Deadlift Vs. Squat: Which Gives You a Better Workout?
The modern lifestyle and eating habits make our bodies very prone to overweight conditions such as obesity. To remain fit, we should engage in physical exercises such as running, deadlifts and squats. These forms of activities ensure that all the cholesterol in the body is adequately burned out. Deadlift and squats are two of the significant exercise practices aimed at strengthening the lower body muscles. Both have different variations of conducting them, but the primary principle is the same. It is crucial for anyone who intends to keep their lower body fit to understand the merits and demerits of these two exercising techniques. This will help one to determine which method is the most appropriate for his/her needs.
A squat is a form of exercise that primarily strengthens the buttocks, thighs, hips and the hamstrings. This is one of the most straightforward exercising technique as it can be performed without the use of any machines or weights. Squats are instrumental in keeping the body fit when done appropriately. Squats are one of the most commonly applied techniques in all kind of gyms. This is because of their ease of performing, and the results are fantastic. There are many variations of squats. The most common ones include back squat, lateral squat, front squat, goblet squat and hack squat. Most of these techniques involve the use of weights to improve the effectiveness. You can, however, perform squats without weights.
Basic steps for squats
- You begin in a standing position. You should stand upright while facing forward. Ensure that the area around your chest is straightly stretched out.
- The next step is positioning your legs in the appropriate position. You should spread your legs shoulder width apart or broader depending on how comfortable you are. The aim of spreading your legs is to lower your body’s center of gravity. This enables the body to support the upper trunk well during the exercise.
- Some people also prefer to bend the elbows or clasp the fingers together. This is crucial in ensuring that you maintain the same position of the body.
- While in this standing position, sit back slowly as if you are sitting on an imaginary chair. The slower you push downwards, the more the effectiveness of the technique. You should always keep your head forward as you sit back.
- Get as low as possible. You should strive to ensure that your thighs are as close and parallel to the floor as possible to ensure that your leg muscles are fully worked out. Make sure that all your upper body weight rests on your heels
- Once you get to the lowest possible position, rise slowly while pushing on your heels until you get to the beginning position
- Repeat the procedure for as many times as possible and set a new target always. With time, you will find yourself doing more and more squats, and your body will stay fit
Pros of squats
This technique has many advantages, and it is beneficial in shaping your body. Some of the significant merits of doing squats include:
- Squats can be done anywhere. This is because you do not require any particular equipment to perform them. Some people even prefer doing squats every morning in the bathroom before taking a shower.
- They make performing of real-life activities easier. Squats help to keep the body in position to perform the daily daytime activities. They help to improve the body balance and mobility making the body less prone to physical injuries such as torn hamstrings or groin injuries.
- They assist in the building of the entire body. Squats do build not only the lower body trunk muscles but also make the upper part fit. When the technique is done correctly, it is known to stimulate the massive production of testosterone. This hormone aids muscle growth and increases the muscle mass of other body parts.
- Helps in burning the excessive body fat. This is one of the best techniques to burn the body fat and maintain it at healthy levels. Squats help the body to form muscles and every muscle formed replaces a considerable amount of body fat.
- Aid waste removal. When you perform squats, you’ll sweat. Sweating is a means of expelling excessive salts and water from the body. Squats also significantly improve movement of feces as well as ensuring efficient bowel movements.
Cons of squats
- They are pretty simple to perform, and this makes them a little bit less efficient especially when done without weights. Using the wrong technique also makes the method ineffective.
- Overdoing squats can be harmful to your knees especially if you use more weight than your body can support.
This is also another exercising method that is aimed at strengthening the lower body muscles. This form of weightlifting enables one to lift more heavyweights than all the other kind of weightlifting. The deadlift is also easy to perform, but care should be taken to ensure that one doesn’t hurt himself/herself during the exercise. The technique has different variations, but they are all aimed at working the posterior hamstrings, the lower back, and the erector spine. Deadlifts are effective in keeping the central nervous system in good shape.
Basic steps for deadlift
The technique is called deadlift because the weight has to be in a dead position at the beginning of the exercise. This means that unlike other weightlifting techniques such as the squat and bench lifting where the weight is usually up, this process has to start with the load on the ground. The following are some of the significant steps that apply to conventional deadlift exercise:
- You begin by positioning yourself appropriately. This is the primary determinant of your ability to lift the weights. The legs should be spread wide preferably hip-width apart. You should not allow your shins to touch the bar while in this beginning position as you can injure yourself easily. Your toes should be positioned approximately 15 degrees apart to increase the area of contact of the legs with the floor
- Hold the bar. This means that you have to bend your back to be in a position to hold the bar. You should ensure that your legs remain in their original place. You should not turn the legs. If you feel some discomfort in the knees, it means that you are in the right position.
- After holding the bar, you should then bend your knees until the bar surface, and the shins are in contact. You should do this cautiously to ensure that the bar doesn’t slide off from your midfoot. If this happens, you have to repeat the whole procedure from the beginning
- The next step is ensuring that your back is straightened. You do this by raising your chest while maintaining your hips in the same position. You should also ensure that your shins are in contact with the bar during lifting
- The last step is pulling the weight upwards. Ensure that you have enough breath during this phase. The bar should be maintained in contact with the legs during this technique. You should also ensure that your back remains straight.
You should bring the weight back downwards slowly and avoid banging it on the ground. Repeat this technique for many times as possible for excellent results.
Pros of deadlifts
- The primary advantage of this technique is that you can lift heavier weights than any other lifting technique.
- The activity also helps to burn calories when done regularly. It is one of the most preferred techniques by individuals who plan to lose weight and regain proper body fitness.• The activity improves your body posture when performing normal daily activities. This is because it strengthens your back muscles as well as other body muscles. In fact, this technique works out more muscles than any other weightlifting exercise. This makes it more ideal for bodybuilders than squats that work out lesser body muscles.
- The technique also allows one to be fit for normal daily activities such as lifting water buckets or other objects.
- It is also one of the safest weightlifting practice. With deadlifts, you don’t have to worry about the weights falling backward like in back squats. If you feel that the pressure is unbearable, you can just drop it off, and you won’t suffer any physical body damage.
- The technique also improves gripping strength. The fingers are in close contact with the bar during this exercise. Therefore the grip strength of the fingers improves with continued deadlifting.
- This technique also enhances production of testosterone hormone. This hormone is responsible for muscle expansion. The body muscles also become more strengthened, and you are less likely to suffer from physical injuries.
Cons of deadlift
- It’s hard to progress if you begin with hefty weights.
Which technique is superior?
No technique is better than the other. It all depends on the intended purpose of the exercise. For instance, if you want to gain massive muscles especially for weightlifters, the deadlift is the best technique. This is because it allows you to lift any weight as without worrying about your safety. Squats, on the other hand, are the best for individuals who just want to stay fit. Deadlifts can also be used to keep fit.
Both of these techniques are crucial in muscle generation and burning of calories. It is therefore crucial that any individual strives to practice both. Body fitness is one way of staying free from diseases and muscle strains such as hamstring and groin injuries. Deadlifts and squats are without a doubt the best techniques for keeping your body fit.