Squats are probably among the most accessible types of exercises one can perform. They can be enjoyed anywhere, with the condition that you have a solid base under your feet, and can be adapted to answer to your personal requirements. In other words, you can use the weight of your body for squats or variations to increase the intensity of your training. For this, you can use additional weights, like dumbbells, or more advanced pieces of equipment, like leg press equipment. With the help of such machines, performing squats will be taken to another level.
So, why is it so great to perform squats? Believe it or not, this exercise has a wide range of benefits to enjoy, more than just getting toned muscles in your legs. While it is true that most people perform squats to get fitter legs, this exercise can do so much more for you. Here are some of the 6 most important health benefits connected to performing squats.
1. The risks for you to get injured will decrease dramatically
One of the best methods that will help you stay away from unwanted injuries is to strengthen your muscles and improve your mobility. Squat exercises do exactly this for you, by making sure your lower body part becomes better prepared to deal with accidents. Once you have stronger muscles, you will gain the ability to perform a wide range of movements and postures and maintain your balance better, this way reducing the possibility of injuries to occur. Besides strengthening the muscles of your legs, squats will also boost the strength of your tendons and ligaments, so much needed to keep your joints from getting injured.
2. It improves the strength of your core muscles as well
While squats are known for developing lean muscles in the legs and tone your bottom, it is worth mentioning that this exercise will also boost the strength of your core muscles. Strong core muscles are more than just displaying a 6-pack ab. Developing strength in your body’s core area means an improved balance and a lower risk of developing back pain and discomfort. When the muscles of your core are developed well, it will be easier for you to maintain a correct body posture when walking and sitting, reducing the occurrence of painful back episodes.
So, when you perform squats, you will also activate your core muscles and train them as well. A great variation of this exercise is back squats. This type of squat will target precisely the muscles that support your spine so that you’ll reduce the risk for back injuries and pain in the future.
3. It will help you burn calories more effectively
What’s the main motivation that pushes people to start exercising? They want to lose weight, of course, which translates into burning more calories during the day. Believe it or not, squats can help you burn calories more effectively than other types of exercises. To increase the intensity of your squat training, add some weights to the combination. If you do so, your body will be challenged and will end up burning a higher number of calories. To get an idea of how many calories can be burned with the help of squats, you should know that a person weighing 155 pounds can burn up to 233 calories during a 30 minutes training with squats in an intense manner and by using weights as well.
4. Your physical strength and athletic abilities will be much improved
If you’re looking to become more athletic, consider performing jump squats. They will contribute to developing stronger muscles in the legs, which will implicitly help you become faster and more resilient. For example, if you choose to perform jumping squats three times a week, for a period of eight weeks, you will notice improvements in your sprint time and even explosive strength. In other words, you will become more athletic than you use to be before. This will turn you into a competitive participant for marathons and other sporting competitions.
5. It’s hard to get bored with squats with so many options available
While squats may appear like dull exercises that can get boring in time, the truth is that they are rather versatile. If you are a beginner, not being used to exercising, you will first have to master regular squats. Then once you gain sufficient physical resilience and muscular strength, you will be able to enjoy a wide range of variations for this exercise.
For starters, you can perform squats by simply using the weight of your body. At first, this will be enough. But if you are consistent in performing your squats, you will soon notice that your sets of squats become easy. In this case, to increase the intensity of your training routine, you can add weights, such as dumbbells and kettlebells. Squats can also be performed with medicinal balls, yoga balls, and even by using various exercising machines, like the previously mentioned less press machine. So, as you can see, squats are by far boring and can be easily integrated into a creative and exciting workout routine.
6. You can perform them anywhere you want
Squats give you the freedom to perform exercises anywhere and anytime. Whether you’re in your room, in the backyard, on the beach, in the park, at the gym, you can easily complete a set of squats. All you need is some willpower and your body’s own weight to make it happen. In times when going to the gym seems like a distant goal, having the possibility to exercise at home is extremely important for your physical and mental health alike.
If you’re not used to doing squats or you’re not having a great physical condition at the moment, aim at performing 50 squats per day. Split these squats into two sessions. Thus, perform 25 squats in the morning and 25 more squats in the evening. As this routine becomes more comfortable for you, a sign that your muscles are getting stronger, perform an additional 25 squats at noon. This way, you will exercise without feeling the load of long and strenuous workout sessions.