Based on the tens of thousands of people I’ve trained and the now popular clips and videos seen on the internet, I would guess about 1% of the world’s population can perform a proper squat correctly.
It’s not that everybody can’t do it, I think one reason is the terrible advice that is being given with no real logic behind it.
Today, you’ll get a chance to see if you are on your way to becoming a great lifter or if you’re doing more harm than good with each rep you make.
Either way, it’s never too late to change. You can be a great lifter if you want to! I know you can!
The First Thing I teach My Clients
When I first meet someone here at my gym; as we begin the basic training portion, the firs thing I do is ask them if they know how to squat.
The majority of the time the answer is the same. “Yes, I’ve been doing squats for a while”.
I then say: “fantastic! Would you mind demonstrating one for me please”.
It is in that demonstration where the squat’s biggest and most common flaw is exposed.
This weakness is by far the biggest reason I believe the percentage of people who know how to squat is about 1%.
How is this so?
You are very talented. Your potential is limitless and I would bet 1000 bucks that you love training so much that your passion is sky high!
So what wrong?
It’s not you, it’s your coach.
We are all taught by books, courses, coaches and nowadays, videos on the internet. And of these individuals, very few know the squat mechanics.
Sadly, some of the internet’s most popular fitness and performance websites have videos on how to squat. And for the majority (almost all), the same flaw I see when I first meet a client is in almost each and every one of those videos.
This flaw, if removed, is what makes the squat the squat!
It’s what separates the best from the rest, it’s what keeps your knees and back safe and it’s what gets you the body you want, the power you want and the core you want.
And if you’re not doing it, you’re going to learn it right now and begin to rock ‘n’ roll on the iron!
The Squat’s Most Common Flaw
The best way to coach a squat is to look from the back (posterior and the side (lateral view).
And it is from the side where you’ll spot the big flaw.
When standing upright, the bar is on your traps and it is over top of the heels. As someone begins to squat the barbell should travel in a straight line until you decide to stop and rise up again.
It doesn’t matter which type of squat you do, the bar should always travel in a straight line up and down.
Any movement of the bar forward causes a weight transfer and that weight transfer shifts much of the load to your quads and your back (depending how you rise up).
So What’s the Big Deal About The Bar Moving Forward?
Moving the bar forward transfers weight forward and one of two things happens.
1) You keep fairly straight and your bar movement comes from the knees, resulting in the quads absorbing most of the load. That means the knees too are taking some heavy shots.
If this is done, the glutes and hamstrings are not doing much and you can expect little change in shape, strength or tone back there.
This type of squatter is known as a “quaddie”.
2) You folded at the torso which resulted in the bar moving forward and to rise back up, you use your back.
There is also a combination of the two, however it is often a weak core (the core is everything from your knees to your shoulders) that is often a culprit.
There are other variables that we we’ll touch on some other time.
How Do I Fix This?
To fix this is easy if you’re open to it. However, just like when you train an athlete to move a new way, expect performance to dip a bit before it soars way up into the bright shine of the sun.
Here’ the video to help you along