The Squat: The Universal Movement

On November 9, 2013 by Matthew Chan

The Squat is a universal movement that all physical art forms share in one form or another. Various forms of the squat are used in martial arts, combat, dancing, yoga, qigong, gymnastics, aerobics, and of course, weight training–it is used as an exercise to build strength and stamina, to generate force, to help find ones center, etc.

The legs are to the body what the trunk is to a tree. The stronger the tree trunk is, the more the tree can grow, develop and branch out. Strong legs are the foundation of a great physique–aesthetically and functionally.

If you ask a martial artist where each punch and kick begins, he will tell you it begins from the feet and the legs. Ask anybody who can bench 500 pounds, and he will tell you that leg drive is a huge factor in successful pressing.

As strength coach Mark Rippetoe puts it:

“There is simply no other exercise, and certainly no machine, that provides the level of central nervous activity, improved balance and coordination, skeletal loading and bone density enhancement, muscular stimulation and growth, connective tissue stress and strength, psychological demand and toughness, and overall systemic conditioning than the correctly performed full squat.” – Mark Rippetoe

If you are fortunate enough to have functioning legs, go squat!

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