Big movements like the squat can be easy to perform if you know the correct technique. If not then it can be a easy way to cause an injury to yourself.
When performing a squat you want to focus on a couple key areas, such as;
Range of Movement
These four keys things can be the difference between great form and injury. So first of all lets focus on Feet Position.
Before starting any movement, focus on where your feet are. Make sure you are standing with your feet shoulder width apart, with your knees slightly pointing out at a angle. Why? because you are positioning the width of your feet in a comfortable position where you don't feel valuable with both balance and slipping. The reason for the knee angle is based on the movement of the squat, commonly knees will buckle in when put under pressure, so instead you are allowing yourself to instead push the knees out to counteract it.
Next up is weight balance, this is key as it will cause the many balance issues during the squat. When performing the movement it is key to keep your weight back on your heels, causing your feet to stay flat to the floor. This allows the weight of the movement/bar to travel in the straight line down your body and into your heels. One of the many issues is that people move onto their toes when performing the squat, which is either caused by bad form or other issues such as poor ankle mobility or T-spine restriction. Both can be developed and solved so you can perform a squat correctly.
Then we have Posture, this is key for the smoothness of the movement when squatting. Focus on chest forward, shoulder blades back, engaging your core, and then when lowering through the movement of the squat, push your glute back and allowing the body to lower to the floor through the bending of the knees not the hinging/arching of the back. The common issues when squatting is arching through the spine, because they are forcing the lowering movement which they can’t get anymore through the bending of the knees. This again could because because of issues with ankle stiffness or restriction through the T-spine, but also maybe tightness through the lower body muscles. There are many different exercises which can be performed to help this such as squatting down onto a bench and standing back up, see if you can do this whilst keeping good posture.
The last point is Range of Movement, now even though this won’t cause injury, what can happen when talking about range of movement is people over loading the squat with weights they are perform because instead of focusing on a deeper squat, they are instead going for a heavier squat. A lot of people won’t go below knee height when performing a squat, but will instead load the bar up, which could instead cause more chance of injury. So why not focus on keeping good form and getting lower to the floor, therefore applying more pressure to the quads, glutes & hamstrings instead of adding more weight to the movement.
Hopefully these four key points will help you next time you are squatting. For anymore questions about the squat, please do comment on this post.