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The squat places tremendous load on lots of the muscles in your body, particularly in your legs. Outlined below is a detailed list of the muscles involved in the squat, along with a ranking system of 1-5 to rank how much the muscle is involved in the lift (1 is minimal involvement; 5 is super heavily involved).


The primary muscles used in any squat are your quadriceps and hamstrings. These are the two large muscle groups in your thigh. The four muscles that comprise the quadriceps, known more commonly as the quads, run along the front of the thigh. The hamstrings are the three muscles running along the back of your thigh.


Your upper-body muscles must also work very hard to hold and support the barbell on the front or back of your shoulders -- depending on whether you perform front or back squats. While squats are normally classed as a leg exercise, so many muscles are involved in a secondary capacity that squats are almost a whole-body exercise.


In strength training and fitness, the squat is a compound, full-body exercise that trains primarily the muscles of the thighs, hips and buttocks, quadriceps femoris muscle (vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, vastus intermedius and rectus femoris), hamstrings, as well as strengthening the bones, ligaments and insertion of the tendons throughout the lower body.


The squat is a multi-joint exercise that recruits multiple muscles in the lower body, making it one of the most frequently used exercises for strength and conditioning. Understanding the complex biomechanics and coordinated muscle actions involved in squatting can help you maximize your training ...


Muscles Worked – Back Squat. Below are the muscle groups involved with the back squat movement. Note, that the back squat is a very taxing and compound exercise, therefore many smaller and ...


Although the squat is a compound, multijoint exercise that strengthens the entire body, it principally works the hip, knee and ankle joints. Squats target the muscles that extend those joints, including the glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps and calves. You can perform this versatile exercise using just your body weight ...


The primary hip muscle involved during a squat are the gluteus maximus (view our all about the glutes blog here) and the hamstrings. Gluteus Maximus: works eccentrically** to control decent and concentrically** on ascent. Helps to stabilise during a squat to prevent abnormal movement of the pelvis and knee.


The front squat is by nature a more quadriceps dominant exercise than the back squat and requires more mid-line stabilization, and muscle activity in the hips, and spinal erectors. Both the back squat and the front squat develop strength and power in the low body but, there are differences in maximal muscular performance.


The muscles lengthen and act as brakes to slow the rate of movement and protect the body against injury. Related: What Eccentric and Concentric Movements Are in a Squat? Concentric vs Eccentric: Muscles Involved in Squats Downward Phase Muscle Actions. During the downward phase of a squat, gravity is a powerful downward force.