Deep squats are the best squats– they recruit more muscle, burn more calories, and really help to build a strong butt. It used to be thought that doing deep squats is harmful for the front of your knees, but research has shown that isn’t the case. In fact, deeps squats could actually increase knee stability. Studies have shown that the anterior and posterior cruciate ligaments– which really help to stabilize the knee joint– have less force through them when the knee is bent more fully.
It is also much more efficient strengthening, in that parallel squats with more weight are less effective than deeper squats with a lighter weight to build up your booty and thighs. Your gluteus maximus is over 25% more engaged with a deep squat than a parallel squat.
That said, if you have a history of knee issues, there is nothing wrong with parallel squats, and speak with your physiotherapist to safely progress to deep squats as your mobility or strength allows.
Check out this video and others on our YouTube Channel, Elevation Physiotherapy & Wellness, for our One Minute Wellness tips on strength, mobility and balance.
We have previously mentioned how important it is to build strength through your core, as it acts as a canister that connects your upper and lower body. As you more your arms and legs, these movements either start in your core, or move through it. Relative weakness through this canister can affect how well your arms and legs function. If you are properly strengthening through your abs and the rest of the core muscles– including the pelvic floor– it jacks up the power that can be generated when you move. f you’re looking to build a stronger core, you’ll have to focus on more than just your six-pack muscles.
Your obliques, which are along the sides of your trunk, are very important stabilizers of your body– they help to bend your body to the side, help to rotate your torso left and right, and also act to resist your trunk from rotating. You need these muscles to be strong. Here’s how.
The “core” that everyone talks about is made up of the abdominal muscles on the front, your obliques on the sides, and the deep back muscles. Think of the core as a canister that connects your upper and lower body. As you more your arms and legs, these movements either start in your core, or move through it. Relative weakness through this canister can affect how well your arms and legs function. If you are properly strengthening through your abs and the rest of the core muscles– including the pelvic floor– it jacks up the power that can be generated when you move. A strong core also improves balance and stability through your body, so it can help prevent falls or injures in sports.
A strong, flexible core is important in everything that you do:
bending forward to put on shoes
turning to look behind you
reaching for something
golf, tennis, swimming, running– you name the sport, they are all powered by a strong core
A plank position is a great exercise to help build strength and endurance through your abs and the whole of your core. Like every exercise, form matters! Once you have your form down, make sure you’re performing this consistently to build strength. It can get monotonous to do the same exercise all the time, so check out these plank variations below.