A new way to squat that will shape and define your lower body and strengthen your muscles up the line from your legs to your shoulders; ideal for outdoor walking and running and a great variation from the traditional squat.
Starting Position: Stand tall with your feet together and one 5-7 lb. dumbbell grasped in your hands; interlace your fingers to brace the dumbbell in front of your ribcage. Pull your abdominals in and squeeze your buttocks.
Action: Bend your knees and push your hips back as you simultaneously push the dumbbell straight out in front of you. This will help you counterbalance so that you can squat lower (while keeping your knees together). Lower your hips until your thighs are almost parallel with the ground; pause as you exhale; pull in your abdominals to support your lower back and keep your chest lifted. As you inhale, push up to a standing position; squeeze your shoulder blades and buttocks as you pull the dumbbell in by bringing the elbows back.
For a greater challenge, lower into the squat, hold for 5 counts and then return to standing. Repeat 3 sets of 10 repetitions.
Provided by Maureen Hagan – BScPT, BA, PE, VP Operations – GoodLife Fitness