Squat Basics: The Back Squat

May 8, 2017

Last month we learned why the squat is an awesome exercise. Squats are a functional movement that can help improve many daily activities from walking to stair climbing. Proper squatting means gaining strength and mobility within the entire body.


There are many types of squats including split squats, pistol squats and overhead squats, to name a few. This post will cover back squats.


Now you know what that rack at the gym is for!

Back squats or high/low bar squats refer to where the bar rests on the back. The low bar squat is the most common form for beginners. Start by stepping under the bar and placing your hands around it. The width of your grip will depend on flexibility. Starting wider is easier and then slowly bring it in as you increase flexibility. Once the bar is on your back, stand up, brace yourself through the core (tighten glutes and flex your stomach) and step back. Squat down slowly with feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, toes pointed out slightly, and butt back. You should drop so the tops of your legs are parallel or lower, then stand back up.


The high bar squat is set up the same way with a slight variation on your grip. Instead of placing the bar on your back on your rear deltoids, you place the bar about two inches higher up, on your traps. The bar will then lie across your shoulders. The bar should never be on your spine. If it is, it’s too high. This version of the squat will require you to keep your torso more upright. You can always keep the weight low until you perfect it.


Things to look out for during your squats are ankle and hip mobility, good posture, core stability within the entire movement, proper tracking of knees over toes and all of it should be pain-free! 

Don't forget, if you'd like more hands-on instruction you can always book a session with one of our certified trainers.


Happy squatting!




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