How to Dumbbell Squat
About the Dumbbell Squat
By now, we can safely assume that you know what squats are, and how this simple exercise can greatly affect your workout routines, and what type of benefits it can bring to your body.
But if not, then here’s a quick refresher: As an exercise, squats are a simple low-impact workout routine with humongous, and we mean humongous benefits. This is because to do a squat, you need nothing more than a small space, and your own two feet. There’s absolutely no equipment involved whatsoever, yet the benefits you will get are just as great, if not even better.
Because of this, squats, and all the variations you can do on it, are easily recognized by a lot of people in the fitness industry simply because they impact the largest muscles we have in our bodies: our glutes and thighs. Not only that, but they’re also perfect for all bodybuilding beginners who want to build up muscle mass without going to great lengths. It’s also incredibly safe, and there’s no risk involved (unless you count falling on your back lightly is a risk).
As an added benefit, squats also give our body a huge metabolism spike, improving both our digestion and bowel movement. Additionally, they can also spur upper body growth while also burning a whole lot of calories that might otherwise get stored as excess fat.
But that’s not it yet, as these squats, perfect as they are, can also be improved by simply incorporating dumbbells into the mix.
Is Performing a Dumbbell Squat Safe?
When performing squats with proper technique, performing dumbbell squats can be very safe, in fact adding dumbbells to your squat can provide a great, fun new way for you to progress your body weight squats. Providing you with a good new stimulus to build muscle and progress in your fitness journey.
When and Why Should You Use Dumbbells?
Mastering the body weight squat is always the first goal in your squatting journey. Once you have perfected the squat and can perform a few sets with a good amount of reps, it is definitely time for you to spice it up a little bit. Start off small, grab the 5’s or 10’s put them in that front rack position and let the fun begin, surely soon enough you will see your squat gains start to pick back up again.
Types of Dumbbell Squat
When progressing the dumbbell squat, you should be able to get two 20lb dumbbells at your shoulders and be able to comfortably squat it for a few sets of 10. Then it will time to hit another mile stone, getting that 45lb barbell onto your back it may seem intimidating at first but you know that you can lift those 20lb dumbbells for a couple of reps so that 45lb barbell isn’t much heavier. Another great option the barbell back squat will be Split squats or walking lunges which will target each of those legs with a great amount of volume
Keep in mind though that without a proper trainer watching out for you, dumbbell squatting may pose a risk. This is because if you get tired, you can easily find difficulty in finding your balance, and you may also encounter some problems with lifting them in the first place. Nevertheless, if done properly, this type of exercise is generally safe, though it will be better with a spotter.
How To Do A Dumbbell Squat
To get started, stand with your feet at least shoulder width apart, making sure that you gravity and balance is in the middle, and that you’re standing very firm and steady.
Take a pair of dumbbells and hold them at your sides. Have your feet facing straight while also making sure that your toes are pointed at the front. Doing this decreases the pressure that can build up your knees while also keeping you centered.
Lock your back at a straight angle, then tighten your abdominal muscles. When doing this exercise, your quad muscles, glutes, and abdomen should do all of the work needed, and your back should stay rigid and in place.
Next, slowly bend your knees and go down to a squatting position. Slowly go down, and when you reach a 90-degree angle, stop.
Stand back up and repeat 10-12 times. Make sure you do it slowly and that your knees don’t lock up every time you go back into the first position.
Advanced Cues for the Dumbbell Squat
You can increase the exercise’s effectiveness by engaging your abs while doing it. Simply squeeze your butt while you are standing up.
Lock your back in one angle, and keep it there the entire time while exercising. During squats, you want the impact to be on your glutes, not on your back.
Keep your head up, and keep it there. According to research, looking down while squatting puts some unnecessary strain on your back because you lean forwards a little.
While starting, it may be best not to have any weights at all. Build up some strength, then slowly work your way up.
Never arch backwards – This is one of the most common mistakes that people do when doing dumbbell squats. However, this puts a lot of strain on your back, making it a very wrong posture. So make sure to avoid it all the time.
Distribute your load evenly – After finding the best posture and keeping it, make sure that your load is evenly distributed, so as not to pain any extra strain on your knees. If done consistently, this can often lead to serious injury.
Maintain a good posture all throughout – This is something that can’t be stressed enough. Maintaining a good posture ensures your back won’t be placed in risk of injury, and is also a great way to make sure that the parts of your body that should be doing the job are doing their job, like the quads and the hip flexors.
Benefits of the dumbbell squat
Increased core activity – Adding some weight to a simple exercise like squats up the intensity because not only are your glutes impacted, but your core muscles have to work harder to keep your balance too. In fact, due to this reason, squats with dumbbells work your abs better than most abdominal workouts.
Metabolic spike – This type of workout is capable of producing what is called as a metabolic spike, which is an after workout burning effect that essentially increases your metabolism for a number of hours after you already finished working. This helps your burn more calories.
Compound functional exercise – the squat is a compound exercise, meaning that while doing it, you are hitting different muscle groups and giving them a good workout too. It also helps burn more calories than isolated workouts, easily making the squat one of the best workouts you can do if you really want to tone your body.
Final Thoughts on the dumbbell Squat
So there you go, some tips and tricks on how to get the dumbbell squat right, and some reasons on why you should do it in the first place. Just remember that your legs are important, and that a toned one will not only look good, but will benefit you a lot, even as you age. So don’t ever neglect it, grab a pair of dumbbells, and start squatting today!