed at beginners.
Let’s begin with one you most likely haven’t heard of before. The Kang squat utilises hip flexor movements, ankle mobility and flexibility to make it a well-rounded lower-body exercise.
The landmine squat is an anterior loaded squat where you will need one barbell fixed on the floor on one end to be able to perform it. We have extensively talked about the landmine squat, how to progress and muscles worked here.
If you are familiar with CrossFit, you probably have seen this exercise before. If not, you probably haven’t. This is one of those movements not recommended for beginners.
If you want a little bit of lateral movement, the curtsy squat can be your cup of tea. It targets your quads, hamstrings, glutes and calves not only vertically, but with some horizontal resistance.
One and One-Half Squat
The one and a one-half squat is simply a squat done twice without going all the way up after the first one. This will fire up your quads in no time.
ATG Split Squat
This might look like a very demanding exercise, but it will improve your strength while working on your ankle mobility and reinforcing your knee.
Pause Jump Squat
Another exercise in which you do normal squats, but vary slightly to increase the resistance on your quads. Simply take a second longer at the bottom part of the squat before jumping up again.
Bring Sally Up Squat Challenge
To finish it off, not exactly an uncommon squat variation, but rather a little bit of a fitness challenge. Click on the video and bring Sally up using your quads!
The frequency with which you should do squats depends on your fitness goals, your current level of fitness, and your overall exercise routine.
For most people, it is generally recommended to do squats 2-3 times per week, with at least one day of rest in between each session. This allows your muscles to recover and rebuild after each workout.
If you are new to squats or strength training, it is important to start slowly and gradually increase the intensity and frequency of your workouts over time. It is also important to use proper form and technique to avoid injury.
If your goal is to build strength or improve your athletic performance, you may want to do squats more frequently, up to 4-5 times per week, but it is important to listen to your body and avoid overtraining.
Overall, the frequency of your squat workouts should be based on your individual needs and goals, and you should always consult with a fitness professional if you have any questions or concerns about your exercise routine.
The muscles squats traditionally work are:
- Quadriceps: The quadriceps are the muscles at the front of your thighs, and they are the primary muscles used during squats.
- Hamstrings: The hamstrings are the muscles at the back of your thighs, and they work as stabilizers during squats.
- Glutes: The glutes are the muscles in your buttocks, and they are heavily involved in the movement of the squat.
- Calves: The calves are the muscles in the lower part of your legs, and they work to help you stabilize during the squat.
- Core: The core muscles, including the abdominals and lower back muscles, work to stabilize your body during the squat.
In addition to these primary muscles, squats also work a number of other muscles throughout your body, including your back, shoulders, and arms, as they help to support and stabilize the weight during the exercise.
Overall, squats are an excellent compound exercise that work multiple muscle groups throughout your body, making them an efficient and effective way to improve strength and fitness.