There are many reasons why a physiotherapist may recommend adding squats to your regular workout routine. After all, as exercises go, squats don’t require any special equipment, can be done in a relatively small space, and works out several muscle groups at once.
The most obvious benefit of doing squats is that they develop muscles mainly on your abdomen and backside. Doing regular sets of these help in the development of contoured legs and toned abs—which may do wonders for your self-esteem and body image. However, a less obvious benefit is that it helps strengthen ligaments and stabiliser muscles. This makes you less susceptible to athletic injuries and will improve your overall balance and flexibility!
If for any reason, you cannot do much exercise in a day, most physiotherapists and training coaches recommend that you should at least do a few squats. The good thing is that many of your everyday movements already involve some form of squat-type exercise.
Here are five movements that you are already doing every day, and how you can turn them into a proper squat exercise.
Getting in and out of a car
If you drive a sedan or a compact car, then the simple act of lowering yourself to enter your vehicle is already a form of the squat exercise. If you want that everyday motion to be beneficial to your body, you can turn it into a quick workout in the morning as you go out and in the afternoon as you park your car in your garage.
Getting a few reps in as you enter and exit your car every day and adding the other activities specified on this list will already be more squats than most do in a gym workout!
Walking up a flight of stairs
Instead of taking the elevator, you can squeeze in a few squats on the stairs as you walk up to your office floor. To turn it into a proper squat, increase your bends, and skip a step on the staircase while maintaining proper form. Doing this every day will build bulk muscle on your hips, which is ideal for developing toned muscles.
Picking up groceries
When picking up groceries from the floor, many people simply bend over, which is a bad idea for your spine at any age—especially if you’re picking up something heavy. To avoid back injuries and do useful exercise in the process, you can simply straighten your back, bend your knees, and lower your body as if doing a squat. The mere act is already a good stretch for your body, all while preventing the risks of spinal injuries from bending and lifting heavy loads.
Like picking up groceries, moving boxes is another thing that people simply bend over for, risking an injury on their back muscles. Assuming a proper squat form while picking up your packages will not only help you avoid back injuries, but will also strengthen your core muscles.
Sitting down and standing up from your chair
Sitting all day in your chair as you work can be incredibly fatiguing and is terrible for your overall health. In fact, studies have linked prolonged sitting to a higher risk of developing obesity, type II diabetes, heart disease, and experiencing depression and anxiety.
To mitigate these risks, physiotherapists recommend standing up from your desk for a few minutes every hour. To turn these motions into exercise, you can do a few squats before sitting down, and a few more once you get up again!
As you can see, there’s no excuse for not getting at least some exercise every day. Doing a few squats daily may not immediately put you at par with gym-goers, but it at least helps you prevent back injuries and helps tone your hip, backside, and abdominal muscles. This way, if you decide to go to the gym one day, you will be able to do more squat exercises and reach your weight and body shape goals much faster!
If you’re looking for physiotherapy treatment in Brisbane to help stretch out your muscles even further, then Anytime Physio has you covered. Our services include clinical pilates, dry needling, remedial massages, and much more. If you’re stuck at home and unable to go out, then we offer online physiotherapy services too! Get in touch with us and book our services today.