5 Ways Doing Squats Is Good For Your Fitness Routine
Squats are one of the most important exercise components of any workout or fitness program. Athletes and trainers alike always include squats (with or without squat racks) in their training programs. This exercise can provide a number of benefits to almost anyone, regardless of the level of fitness one is in. Such activity can provide individuals with the strength, flexibility, balance, and power that they can use for their activities of everyday living. In case you’re wondering why you should also include squats in your training program, here are 5 reasons why.
Provide The Foundation For Other Exercises
Squats are excellent foundation exercises which other exercises build upon.
For example, perfecting the art of squats can help individuals during weightlifting activities. Weightlifters have to rely on strong core and leg muscles so they can lift the barbell with relative ease. It is quite difficult to imagine a weightlifter not having strong legs and core muscles. It helps stabilize their stance so they will not sway from side to side. It also allows them to maintain their balance so that they can maneuver the weight straight up over their heads.
Marathoners and sprinters can also benefit from squats. These athletes require strong legs to help them run as fast or as long as they can. Sprinters depend on the full function of the joints of their lower extremities. Of course, they also need to develop their cardiovascular endurance. However, leg strength and knee and ankle flexibility can complement an athlete’s stamina. Ordinary individuals who run or jog can also benefit from squats. This exercise helps prepare them for running movements.
Triple jumpers and other similar athletes who need to jump long distances can also take full advantage of squats. Again, this exercise develops the muscles of the legs, thighs, and feet. It is understandable that these muscles should have the power necessary to propel the individual over some distance. The same is true for other track and field athletes. These activities require strong legs.
Swimmers can also benefit from squats. Whether it’s freestyle, butterfly, breaststroke, or backstroke, they will need stronger and more toned leg muscles.
Any sport, exercise, or activity that depends on the strength, power, and stability of the legs can benefit from squats. It is not surprising, therefore, that squats are a mainstay in many training programs.
Aid In The More Efficient Burning Of Fat
We have this notion that only cardiovascular exercises can help us burn fat. With an increase in respirations and heart rate comes a commensurate increase in metabolic rate. Increasing one’s metabolism facilitates the more rapid burning of stored fuel in the body. As such, cardio exercises are best for burning fat.
However, the fat-burning effects of cardio moves and exercises do not last that long. That is why many individuals who train exclusive with cardio exercises tend to gain weight a lot faster, too. This is because they do not build enough muscles to help in the fat-burning process.
Muscle tissues are more efficient when it comes to burning stored fat in the body. When you work your muscles, you are stimulating them to grow and become stronger. Moreover, as they work day in and day out, muscles can improve their tonicity. This is the key to a muscle’s more efficient fat-burning capabilities.
Muscle tone reflects the partial state of contraction of the muscle tissues. What this means is that it will still need energy to sustain this partially-contracted state. This energy comes from the stored fat in the body. You may be relaxing on your couch, but your muscles are still burning fat. The more muscle tissues that you build and strengthen, the more fat that you get to burn.
When you perform squats, you are strengthening the muscles of your body. Squats are an example of resistance training exercises. Athletes and trainers consider squats as a body weight exercise. The resistance that your muscles will have to work against is your own body weight. This way you can build additional muscle tissues while also strengthening existing muscles. Squats can also improve the tone of these muscles, helping improve the burning of fat.
Enhance The Mobility Of The Hips, Knees, And Ankles
Squats involve the contraction of the muscles of the thighs and legs. Since these limbs attach to the torso and the feet, you can expect the different joints to get sufficient exercise as well. These include the hips, knees, and ankles.
The joints are parts of the body that people often overlook whenever they train. The simple act of walking relies on the full range of motion of these joints. It is critical to understand that the joints allow the efficient movements of the limbs. You may have strong muscles, but if your joints are not functioning well, you may not be able to move in a more fluid manner.
Joints act as pivot points for two adjoining bones and their corresponding muscles. As these muscles stretch or contract, they pull on the opposing muscle groups. This is what facilitates movement. If the joints do not function at their optimum levels, then it will be impossible to move.
You will not be able to perform different exercises if your joints are dysfunctional. Running, biking, swimming, and skiing will be very difficult. Stepping onto a bench or performing lunges will also prove to be challenging. Running on the treadmill or riding the exercise bike can also be tough.
This can also have substantial implications in everyday life. Walking will be quite painful if not impaired. This can make going to the grocery or to the bathroom very taxing. Poor joint mobility can lead to poor quality of life.
Squats can help improve the range of motion of these joints. They can help you strengthen them, allowing for greater flexibility. Enhancing joint range of motion can also help you perform other activities in everyday life in a more efficient way.
Strengthen And Tone The Core Muscles
Performing squats can help strengthen the muscles of the core including the lower back, the abdominals, and the pelvic region. If you try to perform squats with weights, you can further strengthen these muscle groups.
The core muscles of the human body are important in helping you perform different exercises and physical activities. Almost every other exercise move requires strong core muscles. Weightlifting, for example, not only depends on strong leg and thigh muscles. This activity also needs strong muscles of the torso.
Doing squats can help you perform abdominal crunches, bridges, abdominal presses, segmental rotations, and many others. While these exercises can also help strengthen the core, adding squats can help you perform them a lot better.
A strong core doesn’t only help you prepare for other exercises. It can also have important implications in the real world. For example, lifting several books from one desk to another may look like the work of the muscles of the arms and hands. What many do not realize is that lifting also requires the strength of the core muscles. This allows you to maintain your balance so you do not fall. As a matter of fact, weak core muscles are often the culprit in many injuries that people sustain when lifting objects.
There’s another reason why squats are great for any training program. This is a good way to define your buttocks and hips. Given that some individuals who train want to achieve a more defined body, squats can help sculpt this body part. It’s also a great way to sculpt the abs to give you a more defined look.
Help Improve Balance And Posture
Adding squats in your training program can also help improve your posture and balance. Different exercises require you to balance yourself, either on your feet or on a platform. Sitting on an exercise ball may look easy. But this activity requires the concerted contractions of the different groups of muscles of your core, hips, legs, and feet. If you cannot strengthen or tone these muscles, then balancing yourself on the exercise ball will be difficult.
The same is true when you’re performing the T-stance exercise. It will be challenging to accomplish this exercise if you do not have a strong lower body and core muscles. Other exercises also depend on the maintenance of balance. If this is not maintained, there’s a possibility of falling and causing injuries.
Squats can also help improve your posture. Maintaining good posture helps reduce the risk of tissue injury since you’re able to maintain your center of gravity. This can also help reduce, if not eliminate, back pains and shoulder problems. Having these health concerns can affect your training program in a negative way. You will not be able to complete your exercises because of the discomfort that these health conditions bring.
Squats are more than simple body weight resistance exercises. They provide the foundation for many physical activities and exercises. As such, it is often wise to include squats in your training program whether you’re an athlete or a novice fitness buff.