Squat Every Day for Rehab and Health
Since my very first day in the gym, I’ve been told that squats are bad for the knees. Instead of performing squats, we are told to do movements like leg extensions and leg curls for long term structural integrity.
Squats are a movement done by those wanting gains at any cost, even if it costs their health.
Related – Squat Every Day Challenge and Workout
Squats are a primal movement. Humans can’t survive without it (primitively speaking of course). Squats can also give you the best of all worlds: core strength, hip mobility, and more.
Sixty percent of all people on this planet don’t have toilets. So how do they poop? They SQUAT. They squat deep, hold the position, and they poop. Period, the end.
In this developed nation, we complain about something as primitive as squatting to poop as being “unnatural.” Ever hear of someone “leg extending” to pinch a loaf? I didn’t think so. Squatting is as natural as dropping a deuce!
Learn why squatting every day is great for big and healthy wheels.
Movement specialist, Australian national powerlifting champion Nathan Baxter (Baxter Strength Systems in Perth, Australia) is a huge fan of squatting every day for health. In fact, he is the one that enlightened me on this strategy.
“Squatting every day, some type of squat – heavy or light, goblet, front, back doesn’t matter – will make you good at squatting. And if you are good at squatting you’ll also have healthy low back, hips and knees. Now if you’re bad at squatting, well, that’s a fast track to pain and dysfunction. Be good at squatting.” – Nathan Baxter.
Nathan Baxter KNOWS heavy lifts!
My hip mobility has been an issue for a very long time. I injured my pelvis playing high school football 20 years ago. My squats have always been a weakness, and getting “in the hole” or below 90 degrees is uncomfortable and sometimes downright painful.
As a man who has squatted over 600lbs, NOT pain free, I had to do something about this. I employed all EXOS rehab methods from pillar prep, to mini-band work, to deep tissue massage. It all helped, but didn’t fix the issue.
And while my legs are a strength, I am in the school of thought that legs can never be too big, lean and muscular. It doesn’t stop there…
I recently obtained my CrossFit certification, and am now a CrossFit L-1 trainer. During the seminar, the instructor was asked, “How can I improve my squat?” Her answer was simple and had no hesitation behind it. Her answer was simply, “Squat. Squat daily.”
So, the controversial CrossFit methodology was in perfect agreement with perhaps one of the best movement specialists in the world… The best way to squat is to “squat” and the best movement for functional and structural health is the… Squat!
Squatting Every Day Training Plan
But unlike other squat every day programs, this isn’t about building big legs. That will come from the normal leg day. This program is about health, wellness and adhering to components of recovery.
So why didn’t I write about this sooner? Simple… I need to try it. After four weeks, I am walking better, low back pain is pretty much gone and squatting is nearly pain free… At least MUCH better than it has been since the year 1997.
This program is set as a warm-up for your normal training. If you train more than three times a week, just use it as a warm-up. If you have access to a gym or a home gym, do this daily.
If you go in to train chest, simply complete this circuit before your regularly scheduled chest workout as a “warm-up.” If at home and you have a dumbbell, do some goblet squats. Simple, to the point, and healthy!
Here is the deal:
- Select 50% of your working weight. For me, I work with 405lbs for 8-10 reps, so I just round up to 225lbs as my “max weight.” It doesn’t have to be exact.
- Select two build-up weights to get to that weight. For me, at 225, I choose 135lbs and 185lbs. For 135lbs, it would be 95lbs and 115lbs. For 315lbs, it would be 135lbs and 225lbs. Simple, not exact, but perfect for what we need.
- It will be designed for six total sets. BUT prior to this we will also do some pillar prep and bodyweight squats or goblet squats. Choose a weight you can get for 10 reps on the goblet squats and bodyweight is just… You! do 3 total sets of goblet squats or bodyweight squats.
- You will do 6 total sets. Using my 225lb example:
- Set 1: 135 x 8
- Set 2 135 x 8
- Set 3: 185 x 5
- Set 4: 185 x 5
- Set 5: 225 x 3
- Set 6: 225 x 3
Then do your normal workout, that simple! If a leg day that contains squats, just do your normal squat program in lieu of this. Do this as many days a week as possible, everyday if you can.
As for pillar prep, see how to do this here. If you feel the weight it too light or WAY too easy, make it harder. Raise it my 10% on all three segments of the session. Thus, for my 225lb example:
- 150lb for 2 sets of 8
- 205lb for 2 sets of 5
- 250lb for 2 sets of 3
Try this for one month. I GUARANTEE you will feel better than ever and you might even have to buy new skinny jeans to fit those quads of the GODS! Enjoy the gains!