28 May How to Squat to Save your Spine get a Bubble Butt
The other day I saw the cutest girl ever squatting her heart out… but she wasn’t using improper form… She was hurting her spine and wasn’t creating a bubble butt either. It’s particularly painful for me to see because I know how easily injuries can happen as a result from exercising without proper form… also, I know how bad injuries suck.
Now this is a touchy subject for me because my back was wrecked (I have 2 herniated discs in my spine) when a guy ran a red light and totaled my car. It’s physically painful for me to squat with (and sometimes without weights) now. I posted a Squat Challenge Episode of CCtv a few months after my car accident. I was physically cleared for exercise but alas… my mobility and ability is still being affected. Someone posted a comment on my video calling me out for having mobility issues while demo’ing some of the exercises in my squat challenge. Technically I was using the right form but I couldn’t complete the full range of motion.
But having someone catch it made me worried because I don’t ever ever want to mislead or misinform anyone in any way. Lots of ladies have commented that my squat challenge has gotten them amazing results… but I would be devastated an heartbroken if my squat challenge demos mislead anyone in any way with regard to proper from. Executing exercises with proper for is critical for making sure you get the best results and stay injury free….
Proper Form = Best Results
The sweet girl I saw in the gym and the feedback from my video inspired today’s episode of CCtv, 5 steps to do every time you squat to make sure you’re in proper form, getting the best possible results, burning the most calories while boosting your butt.
In this video I break down 5 ways to Squat to save your spine and get a bubble butt.
Step 1) Squat by Moving your Booty Back and Down
This is a big mistake I see… it may seem natural to lower your butt down towards the floor. But to target your butt muscles it’s really important that you hinge at your hips and drive your booty back and down. From a standing position with your feet shoulder width apart, squat down to about 90º, keeping your knees over your toes….
Step 1 blends into Step 2… which is…
Step 2) Stack your Knees Over your Toes when You Squat
Taking your butt back and down helps make sure your knees won’t stick out past your toes. It’s hella important your knees never go past your toes. You can blow out your knees this way, because your ligaments and tendons are hyperextending past their comfort zone… think of a rubber band… once you’ve stretched it ‘too far’ it become taught and will eventually snap. An easy breezy way to make sure your knees are less likely to venture forward towards your toes is to load your weight on your heels instead of your toes. You’ll also be able to get more depth to your squat increasing the benefit, adding more bubble to your butt.
Step 3) Squat with Neutral Posture
i.e. Face Forward, Chest Out/Shoulders Back
I can’t emphasize the importance of protecting your back by using neutral spine friendly posture enough. One major mistake people make when they squat is rounding their necks, looking around, or arching their backs… all of which throw the spinal alignment off automatically, making the squat a very dangerous exercise, especially if you are using a lot of weight. By keeping your shoulders back and your chest up out, your lower back will most likely have the correct natural curve. It’s important to keep your low back flat, with a natural arch as you squat. Heart up, shoulders back, look forward, and lower your butt back and down… not arching your back to pop your booty out. When you arch your back you’re loading your lumbar with weight, which can put significant pressure on the intervertebral discs, soft gel like cushions that protect your vertebrae. If one of those discs pop out… well, you’ll feel a whole world of pain… possibly for life.
Step 4) Squat with a Wide Stance
Use a stance with your feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart, and firmly planted on the ground. Slightly point your toes outward for extra stability. The wider your feet, the more muscles you work at once. More Muscles = More Calories Burned. Also, the wider stance ensures you’re working your glutes and hamstring (back of the leg), and the easier it will be to stabilize. The closer in you put your feet, the more your quadriceps will be emphasized (the front of the leg).
Step 5) Breathe and Squeeze as you Squat
Breathing is very important for squatting as you are lowering yourself, remember to take a deep breath in, then as you push up on your heels, breathe out forcefully as you squeeze your buns tightly. As you squeeze the air out of your lungs, squeeze your buns.
And that’s it, 5 steps to squat to save your spine and build a bubble butt. I hope these tips have been helpful for you, and if I left anything out that you think is important, or you have any questions, please leave a comment!
As always, it works it you work it!
Your Coach and Biggest Cheerleader