Table of Contents
The squat is arguably one of the most beneficial exercises you can perform in the weight room. So often in conversation, the narrative around squats is geared solely toward aesthetic gains. However, squatting is a rudimentary part of human movement. Think about it: How often do we get up from a chair in one day? How often do we squat down to pick something up off of the ground? How often do we bend down to get in and out of the car?
The point is: we squat every single day, whether we are taking the time to be intentional with our form or not. If we want to live a life of quality well into our later years, we must squat properly and squat often. A proper squat not only strengthens our muscles, but it also fortifies the ligaments, tendons and bones. The result: longevity via movement.
If the functional benefits aren’t convincing enough to get us to the squat rack, maybe the hormonal benefits will be. Compound exercises such as the squat are great for increasing testosterone. Ratamess et al. found that post-exercise testosterone levels were significantly increased following 6 sets of 10 squats. This study is a reminder that we don’t need to max out every time we are in the gym in order to increase testosterone. Instead, focus on volume. Find a weight that would be considered moderate and crank out more than the typical 3 sets of 10 that you have been doing since high school. Above all else, do them correctly by paying attention to your form.
There is a lot more to a squat than just sitting down and standing up. If you don’t believe me, try these tips and see how much better your squat feels.
Master these squatting principles with bodyweight first, then start adding resistance. For beginners, my favorite way to add resistance is starting with the goblet squat. To perform a goblet squat: simply hold a dumbbell or kettlebell underneath your chin and follow the steps listed above.
A progression from the goblet squat is the barbell back squat. The basic principles of the squat remain the same. However, since you now have a barbell on your upper back, squeezing your shoulder blades together and pulling them down prior to un-racking the weight will be incredibly helpful. The back squat can seem like a risky movement at first but, as long as you follow the tips listed above and prioritize form over weight, you will be squatting safely.
So, if you are looking for a way to boost your testosterone and prepare your joints for a long life full of activity — learn to squat. Be mindful of how you squat every time you sit down and stand up. Create that healthy movement habit for yourself in life and in the gym.
NASM CPT, TRS
Masters in Exercise Science & Sports Psychology
Movement and Mobility Specialist
Crewther, B. T., Cook, C. J., Gaviglio, C. M., Kilduff, L. P., & Drawer, S. (2012). Baseline strength can influence the ability of salivary free testosterone to predict squat and sprinting performance. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research, 26(1), 261-268.
Ratamess NA, Kraemer WJ, Volek JS, et al. Androgen receptor content following heavy resistance exercise in men. J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol 2005 Jan; 93 (1): 35-42
Testosterone plays a significant role in the health and well-being of men. For crucial processes like sperm production, sex drive, and bone mass development, the body needs testosterone. But as you age, your testosterone levels start to decrease.
If you’re 50 or older, you may have low testosterone. It’s pretty common among men starting at 50 years old. Whether you know you’re experiencing low T or are looking for a way to increase your levels naturally, continue reading to learn the benefits of testosterone for men over 50.
Protein, the building block of our body. It’s essential for building and maintaining muscle tissue, strength, and overall good health. Foods like lean meats, fish, kale, nuts, and whole grains are great sources of protein and can be easily added to your diet. But how much protein does your body actually need?
It’s no secret that many experience muscle mass decline as they get older, but that doesn’t mean you have to accept it. With proper calculation, you can easily determine the amount of protein you need to repair and rebuild muscle tissue. Here are some ways to determine the amount of protein you should consume.
They say sore muscles are a sign that you’re doing it right at the gym. But let’s be honest, no one likes waking up to intensely sore muscles. Wondering if you can speed up muscle recovery, and what helps muscles recover faster?
While most muscle soreness resolves on its own after a few days, you probably won’t want to wait it out. Not only can it be uncomfortable, you likely want to get back to exercising. Let’s look at what causes soreness and how to speed up muscle recovery.
Comments will be approved before showing up.