Monday, November 29, 2010

Exercise Of The Week; Smith Machine Squats

A properly executed squat is one of the best exercises you can do for overall strength and conditioning. Using the Smith Machine is a big aid in helping you to perform squats correctly. First, place the bar a little lower than shoulder height. Next, position yourself under the bar, twist to unlock it and place the bar on top of your shoulders. Now, place your feet about six inches in front of you shoulder width apart. This is your start position. Lift your chest and keep your chin high. Now, squat by leading with your butt until your thighs are parallel to the floor and then return to the start position. Be careful not to round your lower back, and that your knees do not extend over your toes at anytime doing this exercise. (For the first few times it’s best to have someone observe you from the side to make sure you are doing this exercise correctly). Your breathing pattern is to inhale on the way down and exhale on the way up on this exercise.

Combine this exercise with the leg press, step-ups, and roll-ups for a terrific lower body routine. I recommend beginners do 2 sets of 10 repetitions of each exercise, and those more experienced do 3 sets of 12 repetitions each exercise.

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