The Bodyweight Squat : Guide to Perfect Form

How to do a perfect bodyweight squat

How to do a perfect squat

The squat is one of the easiest bodyweight exercises you can do. They are easy to perform, and due to the nature of the exercise, it can burn calories faster than most other bodyweight exercises. This is because the squat works out your gluteus maximusthe quadriceps, the hamstrings, and lastly, the erector spinae. Among these large muscle groups is  the gluteus maximus, the largest muscle in your body, and by working them out, you strain them against all of your upper body weight, repeatedly.

Let’s get down to the form. As seen in the picture above, you start by standing straight, with your feet placed about shoulder length apart. As you begin to bend your knees, imagine you are sitting on a chair, once your femur (big thigh bone) is parallel to the ground, you should stop for one second, then slowly come back up. Remember, when doing bodyweight training, or calisthenics, you need to take your time. It may be hard to get used to at first but once you are able to relax, so to say, and focus on the exercise, taking your time with each and every rep, you’ll come to prefer it that way and you’ll work the muscles a lot harder.

In case I didn’t do a good job of explaining it this time, here is a video that might help you get a better idea of how it’s done.

This video is only about a minute long.

If you work hard enough at the squat, you can look forward to setting a goal to be able to do some of the much harder variations, such as the one-legged squat, ass-to-floor style.  Here is a little demonstration of what this looks like as motivation.

 You might say to me, “But Alex, he uses a weight in that video!”. As I’ve said before, there is nothing wrong with using weights. With bodyweight training, despite all the crazy variations, with enough dedication, you still might get to a point where your own bodyweight isn’t enough to thoroughly exercise your muscles without needing to spend too much time at it. If you get to a point where some exercises get too easy for you (if you are reading this post, you likely aren’t there yet), feel free to pick up a kettlebell or a dumbbell  plate, as long as you are able to keep good form.

Hopefully this helps you out, after a few more posts on how to do the basic bodyweight exercises, I’ll go into some other topics like  interval training, diets, and importance of cardio, and how you can tie them all together.

If there is something you’d like me to go over, let me know in the comments below!

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Posted in Calisthenics, Introduction to Calisthenics

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