Squat Depth: How Low Should You Go?

There’s lots of discussion and controversy among fitness trainers and strength coaches about squat depth: how low you should go?

In this video I discuss the Performance U approach to finding the right squat depth for each individual, and discuss the different approach we take to squatting for mobility purposes vs. squatting for strength and muscle building purposes.

With the information provided in the above video in mind; as I said in my book Strength Training for Fat Loss:

“The general rule of joints is that they’re designed to primarily function in their mid-ranges of motion, but they also need some full range-of-motion activity in order to stay healthy and maintain their current range of motion. And, as the saying goes, ‘If you don’t use it, you lose it.’

Strength training exercises usually avoid end-range joint actions, which is the safest way to lift heavy loads. That said, doing unloaded mobility work or attending a yoga class one or more times per week can serve as a nice complement to your strength training workouts. Because of its low-load, slow-paced nature, many yoga moves and mobility drills require your joints to move into their end-range of motion, moving them in a manner that you don’t get from weight training, which can help to ensure better joint health, provide more variety of activity, and give you a more well-rounded body that’s not just strong and lean but also mobile.”

Additionally, from a mobility squat standpoint, in my Squat like an Adult, Not like a Baby article, I provide you with the various reasons for why the Performance U training approach doesn’t involve jumping on the “squat like a baby” bandwagon, and feel it’s not only potentially dangerous to take a one size fits all approach to squatting, it’s also ignorant of the obvious physiological differences between adults and babies that it’s an insult to the intelligence of the professional training and conditioning field.”

Lastly, there are many other aspects to discuss when it comes to squatting, such as load placement (e.g., front squat vs. back squat, high bar vs. low bar back squat, etc.) and individual variation of movement, which are beyond the scope of the video above and this post. The purpose of the video proved here is to focus on one specific point about squatting, and one point only, which is the fact that, in the Performance U approach to training, the squat depth used differs between (what we’d call) a “mobility squat” (where the emphasis on maximal range of motion) and a “strength squat” (where the emphasis is on maximal control of spinal postion while under an external load).

Upcoming Live Events

In Del Ray Beach, FL on August 22nd, 2014  teaching at ECA Thrive

In Montreal, CAN on September 20th, 2014 teaching at MOVE with Brad Schoenfeld

In Washington DC, on October 2-4th, 2014 teaching at the NSCA Personal Trainers Conference

In San Francisco, CA on October 18-19th, 2014 teaching at the Nor-Cal Fitness Summit

Learn How To Program Like A Pro

Using My Must-Have Programming Charts

Learn how I how I quickly and easily create programs that get results and keep clients coming back for more by downloading my 2 must-have programming charts and watching the included video lesson.

With these two charts, you’ll be able to combine the most important functional movements with isolation exercises for the perfect balance of strength, hypertrophy and performance.

In this video lesson you’ll discover:

And much more!

If your goal is to write better programs for your clients and save time while doing so, then you’ll want to sign up for this free lesson!