6 Essential Mobility Exercises Before you Back Squat

March 19, 2019

Back squats are arguably one of the most powerful lifts that can be mastered, they are terrific for burning fat, building lean muscle mass and building explosive power.

One of the common mistakes we see clients make, is rushing the process. Not allocating enough time to their pre squat warm up, loading up the bar behind their ability and causing a handful of injuries to their lower back, hips or knees.

Our strength and conditioning coach, John Champion has put together his essential pre-squat mobility routine, we recommend you do around 10 -12 reps on each exercise before warming up under the bar.

Exercise 1: Front Leg Swing

Forward and backward leg swings are a dynamic warm-up for the lower body that improves hip mobility and prepares the body for physical activity.

Stand tall with your feet flat on the floor and your hands on your hips or with your one hand gripping the back of a chair for balance. Lift one straight leg up and swing it straight forward and then backward in a controlled pendulum-like fashion. Return to the starting position.

Exercise 2: Side Leg Swing

Excellent warmup for lower body lateral movements, improves balance, mobility, and coordination.

Facing a stable object and holding on for balance, stand on one foot by raising your opposite hip off the ground.

Swing your leg in front of and across your body, then out to the side. Feel the stretch in your inner thigh, then outer thigh and booty.
Return: Repeat with your other leg.

Exercise 3: Knee Rotations

This exercise will prevent you from any Acl, Meniscus Injuries, Tears. Placing both palms on your Knees moving around in a circular motion with knees slightly bend.

Exercise 4: Ankle Rotations

Stand on one foot. Raise the opposite foot a few inches off of the floor.
Without moving your leg, rotate your ankle in a large circle in one direction.

Avoid extra movement from the hips during the exercise. Keep the hips stable and allow the majority of the movement to come from the ankle.
Try to make the largest circles possible within your flexibility range.

Exercise 5: Air Squat

Step 1: Stand with your feet hip-width apart with your toes pointed slightly outward. Your arms should be hanging loose by your side. Then engage your core muscles and push out your chest slightly by pulling your shoulder blades towards each other.

Step 2: Bend your knees and squat down as if you were sitting into a chair. Keep your weight on your heels and keep your core tight.. Make an effort to keep your knees externally rotated (don’t let them collapse inward). As you lower down, you can either raise your arms straight in front of you or keep them bent in front of your chest. Focus on keeping your torso upright and core tight.

Step 3: Straighten your legs and squeeze your butt to come back up, lowering your arms back to your side.

Exercise 6: Cossack Squat

Another stretch aimed straight at the groin, the Cossack squat will do wonders for the long adductors inside the thigh. Both legs get worked in their own special way, so pay special attention to your form.

Assume a wide stance with your toes pointed out about 45 degrees, or essentially a sumo-squat position. Now lower your hips to get into a deep stretch position and bend your elbows, which should be hovering right around knee level.

Deliberately slide your hips from one side to another as far as you can go while keeping the same-side heel down to the floor, your torso more or less upright, and chest proud. Your outstretched, trailing leg will go straight with the heel down and toes pointed up.

Our next video will be taking you through the basic step by step technique on how to safely perform the back squat., Make sure you subscribe below to keep upto date with this great content.

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