These are the 4 squat variations I think nearly everyone can benefit from. Here’s a breakdown of each of them:👇
Back Squat: The “king of lower body exercises” is a great way to get a stronger and bigger legs. It can be tricky to learn proper form but it’s key to do so. The back squat is good specifically for glute and quadriceps activation.
Box Squat: This movement usually allows you to use more weight than a typical back squat and is also more hip dominant. This makes it a bit better for glute and hamstring development in particular since the shins are more vertical when box squatting.
Front Squat: This squat variation can be a bit uncomfortable but it’s great for quadriceps development. It’s also more taxing on your back, specifically the Spinal Erectors that run on both sides of your spine, because the bar is placed on the front of your shoulders. It’s also easier to hit good depth because of the front bar position which feels a bit more natural when squatting.
Goblet Squat: The goblet squat is often overlooked and is underutilized in my opinion. With beginner lifters who’ve never squatted before, a goblet squat is usually my go-to squat variation because it’s the easiest to learn, trains the squat pattern well, and can is a good way to get stronger safely for beginners. For more advanced lifters it’s a great way to get in higher rep leg training and training the full squat range of motion or even as a warm up. The goblet squat is mostly quad dominant but the glutes also play a role and get some development as well.
One variation I didn’t include which I really like is the belt squat. Many gyms don’t have a belt squat so I didn’t include it for that reason but if your gym does, I’d suggest using it. It’s great for quad and glute development and places a lot less force on your lower back than other squat variations.