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5 Health Benefits of Doing Squats Everyday

health benefits of doing squats everyday

Squat mastery is an important strength and longevity tool. As we age we lose our flexibility and mobility creating a cascading effect of physical decline in our lives. By squatting everyday using proper squat form a beginner trainee can reverse the effects of this natural decline by building muscle mass for overall strength and power.  There are many benefits to incorporating squats into a daily training effort. Use the jumplinks below for my top 5 Health Benefits of Doing Squats Everyday and squat instruction:.

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1. Create a More Functional Body for Everyday Life

benefits of strength training

The squat strengthens the coordination of both the upper and lower body in one exercise.  Getting stronger at this key functional exercise aids the trainee in being able to better perform everyday activities. When the overall guidewire system is improved it combats the negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle which contribute to poor posture, chronic fatigue, increased blood pressure, weight gain and a slower metabolism.

2. Amp the Body's Fat Burning Ability

mitochondrial density

By building functional muscle the body increases mitochondrial density. The mitochondria are tiny cellular blast furnaces.  Increasing mitochondrial density amps up the metabolism. Every extra pound of muscle gained will burn an additional 50-70 calories.  If you gain 10 pounds of muscle, then your metabolism will burn an additional 500-700 calories per day. That additional muscle will also help in the regulation of glucose and lipid metabolism as well insulin sensitivity protecting against obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. This aids in toning and tightening your body from your abs to your butt to your legs.

3. Improve Mobility and Balance

“For every inch of Forward Head Posture, it can increase the weight of the head on the spine by an additional 10 pounds.”   -Kapandji, Physiology of Joints, Vol. 3

A properly performed squat not only strengthens the legs it strengthens the muscle slings of the core that are critical to maintaining an upright posture and good balance. Hip and ankle mobility are also improved when using a full range of motion. Sitting for extended periods of time contributes to a degradation of overall posture and functionality. The result is a head forward position and deactivated hip flexors. For more information on Forward Head Posture see Dr. Erik Dalton's site. Lastly there is an improved cognitive awareness of the body overall. 

4. Prevent Injuries

Performing a squat over a full range-of-motion with a slow controlled speed allows the trainee to eliminate gaps of weakness. This technique strengthens the ligaments and tendons making muscle insertion points far more resistant to tearing.  This can dramatically reduce the chance of injury in everyday life.

5. Boost Sports Performance

Squats are the “King” of all progressive resistance exercises. When performed correctly with the requisite amount of intensity this one exercise gives a trainee great gains in strength overall. There are five bio-motor attributes that aid in better sports performance – strength, speed, endurance, agility and flexibility.  Speed and agility are directly improved when strength capacities are increased.

How to Do Squats Properly

Proper squat form is essential for reaping the immense benefits from this one compound multi-joint movement. A baby intuitively understands how to squat perfectly.

5 health benefits of doing squats everyday

The technical premise is to make squatting “all about legs.” Learn how to do a technically perfect ultra-deep bodyweight squat first then work through the subsequent variations of goblet squat, front squat and high bar/low bar barbell squat.

Below are the key technical points that apply to all squat variations and instructive video.

squat key technical points

When learning to squat it is important to first learn how to perform a technically correct ultra-deep no weight squat.  Life causes us to lose this innate ability; our strategy is to "relearn" and recapture lost "primordial wisdom." The goal is to perform full ROM bodyweight squats using pristine technique.

proper squat form

Crawl before you walk and walk before you run – how can anyone be expected to perform a perfect barbell squat if they are unable to perform a perfect squat with bodyweight alone? Check out the picture above and note knees over ankles, vertical shins, upright torso; pelvis is tucked under. This is our core technique, our foundational position for all subsequent squats. Using a support is a great way to start squatting and accomplish the key technical points stated above.  See the video below of proper squat form using the CrossCore suspension trainer​.

See 74 year old Dawn squatting using a suspension trainer called CrossCore using pristine form. This suspension trainer is superior to others on the market because of its patented pulley pin engagement system. When the pin is removed a greater level of instability is created, forcing the body into dynamic stabilization.

Dynamic stabilization occurs when abdominals, spinal extensors and gluteal muscles work in coordination with each other and intra-abdominal pressure is regulated by the central nervous system. 

stabilization

Dawn Massey above is a mother of 4 and grandmother of 7. Her flexibility and mobility have soared through consistent, focused daily practice. She can pull a 72lb kettlebell for 8 reps and can squat a 35lb kettlebell for 8 reps.

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After mastering the bodyweight squat the challenge becomes – how do we increase the squat payload while retaining the optimal squat technique we worked so hard to attain in our bodyweight squatting? A kettlebell or dumbbell can be held under the chin, or a barbell plate clutched to the chest to create additional squat payload. With the introduction of these payload-enhancing tools, great care needs to be taken to not allow the archetypical squat technique (ingrained in no-weight squats) to be corrupted, degraded or compromised. A technique we use to make this transition is to push the implement out in front of the body while lowering.  Eventually the low position becomes more comfortable and the trainee can hold the implement close to the body. Goblet squatting allows us to dramatically increase squat resistance by grasping these external payloads.

Take 15 minutes to incorporate squats into your daily routine. I recommend starting off with 2 sets of 10-12 reps daily to ingrain a new neuromuscular pathway. As your strength and mobility improve vitality increases. My clients find that tasks that seemed overwhelming or unattainable all of a sudden become easier to perform. The body finds a new synergy that allows it to overcome and improve overall movement. 

Take your squat and your training to the next level!

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28 Comments

  1. Fred

    Great article Stacy, This is right, the older we get, the more sitting we do. your article has touched, right on the subject. Staying active and exercising our bodies, as we get older, will improve life expectancy.

  2. Erin

    Love your post and blog. Thanks so much for sharing. It’s the little things, sometimes that go a long way, isn’t it? I see some more squats in my future, so thanks for the good reminder.

  3. Nathan

    Who doesn’t want to live longer? With New Years around the corner I have made my goal to focus a little more on myself by getting back into shape. With a 1 year old in the house I have fell off the fitness wagon for the past year and now it’s time to hop back on. I have never really considered squats but after reading with my should include them into my workouts. Super informative post thanks!!!

    • Stacy Gallagher

      Thanks Nathan! Daily squats is a great way to reconnect with the body. I wish you luck in the new year with your fitness goals. Doing a little something everyday can breed enthusiasm for future efforts.

  4. Kevin

    I like to do squats. People in the gym think that I’m crazy but the truth is every time I have to train legs, I do Squats. At the end of the exercise I swear I feel like I really worked out like I have to.

    Now, I have a question for you. My partner do not like to work out, and it worries me because she gets sick frequently.

    She also complains that her but is not in a great shape… I have tried to tell her to do a squat challenge or something.

    One of the things I’ll do is show her your article, but I want to know if you can help me out by showing me a squat challenge for beginners that keep people motivated?

    Thank you and I hope you have a fantastic day.

    • Stacy Gallagher

      I appreciate the read.  I often start beginner squatters with 1-2 sets of 10 reps every day to help ingrain good form.  Folks have lost connection with their bodies and I find that this is a good start without overwhelming them.  Also it helps to establish a better mind-muscle connection over time.  This generally submaximal approach sneaks up on progress incrementally.  I cannot emphasize enough the good form is the key to reaping benefits from squats.  If your partner is really interested in giving daily squats a try, please feel free to have her contact me at stacygallagher@functional-strength.org with any questions.  

  5. sharon

    Hi,
    I have just recently started exercising and squats are my pet hate, but i have to do them to strengthen my muscles as i have had partial knee replacements.
    The good thing that you have shown is how to do them properly, so i have some encouragment there.
    In order to not overdue squats how many would you suggest i do a week ?as i wouldnt want to cause any damage.
    The 72 year old lady looks pretty fit , good on her,
    Thanks for the info.

    • Stacy Gallagher

      The assisted squats I illustrated are the best way to start then you can take your time to feel the movement and not force things.  The act of the knees going wide activates the hip joint which is a rotational joint where the knee is not.  Also play with your foot stance.  The wider the feet go the easier it is to access the hip.  I would start with one session of 10 reps a day.  Treat each rep as a stand alone while you learn the movement and find your balance within the movement.  As you get stronger and more coordinated the flow of the exercise will come.  My friend Dawn (72 year old) has been working with me for 3 years.  We slowly worked on her hip flexibility to get her to what you saw in the video.  She will tell anyone who will listen that these kind of squats fixed her chronic knee pain.  Please feel free to contact me at somg@embarqmail.com should you have any additional questions or concerns.

  6. Alejandra

    This is a great article that will help me to keep on my exercise plan, Dawn looks great, my goal is to be healthier as I’m getting older, so this article is a great motivation for me.

    • Stacy Gallagher

      Thank you for the read! Dawn developed that great squat style over the period of 2 years. She was so clumsy at first. Now she craves the movement to open up her body. Good luck on your fitness journey!

  7. sarah

    Wow, this is such a useful article, I usually am very active in my lifestyle but I never knew before that squats are really very beneficial Especially everyday. I love the way you have explained everything along with pictures and anatomy. Thank you so much for sharing such a useful read.

    • Stacy Gallagher

      Thank you for your comment! Doing a set of squats everyday as part of a morning mobility regimen can have great long-term effects throughout the whole day. You might also want to consider a walking regimen that incorporates variety of terrain for better conditioning.

      Good Luck,
      Stacy

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  9. Anthony Jongepier

    Hello, Stacy.

    Wonderful article about squatting. Very enjoyable read. And it’s nice to see the progress that your client Dawn has made.

    I am a huge fan of your husband and the lifters that he has coached. I have purchased two copies of Purposeful Primitive (one for myself and one for my brother), a copy of Strong Medicine, and a copy of Crosscore Hardcore, I have watched nearly all of the Iron Company interviews, as well as the Youtube videos of the young guy that he is coaching demonstrating the different lifts, and I have read many of his articles. I still have some questions regarding a few of the lifts, most of all the squat and the Deadlift. Would it be alright to email you about it?

    Thank you.

  10. Jessie

    Thank you for the awesome post!  I do a lot of MMA and cardio style workouts. I specifically focus on Muay Thai workouts because they are so intense due to the emphasis on leg workouts.  I don’t do squats on their own.  Do you think they are still effective when in conjunction with the Burpee workout?

    • Stacy Gallagher

      Very cool!  The squats should help aid in the burpee workout.  The emphasis on the upright posture and full range of motion will build a stronger core.  I would specifically direct you to the videos at the end of the post.  The idea of pulling yourself down using your lats and working towards going below parallel while maintaining tension will give you an improved coiled power for punches and kicks.  Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

  11. KingAndrea

    My trainer always says to me to never miss a leg day.  Your article gives great justification for this advice.  Squats have helped me in adjusting and strengthening my hips.  I have also been able to build some muscle around my thighs which has helped me carry my body more easily. I really like your videos at the end of the post that give good visual cues.

  12. Wildecoll

    Doing squats everyday has an immense benefit to human health.  As the population has become more sedentary, spending more than half of their day sitting, human health has declined.  The result is a population that suffers from whole host of issues from bad knees to hips to spines. I am looking forward to taking what I have learned from this article and incorporating it into my daily regimen.

  13. Paolo

    I appreciate the benefits of daily squatting that you listed in your post.  I knew that this exercise was beneficial to create a more functional body for everyday life, but had not considered the fat burning ability of building new muscle. I had not realized that babies are adept at proper squat form intuitively.  I am definitely going to work on performing an ultra-deep no weight squat using the cues from your post.  Thank you very much for an informative and educational post!

  14. Parveen

    I enjoyed your article and found it very useful. As a beginner trainee I had not considered the idea of doing squats everyday until I came across your post.  I really need to build a more functional body.  The videos at the beginning of the post were quite helpful.  I like the idea of being able to jump to the exercise description from the video.  I am looking to incorporate this strategy into my everyday life to reap the rewards of this exercise.  Thanks for sharing this information.

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