The squat is probably one of the best compound exercises around due to the fact that it incorporates most of the muscles in the lower half of the body. Hamstrings, gluteus and quadriceps muscle groups all work together during this movement.

It is important to master the technique before squatting on heavy resistance or load. Adhere to the following steps to perform the exercise correctly. Common mistakes include people tending to place the bar too high up on the neck. If you feel down your cervical spine (7 vertebrae on the neck) you can quickly differentiate between the first six and the last one, which will be a bit bigger and more prominent than the rest. The golden rule is to always to place the bar under the seventh cervical vertebra and to let it rest on your shoulder muscles (trapezius and posterior deltoids).

Keeping the body upright and the core activated is a necessity. Another common mistake is that people tend to bend too far over when squatting down, which causes unnecessary pressure on the lower back. Instead keep a good anterior pelvic tilt and with an upright chest position looking up when going down. Keep the feet just outside shoulder width apart, with the knees slightly twisted outward. Never let the knees fall over the toe line when going down. Therefore, always stretch the Achilles tendon and calf muscles well.

Tight hips might also hinder someone from squatting deep enough. Doing hip external and internal stretches would help a lot to improve hip mobility.

Have fun mastering this technique and if you need any advice don’t hesitate to ask me. #Golf #SkillsforLife

Jan-Harm Venter

KeNako Academy Sport Scientist