While doing a private session the other day with my client, he told me that before starting CrossFit he was always told that when he squatted he only had to reach parallel in order for the rep to be complete. I had to change his mechanics and mindset a little as to why we squat below parallel. I found an awesome article from Barbell Shrugged about this topic. I feel that there is a lot of misconception out there about how squatting below parallel is bad for your knees, and I agree if you are doing it incorrectly.
“A recent study found that shallow squats (about 60° knee angle) improved lower-body strength and vertical jump performance, but deep squats (below 90° knee angle) were MORE effective, promoting greater muscle mass and strength development (Reference 1).
That’s an important lesson for athletes to consider – You might be able to lift more right now by cutting your squat depth, but science suggests that you’ll be less muscular and strong overall.”
When to scale? It would be ideal if everyone could squat below parallel but there are some cases where this isn’t and shouldn’t be executed. If you are injured, you may cause more damage and if you have poor ankle mobility. Or if there are other poor habits that make the movement not safe to squat deep, when in doubt use a box.
Workout of the Day:
10 – 1
Burpee box jump over
10 jumping air squats
10 push ups
(1) 20m shuttle run
decreasing air squats and push ups by 1 and increasing shuttle runs each round