Exercise The Right Way - The Back Squat

Other articles in this series looked at a number of exercises, mainly from the perspective of developing a comprehensive muscle building program. Sometimes we take things for granted, especially when it comes to performing the basic exercises that constitute the core of most bodybuilders' training regimes.

It is useful, therefore, to describe in detail the processes involved in actually doing these exercises. This will help beginners to start out using the correct techniques before moving on to potentially more dangerous heavy weights. If it also helps more experienced lifters to redress some of the little faults that have almost imperceptibly crept in over the years, all the better.

In this article we'll take a close look at the back squat.

MUSCLES TARGETED: gluteus maximus, semimembranosus, semitendinosus, biceps femoris, vastus lateralis, vastus intermedius, vastus medialis, rectus femoris

STARTING POSITION

Grasp the bar with a closed pronated grip.
Step under the bar and position the feet parallel to each other.
Place the bar in a balanced position on the upper back and shoulders.
Hold the chest up and out.
Pull the scapulae toward each other.
Tilt the head slightly up.
Extend the knees and hips to lift the bar.
Take one or two steps.
Place the feet shoulder width apart, even with each other with the toes pointed slightly outward.
This is the starting point for all repetitions.

DOWNWARD MOVEMENT

Allow the hips and knees to slowly flex.
Maintain a flat back, high elbows, with the chest up and out.
Keep the heels on the floor with the knees aligned over the feet.
Keep flexing the hips and knees until the thighs are parallel to the floor.

UPWARD MOVEMENT

Extend the hips and knees at the same rate.
Maintain a flat back, high elbows, with the chest up and out.
Keep the heels on the floor with the knees aligned over the feet.
Keep extending the hips and knees to return to the starting position.
Repeat or finish set.

Richard Mitchell is the creator of the bodybuildingadvisor.com website that provides guidance and information to athletes at all levels of bodybuilding experience. Go to Bodybuilding Exercises to learn more about the issues covered in this article.

In The News:


Smithsonian

Veggie Power? Artificial Muscles Made From Blinged-Out Onions
Smithsonian
Popeye made spinach famous as a muscle-building vegetable. But veggies might someday make you stronger without being eaten—when scientists use them to build a new class of artificial muscles. This week a team in Taiwan unveiled gold-plated onion ...
Muscles Made of OnionsPacific Standard
Scientists turn onion cells into artificial musclesBig News Network.com

all 46 news articles »

Men's Fitness

Five Fitness Experts on How to Stay Shredded All Season Long
Men's Fitness
But once you've gotten yourself where you want to be, then comes keeping it on point all year. We spoke with five life-long fitness experts to answer five of the most common questions about building muscle, burning fat, and staying lean all year ...


Yahoo Health

Build Lean Muscle With Plyometrics — No Weights Required
Yahoo Health
In this Yahoo Health video, fitness and nutrition coach Adam Rosante, author of The 30-Second Body, demonstrates four easy plyometric moves to shed fat and build muscle that anyone can do, no weights required. Start with plie jumps, standing with your ...


Philly.com (blog)

How to effectively build muscle in women
Philly.com (blog)
Now that you know why building muscle is critical, it's important to understand how to do it effectively. Women may find it more challenging to build muscle than men due to genetics and hormones. Some women may need to focus on decreasing body fat in ...


Lifehacker Australia

Stop Relying On Genetics And Build Muscle With Science
Lifehacker Australia
The rest of the guide talks about how to build muscle and how long it takes. (Spoiler alert: It takes longer than you think.) The guide is quite long (four parts and 8000 words) but it's one of the most comprehensive evidence-based resources out there ...


Doctor Tipster

How Much Protein do you need to Build Muscle?
Doctor Tipster
Starting from the 90s, till today the concept of protein powders as the wonder drug has been promoted to the people who want to build muscles. Protein shakes, anabolic steroids and other protein powders are available in the market for people who want ...


The Daily Meal

Foods Men Should Eat If They're Trying to Build Muscle
The Daily Meal
OK, guys: you already lost the weight. Now it's time to get toned. So you've begun lifting heavier weights, focusing on your core, and bench-pressing impressive sets. However, no matter how many reps you do, your muscles are not getting that sculpted, ...


Yahoo Health

10 Meat-Based Meals Guaranteed To Build Muscle
Yahoo Health
People are scared of red meat, but if you eat the right kinds in the right amounts, it's totally fine. In fact, it's a great source of quality, muscle-building protein. Just take the recipes from the 21-Day Shred Cookbook for example. The Steak with ...


Jackson Clarion Ledger

Rebecca Turner: Build muscle mass as you age
Jackson Clarion Ledger
Strength is more than a term for gym rats. Regardless of your age or fitness level building and maintaining muscle mass should be a top priority. Why? Because lean muscle is the furnace in which calories are burned and energy is stored. Without ...


Elite Daily (blog)

Muscle-Building Supplements Linked to Testicular Cancer
Medscape
Men who use muscle-building supplements (MBSs) that contain creatine or androstenedione may have up to 65% increased risk of developing testicular cancer, according to a case-control study published online March 31 in the British Journal of Cancer.
Study finds troubling link between use of muscle-building supplements and cancerWashington Post
Study Draws Link Between Muscle-Building Supplements And Testicular CancerSTGIST
Muscle-Building Supplements Might Increase Risk Of Testicular CancerElite Daily (blog)
WebMD.Boots.com
all 65 news articles »
Google News

A Very Simple Program Anybody Can Follow To Gain MASS

Until I started following a routine to eat, my gains... Read More

What Causes Muscle Growth?

In order for muscles to grow, three things are required:... Read More

Waist Your Breath - Breathing For A Thinner Waist

The crunch exercise is the backbone of abdominal training. It... Read More

Do Electric Ab Stimulators Really Work?

Electronic muscle stimulators are the latest craze, the hottest fad...... Read More

Gain Weight Fast With These Ten Powerful Tips! Part -2

By the time you finish reading this you will have... Read More

Key Elements for a Bigger Bench Press

Proper positioning on a weight bench to maximize leverageKeep the... Read More

Overcoming Fears And Unproductive Thinking

You might sometimes wonder whether your dedication and sacrifice will... Read More

Machine Exercises That Suit Beginners

The aim for beginners to weight training must be to... Read More

The Importance of Maintaining A Weight Training Log

Do you find gyms intimidating? Feel lost while doing your... Read More

Bodybuilding Sins That Cause Back Pain and Missed Workouts: Part 5

Welcome to article number five in our 5-part series "Bodybuilding... Read More

How to Lose the Most Fat and Build the Most Muscle in 30 Days

A lot can happen in 30 days.The dream of everyone... Read More

Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle (Lose Body Fat) - Product Review

At first glance, this product manual's title (Burn the Fat,... Read More

3 Amazing Ways to Shape Up Your Muscles in Less Than 7 days!

Imagine you need to look great to get all the... Read More

Protein or Carbohydrates?

This has got to be the biggest controversy in modern... Read More

Exercise The Right Way - One-Arm Dumbbell Rows

Other articles in this series looked at a number of... Read More

Exercise The Right Way - The Leg Press

Other articles in this series looked at a number of... Read More

Weight Training Terminology For Beginners

Weight training is one of the best ways to shape... Read More

The Superset Advantage

Supersets give you the most bang for the buck. They... Read More

Sneak a Little Intensity into Your Workout

You know you're on autopilot during your workouts when, halfway... Read More

3 Biggest Benefits of Strength Training

Strength training is exercise that uses resistance to strengthen and... Read More

Muscle Soreness After Exercise

Many individuals judge the quality of their exercise session from... Read More

Strength Training Strategies that Actually Work

Over the years there has been a surge of different... Read More

Fitness & Muscle Building Know How for Hard Gainers

Hard gainers are individuals who train equally hard as other... Read More

Weight Gain Myths

The vast majority of myths about weight gain are mostly... Read More

Always Shock Your Muscles For Maximum Growth

Always try to "trick" your muscles into growth. You never... Read More