It is always a good idea to incorporate strength training into your fitness routine. I have incorporated squat thrusts into my fitness routine for a couple of months now. I can say that Squat thrusters are an effective way to build strength and endurance.
A squat thruster is an exercise that can help you build strength, improve your cardiovascular endurance, and more. This type of exercise typically uses weights such as dumbbells, kettlebells, or barbells.
If you are unsure of what a squat thruster is, this article will talk about the squat thrust, how to do it correctly, and how it can benefit you. We will also talk about some of the squat thrust variations so make sure to read until the end!
What Is A Squat Thruster?
A squat thruster, or squat thrust, is a type of exercise that can work not just your lower body but the upper body as well. This exercise involves the use of weights such as dumbbells, kettlebells, or a barbell.
Squat thrusts are a great exercise to add to your fitness routine if you want to build strength and endurance, as well as tone your body. Aside from building your strength, doing squat thrusters can improve hip mobility, increase your heart rate and metabolic rate, and improve your cardiovascular endurance. If you are not experiencing any pain in your knees or shoulders, you will be able to do this exercise.
What Muscles Do Squat Thrusts Work?
Squat thrusters are great if you want the benefit of both an upper and lower body exercise. This exercise will primarily work your quads, glutes, and hamstrings because of the squatting motion. However, since squat thrusters incorporate an overhead press as you come out of the squat, you will also be working your shoulders and arms. The pecs and triceps, as well as the core muscles, will be working as you perform squat thrusters.
Benefits Of Squat Thrusters
Squat thrusters are a highly effective exercise that offers a lot of benefits whether you are a beginner or an advanced fitness enthusiast. This exercise engages multiple muscle groups at the same time which makes it a great addition to your workout routine.
As we said earlier, doing squat thrusts can target and strengthen several upper and lower body muscles. The primary muscles worked during this exercise include the quads, glutes, and hamstrings. However, the shoulders, triceps, core muscles, and even the calves are targeted as well.
Another advantage of incorporating squat thrusters into your fitness routine is its versatility. Squat thrusters can be included in your weight training routine as they can be performed with various equipment such as dumbbells, kettlebells, or a barbell. This allows you to progress the load as you gain more strength.
You can also modify the squat thrust depending on your fitness level. If you are just starting out, you can opt to use smaller dumbbells that are less than 5 lbs. or a barbell without weights. This is great if you are not ready for heavier loads and want to build more arm strength.
How To Do A Squat Thruster
While anyone without knee or shoulder pain can perform this exercise, it is important to do squat thrusters with the proper form to avoid injuries.
While we can suggest the general way to do an exercise, you should have a trained professional show you how and monitor your form – at least for the first time doing a new exercise.
There are different variations of a squat thrust. In this guide, we will be going over how to do a squat thrust with dumbbells.
You will be needing a pair of dumbbells in your preferred weight. If you do not have dumbbells, you can fill two water bottles and use them as weights.
To do a squat thruster:
- Hold the dumbbells in each hand. For the starting position, stand tall with your feet shoulder-width apart and bend your elbows so that the dumbbells are at shoulder height. Make sure to keep your chest lifted and spine straight. Your palms should be facing each other.
- Lower into a squat position by bending your knees. Engage your core and glute muscles and press your feet flat to the floor as you do your squat. Make sure to keep your torso upright and your elbows high while keeping the dumbbells at shoulder height.
- Still pressing your feet firmly to the ground, thrust back up to a standing position. Then extend your arms in an overhead press rotating your palms to face the wall in front of you. Make sure to keep your ribcage in and your spine straight as you do an overhead press.
- Squat back down while lowering the dumbbells back to shoulder level. Rotate the palms so they are facing each other again.
- 5. Repeat as many reps as you need.
Common Mistakes When Doing A Squat Thrust
Arching your back is a common mistake when doing a squat thrust. This can mean that you are not keeping your core engaged the whole time. An arched back during squat thrusts put a lot of pressure on your lower back. This is because the lower back compensates for the lack of engagement in the core muscles. If you don’t engage your core, you will also be unstable during the exercise.
Another common mistake that goes together with arching your back is keeping your ribs flare as you thrust up. When the ribs are flared out, the tendency is for the back to arch so make sure you are engaging your core and keep a neutral spine.
Arching your back can also mean that the weights you are using are too heavy for your current fitness level. If this is the case, start with a lower weight load and gradually increase it as you gain more strength.
Another common mistake is not giving explosive power as you thrust into the overhead press. This may be because you are rushing to get into the overhead press. You have to think of really pressing into the floor and giving enough force to lift the weight off your shoulders.
You also want your thighs to be as parallel to the floor as possible to be able to give you that power to thrust up into the overhead press. If you do not have that range of motion, do the squat thrusters with the correct form and squat as deep as you can without lifting your heels off of the floor.
Squat Thruster Variations
As we said earlier, there are several variations of squat thrusters. These all have the same movements except for the weights used.
A kettlebell squat thrust uses kettlebells instead of dumbbells. You can use one or two kettlebells for this one. A barbell squat thrust uses a barbell. This variation can be harder, especially if you are using heavier weights. A single-arm squat thrust uses one dumbbell or kettlebell while the other arm is straight out to the side or in front of you to give you a better balance. Doing single-arm thrusters are hard as it requires good core stability to keep you stable.
Some people also do the variation of a squat thrust (without weights) where you squat with both hands on the floor, shoot the legs out to a push-up position, return to a squat, and stand up or jump up. Some people may confuse this with a burpee but, a burpee has a push-up incorporated after you shoot out to a plank position.
All these variations are great if you are looking for a total body workout and strength training.
A squat thruster is effective in building strength and endurance. It not only works the lower body but the upper body as well since it incorporates an overhead press.
If you have other questions, let us know how we can help you!