If you’re looking for a way to build muscle and lose fat, then tempo squats is your exercise. In addition, this exercise is perfect for working your lower body. The idea behind this exercise is to perform the squats slowly and gradually over time, which helps you burn fat and build muscle faster.
Before we look at the steps for this exercise, let’s understand what tempo squats are.
A tempo squat is a type of squat that is performed at a slow, steady pace. It’s usually used in powerlifting and weightlifting training.
The tempo of a squat is the speed at which you lower and raise yourself during a set. This means the squats use a time frame for you to control the movement. This exercise has three phases; eccentric (down), isometric, and concentric (up).
In simple words, tempo squats are performed like a normal squat, but you time your movement (in seconds).
HOW TO DO TEMPO SQUATS PROPERLY
- Load weight on the barbell depending on your fitness level (the lighter you start with, the better)
- Position the barbell on your shoulder and straighten it to release the weight from the rack.
- Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and brace your core. Push your chest up, hips back, and glutes tight.
When assuming a 3-0-1 reading
- Move downwards slowly for three seconds.
- For this rep, there is no pause as it is 0 seconds; therefore, once you get to the squatting position, start the upward movement and do it in one second. This counts as one rep.
When assuming a 3-0-3 reading
- Lower down in a controlled motion, count 3 seconds, then finish the squat.
- There’s no pause at the bottom of the movement since the reading is zero.
- Start the upward move and do it in three seconds, then stand.
When assuming a 3-1-0 reading
- Go down to a count of 3 seconds
- Pause for a second at the bottom of the movement
- Fire up into a standing position.
These are just some examples; you can set your timing as long as you control your movements to increase time under tension.
WHAT MUSCLES DO TEMPO SQUATS WORK?
This exercise targets muscles of the upper and lower body. The lower body muscles include the quadriceps, adductor, hip flexors, calves, glutes, and hamstrings. The upper body muscles include lats, spinal erectors, core, and upper back.
This is an excellent exercise if you’re looking to tone your thighs and butt.
TEMPO SQUATS BENEFITS
BETTER BODY AWARENESS
Tempo squats are great for improving body awareness. They help point out any weaknesses in the body when one focuses on slowing down the movement.
They also force you to pay attention to your form and target areas while engaging in intense cardiovascular activity. When combined, these two factors make this exercise an excellent way to improve overall fitness.
INCREASED MUSCLE MASS
Tempo squats will also help increase muscle mass because they require slow reps that allow for complete muscle recruitment throughout every part of the lift.
This means that more fibers are being recruited by each rep than would otherwise be possible if done faster or with less intensity.
BETTER MOVEMENT TECHNIQUES
Tempo squats are a great way to work on your squat technique. This is because they allow you to focus on the proper form of the squat while still getting a good workout.
They also help improve your balance and coordination as you perform this exercise. This can help to reduce the chances of injury when doing other exercises that use similar motions, such as deadlifts or lunges.
INCREASES TIME UNDER TENSION
Tempo squats are an effective way to increase time under tension, which is just a fancy way of saying that it makes your muscles work harder for longer.
This is because when you do tempo squats, you’re really focusing on making sure every single rep is perfect. You’re not just trying to get through your workout as quickly as possible—you’re trying to do everything right. This means taking your time with each move and making sure you get the most out of each one.
INCREASES MUSCULAR ENDURANCE AND STAMINA
This workout focuses on controlled movements, which increase muscle time under tension. Improved endurance and stamina help you lift more weight or perform more reps with less rest between sets, which will help you see results faster.
ALTERNATIVES TO TEMPO SQUATS
Back squats mainly work your lower back, glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves to a lesser extent. It’s like the traditional squat with an addition of a barbell to strengthen the shoulders. If the movement control on the temp squat exercise, then back squat will be an excellent alternative.
- Load your desired weight.
- Position the bar across your shoulders with your hands relatively close.
- Keep your chest up, brace your core, and push your hips back. Also, ensure to tighten your glutes throughout the up and down movements.
- Inhale, and then bend your knees to drop to a bottom squat position.
- Exhale and push back to the starting position.
- This counts as one rep. Repeat depending on your fitness level.
TEMPO SQUATS MISTAKES TO AVOID
This is caused by improper breathing and may lead to one not being able to gather enough energy to lift the weight. The weakness poses a possible back injury and shaky legs. Ensure you inhale when starting the down movement, and exhale when starting the upward movement.
AVOID USING TOO MUCH WEIGHT
Tempo squats are meant to be done with a lightweight so that you can focus on the movement itself, not on how much weight you’re lifting. If you’ve never done them before, start with light weight, but then, only do the squats for a few weeks before moving on to heavier weights.
NOT SQUATTING TO DEPTH
It’s crucial to get the right depth. Several factors can contribute to this, including inadequate ankle and hip movement and lack of strength.
Squatting to depth is one of the essential elements of a proper tempo squats. It’s also one of the most difficult to master, as it requires a lot of flexibility and coordination.
To squat correctly during this exercise, keep your knees at or slightly above your hip crease. If you cannot do this, you may need to work on your flexibility with some stretches or exercises like wall sits or lunges.
ROUNDING YOUR BACK
Rounding your back affects the spine and may cause disc and back issues, increasing tightness. To have a proper form during the tempo squats exercise, keep your back neutral, and push your hips back and core engaged.