Can you do a full squat ?
Article by Adele Ang
Senior Sports and Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist
About the Author : Adele specialize in Sports and Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy. She also pursued the Polestar Pilates Method, which is a comprehensive method using Pilates as exercise therapy for rehabilitation of injuries
As a physiotherapist I teach people to assume a squat position for many reasons. Being Asian and raised in a culture where squatting toilets were the norm, most people had no problem assuming a full squat.
With the rise of sitting toilets, less and less people are able to squat fully, this is particularly true for relatively younger people. Surprising isn’t it? So sometimes you get to see a sprightly older lady make her way to the squatting cubicles while the younger ladies wait in line for the sitting ones. And guess who is going to have more problems with the hip, knee and ankle joints in future. Well, I can proudly say I am one of those ladies, though not older, who cuts to the front to use those empty squatting cubicles.
Benefits of a Full Squat
A full squat has its benefits, both in keeping the joints of your legs sufficiently flexible and the muscles moving those joints both stronger and longer, as they support the joints through their full range of movement. Lost of joint range of movement or joint mobility is a common reason for ongoing hip, knee and ankle pain in many adults, commonly but wrongly attributed to be a result of aging.
Assuming a full squat has also been touted as a valid solution for complete emptying of one’s bowels. A full squat requires you to have your thighs brought up to your chest which tightens your abdominal muscles, the position places a slack on your pelvic floor muscles which in turn relaxes the anal sphincter.
In addition, if you are experiencing recurring hip, knee or ankle injuries it is worth seeing if you can do a full squat and if not, learn to do it.
Here are 3 things you can do to assume a full squat and in doing so, keep your legs and bowels happy and healthy!