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Benefits of Squatting: Front Squat or Back Squat

The benefits of squatting can’t be understated. Front squats and back squats have more in common than not; however, differences between the two movements make them more suitable for specific situations.

Regardless of the variation performed, squatting with a barbell has tremendous positive effects on our health and longevity. 

Let’s dive in! 

BENEFITS OF SQUATTING

It may seem evident that squatting can improve our lower-body strength and build muscle in our legs. Still, there are countless unseen physiological benefits that our bodies are getting without us even knowing.

Here are a few examples:

  • Increased bone density
  • Better flexibility
  • Injury prevention by strengthening ligaments and tendons
  • Naturally boosts hormone production
  • Improved posture
  • Burns fat

All of the above benefits are why we perform at least one squatting variation a week.

BACK SQUAT

Because the barbell rests on our back during the back squat, this variation will place a greater demand on our posterior chain. So, what is our posterior chain? Think of it as all the muscles on the backside of your body, specifically, your hamstrings, glutes, lower back, etc.

FRONT SQUAT

In the front squat, the barbell rests on the front of our shoulders, placing a greater demand on our anterior chain. So, what is our anterior chain? You guessed it! All the muscles on the front side of our body. 

While, yes, you will still be using your glutes and hamstrings in the front squat, the placement of the barbell makes the movement more quad dominant and increases the demand on our abs and obliques to keep us upright.

FRONT SQUAT OR BACK SQUAT?

The shorter answer is both!!! You can’t go wrong by performing at least one of these exercises each week. 

The longer answer would be that it depends on your goals and lifting experience. 

Back squatting may be more appropriate for someone with a range of motion limitation or is newer to working out.

Front squats are an excellent option for someone looking to change up a tired routine or train specifically to increase their Olympic lifts. 

If you’re still unsure which variation is best for you, schedule a No Sweat Intro with us, and we’ll help guide you along the best path for you! 

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