4 ways to improve your squats by TWC Ibiza personal trainer Katie Bolt
Are you struggling with your squats? No worries TWC Ibiza Personal Trainer Katie comes to the rescue. Let’s get your squats better.
Ok so time to get a tiny bit technical, the most common question I come across in sessions is how to improve my squat technique. Squats, when done correctly, can illicit amazing results, not just working your legs but hitting deep into your core and allowing greater range of movement around the hips.
However it is easy to become complacent once you have achieved correct form in a 90 degree body weight squat. Deep, unrestricted squats recruit more muscles allowing the holy grail of burning fat and building muscle.
Not just for a great butt, think the whole of the lower body, back and core. Practice makes perfect! I have come up with my top 4 exercises to improve squat form, and avoid injury while doing so.
1. Squatting can put pressure on the knees but, if done correctly can improve knee stability. Practice sitting on a chair, raise one leg and stand up keeping your hands in front of you ( easier said than done!).
The most important thing is to keep the knee tracking over the foot of the supporting leg. Sets of 10 on each leg will do the trick. Top tip, start on a high chair and get lower as your strength improves. Pistol squats in no time!
2. For a deep squat you need to have good hip mobility so get stretching. Hip flexor stretches and leg swings are my favorite. Always start your workout with the swings and make sure you finish your session with a hip flexor stretch on each leg.
The hip flexor stretch
Personal Trainer Katie demonstrating the leg swing
3. If you are a beginner a great place to start to build on leg strength for squatting is the step up. Pick a height you are comfortable with, a bench or chair and simply step up and down. You can add hand weights as your strength increases.
The step up
4. If you have poor ankle flexibility you can almost certainly expect facing problems when squatting. Stand with the balls of your feet on a step or ledge and the heels hanging over and slowly lower the heels you get to bend your ankle. This can help flexibility plus there is the bonus of a nice calf stretch.
Make sure you hold onto something or someone so you don’t topple over! Raise and lower the heels slowly. I like to do 10-15 reps when I stretch.
The ankle stretch
Go away and add these 4 simple movements into your weekly workouts, good luck and get that booty to the floor!