Squat pulses workout is a variation of the squat that can help you grow your lower body muscles, improve your balance and gain better stability.
You probably already know that a complete workout targeting a specific group of muscles does not need one specific workout but more variations of the same workout. When you employ different variations of a given workout, you iron out the weaknesses of the main workout while adding to its strengths.
Squat pulses involve taking the appropriate stance, stretching your arms forwards then descending into a full squat. On the crouch position, swing with pulses- as in making short jerks up and down.
The muscles that are get activated are the quadriceps, glutes, hamstring, calves, hip flexors, calf muscles, core muscles, abductors, and adductors.
This article will discuss how to perform squat pulses, the variations, benefits, and the mistakes to avoid when doing squat pulses.
- Stand straight with your feet at a stance equal to your shoulder width. Drawback your shoulders, and keep your chin and chest up to make your back straight. Stretch your hands straight in front of you.
- Push back your hips and engage your core muscles to descend into a full squat.
- At the crouch position, initiate the upward squat by pressing your feet down and engaging your core. Just before you get to where knees are exactly parallel to the floor- half squat, descend down again. Swing in between the bottom of the squat and the half squat in pulses.
- Swing continuously and get back to the initial position.
These are the four muscles located in your front thigh. They are vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, vastus intermedialis, and rectus femoris. The most activated is the vastus medialis while the least activated is rectus femoris. The quads are the main muscles worked during pulse movement.
The hamstring are the muscles are located behind your thighs. They assist to extend the knee and to flex the knees.
In the workout, the hamstrings are mostly activated during the pulses.
The glutes or butt muscles mainly help in the extension of your hips.
Your glute muscles are involved and therefore activated from the time you descend to the time you complete the move.
This is because your hips are extended all through the workout and it also helps to resist your body weight.
Your core includes all the muscles that help to stabilize the spine. Since the workout requires stability under motion, the core muscles chip in to keep you balanced.
BENEFITS OF SQUAT PULSES
Squat pulses keeps your muscles in continuous tension which pushes the muscles to extreme limits thereby increasing their speed of their growth.
Pulsing at the bottom half of the squat gets your core engaged so much.
Together with other stabilizing muscles, the core muscles are forced to keep you stable when swinging.
Maintaining the pulses helps strengthen your core thereby resulting to an improved balance and stability.
One of the factors that enhances the strength of your muscles is the muscle tension and the range of motion.
Although the range of motion of the squat pulses is short, but it is continuous. The continuous motion generates accumulated tension that strengthens your muscles.
NO EQUIPMENT NEEDED
Squat pulses require no equipment to perform. It is one of those workouts that will give you a run for your energy and effort even when you don’t make an appearance at the gym.
Since no equipment is needed and the range of motion is a short one, squat pulses will be easy on your knee joint.
Usually when you put up your knee joint under constant resistance of heavyweights over a long range of motion, the joint becomes weak and painful.
VARIATIONS OF SQUAT PULSES
In case you don’t find squat pulses as effective as you thought, here are some alternative exercises that you can try out.
The lunge pulse workout activates mainly the quads and the core muscles.
To do the lunge pulse, take one stride ahead and squat down until your front knee and rear knee are at 90 degrees.
From that position, start swinging up and down. You can take it a notch higher by holding a pair of dumbbells.
GOBLET SQUATS PULSES
If you have mastered squat pulses, you should put yourself up to a higher challenge.
Goblet squat pulses involve holding weights like kettlebells and then pulsing with them. This workout will put more emphasis on your glutes, quads, and hamstrings.
BULGARIAN SPLIT SQUAT
The Bulgarian split squat is better known as the rear foot elevated split squat.
This workout puts your balance and your hip mobility to test because most of your weight is inclined on a single leg.
To do it, stand in front of a bench, lift one leg and have it inclined to the bench. Take the appropriate stance depending on the level of challenge that you want.
A wider stance puts you up to a higher challenge. Squat down and swing around at the level where your knee is parallel to the ground.
SQUAT PULSES +FULL SQUAT
This variation brings out another dimension of challenge to the squat pulses by increasing the intensity of muscle tension and the range of motion.
It involves squatting to your knee level and taking one or two pulses then the doing a full squat.
MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN DOING SQUAT PULSES
- The purpose of squat pulses is to put your muscles under considerable tension. A common mistake that trainees often do is to release up the tension soon as the burning sensation kicks in. You should not squat back up soon as you feel the burning sensation but try to increase the time under tension when it kicks in.
- When pulsing up and down, your knees should not collapse inwards but they are supposed to stay firm throughout the exercise.
- Another mistake is failing to engage your core during the workout.
- If you do squat pulses with the
- wrong posture, it may do more harm than good. Here are some of the wrong postures that you should avoid.
- Having your back curved or rounded
- Having sagging chin
- Taking a very small stance which is unstable
- Curving your knees inwards
- Squatting with your knees pointed