Monday, November 15, 2010

A squat a day keeps the doctor away

     Hello everyone in Internet-land, I hope you had a wonderful weekend! I'm hoping you used your "sabbath" to hit an MWOD or two and rest up for the upcoming week... if not, shame on you. Ok, I'll stop giving you a hard time. For what it's worth, you're alright in my book.

See, even Bill thinks your cool

     Well, pleasantries aside, we're going to talk again about a very vital part of CrossFit... the Squat! I know you've heard it before (I hear it all the time), "Squatting that low will hurt your knees". I've heard this time and time again. When I ask people why, they have no answer for me. Well, today, I'm going to arm you with the rebuttal to shoot their not-full-squatting asses down! Ok, maybe not that spiteful, but at least you may be able to sell them on why we do what we do.

Front Squat     /     High-Bar Back Squat     /     Low-Bar Back Squat

     In all fairness, Squatting below parallel is actually safer and easier on your knees. What do I mean by below parallel? Well look at the pictures above... that's what I mean. The crease of your hips are below your kneecaps. So how is this safer?

     When were squatting, the big 3 muscles that are being used are your quads (front of your thigh), adductors (inside of your thigh) and your hamstrings/glutes (back of your thigh/ass). Now, without getting too complicated, your adductors connect the groin to the femur and, as a result, pull back on the knee when tightened. Your hamstrings connect from the back of the thigh to the front of the tibia, and wrap around both sides of the knees. Once again, when tightened, they will pull back on the knee. Both the hamstrings and adductors will pull from behind the knee. The quads, however, creating a pulling force forward of the knee. Thus, when we reach proper depth, and all the muscles are pulling correctly, there is the correct balance of pulling posterior and anterior (back and front) of the knee. Not confused too much, right?

     Well, Think about it like this. Why are partial squats bad for you? Well, when you don't reach full depth, the hamstrings and adductors are not tightened and creating the proper pulling force, and the movement becomes quad dominant. This means the knee is being forced forward, instead of remaining neutral, like it is in a full squat.

     My attempt today was to teach, and not confused... I hope I achieved the former, rather than the later. If nothing else, enjoy the video posted below. Have a great day everyone!

Office Space Trailer - recut from David Smith on Vimeo.

3,2,1 Squat!

No comments:

Post a Comment