Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tighten + Tone Tuesday

Happy Tighten + Tone Tuesday! In our last post we told you that the squat is a must-do strength training move. However, you need to do it properly!  That's why this week we're focusing on perfecting your squat form.  Get ready to work those legs and up your metabolism!

Step One:  Start with your feet shoulder-width apart and feet slightly pointed out. Stand up straight and pull your shoulders down.  Contract your abs to stabilize your core.

Step Two: Keeping your chest lifted and chin parallel to the floor, shift your weight to your heels, inhale, and begin the downward phase by bending your knees and hips at the same time.  Pretend you're about to sit in a chair. 

Step Three: Continue to lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor.

Check yourself before you wreck yourself with these tips and a friendly mirror:

        __Knees are in line with NOT over your toes (really stick that booty back!)
        __Abs/Back are engaged (muscles contracted)
        __Back is flat (no arch in the low back or tail bone tuck!)
        __Your body weight is focused in your heels and balls of the feet NOT in your toes

Step Four: Exhale and return to standing by pushing through your heels while keeping your core (abs and back) engaged.  Your hips and torso should rise together. 

Aim to complete this move for 10-15 repetitions three times during your routine. 

Here are some visuals to help you perfect your form from our friends over at ACE Fitness:

Did you squat it out today? Did these form tips help you? Let us know with a comment below: