Do the Perfect Squat for You: 10 Variations from Beginner to Advanced
The squat is an amazing lower body exercise, but many people "can't do squats" due to pain or mobility issues. Luckily, there are "so many different squat variations" to choose from. This guide will help you "pick the variation that's right for you."
Start with the "lying heel push." Lay on your back, put heels into the floor, and push to activate leg muscles. This preps those with back, knee, or other pain to eventually squat again.
Progress to "seated heel pushes." Do the same heel activation, but now in a seated position. This step strengthens before adding movement.
Move to "supported sit to stands." Use your arms to assist squatting up and down from a chair. Focus on form - weight in heels, knees aligned, hinging from hips. This builds strength safely.
Do "sit to stands" without hands next. Go slow, maintaining mind-muscle connection. Then try faster, but only as form allows. Extend hips fully at the top for "triple extension."
Add a small "sit to hop" off the chair. Land softly and reset after each rep. This teaches absorbing impact, crucial for walking/running.
Graduate to "squat hops" without the chair. Again, stick the landing lightly and reset between each hop. Stay patient and mindful.
Up the intensity with "jump and lands." Try to jump as high as you can with good form. Treat each rep individually.
Finally, do "jump squats" continuously. Squat down and explosively jump back up. Be sure to land softly and absorb impact.
Try each variation for 1 minute. Pick the hardest one you can do well, then practice it 3x/week to build leg strength. Let us help you find just the right squat! Your knees will thank you.