How does bilateral indifference affect squat performance?

Bilateral indifferences are imbalances between the left and right sides of the body, which are an important component in executing an effective and safe squat. Squatting is certainly one of the most commonly used movements in sports and daily life. Such examples include at home, when sitting on a couch, or at the gym when lifting weights. In either case, it’s important to maintain good posture and bilateral balance when doing so, to avoid any possible stress to the body.

Oftentimes, the execution of a squat is tilted. The reason behind this is the presence of a half-difference in which the body favors the right or left side over the other. We’ve carried out over 5,200 movement quality measurements that target bodyweight squats amongst other exercises. When a half difference more than 5° degrees exists, it is usually visible to the naked eye. Then the question is, what is the root cause of these imbalances?

Pinpoints areas of measurement that one can easily identify where half-differences or imbalances in the body can be found. If your client has a half-difference of more than 5° in any of these areas, it will be evident upon execution of exercise.

In the following video, the measurement of movement quality can be used to find out where these imbalances lie:

Do your physical trajectories align with those in the image above? If so, you’re likely to be able to perform a deep front squat at your fullest and functional capability!

One of the main tasks of sports coaches and personal trainers is to correct imbalances that lend to better performance and execution. The cleaner the execution, the less strain it puts on the body. When performed in coordination, movement and motion looks smooth and feels naturally relaxed.

The images above indicate a half-difference of approximately 10°, meaning incorrect trajectory is very clear. The latter images show exactly where the half-differences lie.

The deep front squat is one of the most effective and mobile exercises that requires stabilization and movement control. One of the biggest restrictions to performing the deep front squat correctly is due to a lack of mobility.

Correct execution of the deep front squat requires good mobility. When weight is included, the body tends to compensate for any active imbalances, resulting in poorer movement quality. The lifter shown in the picture has good mobility.

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