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How To Do Sumo Squats With Perfect Form

Published January 12, 2018
KC Clements

Written By: KC Clements, MS

KC holds a Master of Arts in Gender Politics from New York University

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<script type="application/ld+json"> { "@context":"http://schema.org", "@type":"BlogPosting", "author": { "@type": "Person", "name": "Elisa Silva" }, "publisher": { "@type": "Organization", "name": "Warrior Made", "logo": { "@type": "ImageObject", "url": "https://www.warriormade.com", "image": "https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/media/public/2019/11/Beginner_SUMO_SQUATS.jpg" } }, "headline":"How To Do Sumo Squats With Perfect Form", "datePublished":"2018-01-12", "dateModified": "2019-10-30", "description":"Learn How To Do Sumo Squats With Perfect Form.", "image": "https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/media/public/2019/11/Beginner_SUMO_SQUATS.jpg" } </script> <article> <div> <ul> <li><a href="#section1">Instructions</a></li> <li><a href="#section2">Things to Keep in Mind</a></li> <li><a href="#section3">Conclusion</a></li> </ul> </div> <section> <p>Chances are you’re already familiar with squats. After all they’re one of the most popular compound exercises in the fitness world. What you might not know is that there are many different variations of the squat. Each one targets different muscles and works your body in unique ways. Here we’re going to teach you a beginner variation to help you build strength and improve flexibility: the Sumo squat.</p> <p>There’s a reason why they call this move the Sumo squat. Stand up with your feet together then rotate your right leg from the hip then place it on the ground so your body is in a wide stance, toes pointed slightly outward. Picture the movement Sumo wrestlers make when beginning a match—it’s like that. Drop into a partial squat then drag your left leg to meet your right leg until you’re back to the starting position. Perform the same movement on the opposite side and repeat!</p> <p>This move can be a little challenging when you’re getting started, especially since it requires some balance. Try modifying it by placing your hands on your knees as you squat to help you maintain balance and stability. Over time you’ll build up the strength to do the full movement unassisted.</p> <p>Once you’ve perfected your sumo wrestler impression—er, Sumo squat—you’ll be ready to take on the high side lunge, an intermediate exercise that builds on the Sumo squat. Step your right leg out to the side just like you did for the Sumo squat, but this time step out even further. When you drop towards the ground, your left leg should extend while your right bends. This move promotes muscle symmetry in your quads, glutes, and hamstrings, while giving you a great stretch.</p> <p>Finally, you’ll tackle the low side lunge. As you might guess, this move is almost exactly the same as the high side lunge. For the low version, you’re going to drop even further down to the ground than you did with the high side lunge. The great thing about this move is that you can start with the high side lunge and gradually drop lower down over time, allowing you to develop the strength you need to make the full range of motion safely.</p> <p>But first, let’s get started by learning how to do the perfect Sumo squat.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section> <section id="section1"> <h2>Instructions</h2> <ol> <li>Start in a standing position with your legs together and your left foot pointed slightly outward.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-1.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-1.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-1.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-LR-1.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sumo-squats-1"> </picture> <li>Lift your right leg and rotate it fully at the hip as though you’re stepping over a fence.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-2.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-2.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-2.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-LR-2.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sumo-squats-2"> </picture> <li>Bring your right foot to the ground so that you’re in a wide stance with your toes pointed slightly outward.</li> <li>Drop into a half squat with your arms out in front of you.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-3.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-3.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-3.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-LR-3.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sumo-squats-3"> </picture> <li>Slide your left leg towards your right leg until you’ve returned to a normal standing position.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-4.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-4.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-4.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-LR-4.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sumo-squats-4"> </picture> <li>Repeat the movement on the opposite side, rotating your left leg at the hip and dropping into a squat.</li> <li>Continue alternating until you’ve reached the desired number of repetitions.</li> </ol> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section> <section id="section2"> <h2>Things to keep in mind</h2> <ul> <li>Make sure that your knees don’t wobble or cave in when you enter into the squat, but rather track over the toes. Your femur—the thigh bone—should be in straight line with your toes.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-5.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-5.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-5.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-LR-5.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sumo-squats-5"> </picture> <li>Distribute your weight so that 70% of your weight is on your heels and 30% is on your toes. This is to maintain balance and ensure you’re targeting the right muscles.</li> <li>When you enter into the squat, keep your torso as upright as you can. This will ensure that the pressure from the movement is on your glutes and not your knees. To stay in that nice upright position, it’s helpful to imagine that there’s a wall in front of you that you can’t touch.</li> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-6.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-6.jp2" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-6.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/instructionals-content/sumo-squats-LR-6.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sumo-squats-6"> </picture> <li>Exhale with force as you drop into the squat and take a strong breath in as you drag your foot to return to the standing position. This is going to get the blood pumping to your muscles and your metabolism working to help you burn fat.</li> <li>Keep your back straight and upright, not hunched forward. When you drop into the squat, if your pelvis starts to tuck and your back begins to hunch, that means you’ve gone too low. Only drop as far down as you can while maintaining good form.</li> <li>Drive through your knees and press them out as hard as you can during the exercise. This is going to make sure that the targeted muscles stay active and your knees remain in good alignment.</li> </ul> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section> <section id="section3"> <h2>Conclusion:</h2> <p>As with all of the exercises we teach you, the key to getting the best results from this exercise is to focus on maintaining perfect form throughout the movement. When you start out, take it slow and don’t push yourself beyond what feels comfortable for you. Over time, you’ll see dramatic improvements in your strength and flexibility. You’ll need both to take this move to the next level and prepare yourself for more challenging variations.</p> <p>Again, if you’re struggling at first, you can modify the exercise. Do this by placing your hands on your knees as you drop into the squat rather than putting your arms out in front of you. This will help you to focus on keeping form as you develop the strength you need to keep yourself balanced.</p> <p>The high side lunge will force you to extend your leg further, which means you’ll get a good stretch while firing your glutes, quads, and hamstrings even harder than you did for the Sumo squat. Over time, push yourself to drop a little lower until you’ve gotten yourself into a low side lunge—the most difficult variation on this exercise. The low side lunge will challenge you, but it’s also going to give you some amazing benefits; including building lower body strength, improving mobility, and increasing flexibility.</p> <p>One more great benefit of the Sumo squat is that you can do it anywhere you’ve got a few feet of open space to stomp around. Try adding a few sets to your next workout or do some repetitions when you’ve got a few minutes to spare around the house.</p> <p>If this exercise is too easy, try <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/exercise/perfect-form-high-side-lunge/">High Side Lunges</a>.</p> </section> </article>

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