This weeks Home Exercise of the Week is a variation of the regular body weight squat. The 5 Squat Hold is an exercise that I like to add in to my training sessions and boot camps from time to time so people have another reason to curse and swear at me! I can just picture it now…sweaty people groaning, complaining, and wondering why they ever decided to do this. 😉
All kidding aside, the 5 Squat Hold is effective. You will be sculpting and strengthening your quads, hamstrings, and glutes. On top of all that, the hold part of the exercise will increase your muscular endurance. The benefits far outweigh the temporary pain and discomfort.
With any exercise, strict form is top priority. Some key points to remember when doing the 5 Squat Hold:
- Have your feet shoulder width apart with your toes pointed out slightly
- Squat down like you’re going to sit in a chair keeping your knees in line or behind your toes
- Stay as upright as possible. There is a tendency when squatting to lean over too much. Try to avoid this as doing so can hurt your lower back. To stay upright, stick your chest out, keep your head looking forward, and arch your back up slightly.
- Come down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. If you can’t go down that far at first just do what you can and over time you will be able to go lower
- As you are coming up out of the squat make sure that you are pushing up through your heels. If you push up through your toes, a lot of stress will be placed on your knees. We don’t want that! Pushing through the heel will put more of the strain on the working muscles
In the video, I said to hold for 5 seconds. That is a good time to start off with but if you want more of a challenge take each hold to 10 seconds. 1 set of this exercise would be 5 squats with a 5 – 10 second hold for 3 – 4 times through giving you 15 to 20 repetitions of squats total. To get a shoulder workout at the same time, hold your arms in front of you at shoulder height throughout the exercise and they will be burning too!
So there you have the 5 Squat Hold. Fire up your legs and let me know how you do!