The squat is probably the most popular lift around the world. This extraordinary lift has the potential to help you make massive gains in strength and power. Although all of the latter is true, it is only true when good form and technique is practiced. Many complain that squatting puts strain on their knees and/or lower back. This will only occur when you are attempting more weight than you can handle, or your form is lift the bar .
In order to get the results you want from squatting, you must correct your form. Correct form starts as soon as you get under the bar. First, when you are unracking the weight, be sure that your back is straight, and your chest is out. What I like to say is, lock in your lower back. This lower back lock is going to remain throughout the lift.
Next you have to worry about your stance. Personally, I use a stance that is slightly wider than shoulder width apart. You do not want your feet too far apart or else you will put too much strain on your knees. So, with your back locked and your head looking straight ahead, you can begin your squat.
You want to squat down like you are sitting in a chair. You should keep the weight on the heels of your feet, and never come up on your toes. When you come up on your toes, which causes you to lean forward. The lean forward will result in a strained back. So, with the weight on your heels, you want to continue in your squat until you reach parallel with the ground. This is very important. If you do not reach parallel, you might as well not waste your time and energy attempting to squat. By going parallel on your squat, you are accessing the muscles that will give you the strength and power that you are looking for.
Now that you have reached parallel, you want to check on a few things. First, be sure that your knees are not flared out, and that they are perfectly in line with your feet. Also, remember to maintain that lower back lock that I mentioned earlier in the article.
On your way up out of the squat, maintain your lower back lock, and keep your chest pushed out. When coming up, push off of your heels, not your toes. After you get comfortable with squatting, you want to focus on exploding out of your parallel squat. This explosion will better improve your fast twitch muscles that are essential for power.