Squats are a classic exercise for good reasons. Not only are they practical as squatting is or should be an everyday occurrence, they effectively load and thus strengthen the quadriceps (front of thigh) and gluteus maximus and gluteus medius (back and side of the pelvis). These muscles are not only important for general getting around mobility, they are hugely important for higher load activity such as sports and active recreation. Check out this press report on the importance of big gluteus maximus for sprinting performance (in summary, muscular bums are important for running fast): https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/oct/01/larger-bottoms-are-key-to-sprinting-success-study-finds
Maintaining strong quadriceps and strong gluteals are also recommended to keep your lower limbs in good health. Better conditioned muscles are linked to improved joint health. Keep strong and well co-ordinated and your joints are likely to be in better condition for longer throughout your life.
And of course these muscles also have an aesthetic appeal when well-conditioned.
Check out this video detailing four types of squats and how to perform them with healthy alignment: https://bit.ly/2INMGis
Maintenance of ideal lower limb alignment when squatting is strongly recommended not only to safe guard your lower limbs under load but also to enhance performance when squatting and during other high load activities. Ideal lower limb alignment involves maintaining the centre of the patella (knee cap) in line with the 2nd It also involves maintaining a foot arch and not letting the inner border of the foot arch drop down towards the floor but whilst maintaining contact with the floor through the 1st metatarso-phalangeal joint (ball of the 1st toe). Each individual will have a different foot arch height so there is no set height to achieve.
If you aren’t including squats in your weekly exercise then they are strongly recommended for enhanced everyday mobility, enhanced sports performance and to look good.
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