“More booty gains!” you say before loading up the barbell for heavy squats. You squatted yesterday. You’ll squat again tomorrow. In fact, you squat every day. More is better, right?
Well, yes and no. Squatting every day can offer immense benefits, but it’s also not something you should do on a whim. Strategy is important.
If you think you might want to squat every day — or if you already are — keep scrolling for all the most important details.
Is it a Good Idea to Squat Every Day?
The answer: Maybe.
Very generally speaking, lifting more (if done properly) can mean faster muscle growth, strength gains, and fat loss. Squatting is a compound movement, which means you get a lot of bang for your buck. It works your legs, core, back — just about everything.
Psst! Read our blog on the benefits of compound movements.
What it comes down to is that if you squat every day, ultimately, you’re spending more time under tension. And time under tension is what builds muscle.
So, squatting every day does offer potential benefits. But…
Can this also be too much wear and tear on your body? Yes — if not done properly! Our bodies were built to squat. It’s something we do very naturally, every single day, inside and outside of the gym. So, squatting in and of itself isn’t dangerous.
It’s when you add in a heavy barbell that things start to get tricky.
If you squat too heavy, too often, you might start experiencing the symptoms of overtraining. Exhaustion and overuse happen when you repeat one movement/motion constantly over time, and it can lead to severe muscle soreness and even injury. More specifically, you might experience swelling, inflammation, numbness, strain, and even tendonitis.
In the end, daily squatting can actually work against you.
Is this an automatic result when you squat every day? No. But a lot of athletes go into this type of programming not fully understanding just how demanding it is of your body. Squatting recruits so many muscle fibers. Going about it safely and strategically is an absolute must.
Additionally, some athletes might find that plain and simple, squatting every day gets boring, especially if you’re doing it at the expense of other important lifts and exercises.
But can it be done? Yes! Let’s talk about what this might look like.
How to Squat Every Day Safely and Effectively
If you want daily squatting to work in your favor, here are a few important pointers.
1. Change Up the Type of Squat You’re Doing
Sure, you’ve got front and back squats. But there’s so much more you can be doing! Have you checked out our blog on challenging squat variations? There are all sorts of ways to change up your squats so that you’re still getting the benefits, but you’re not doing the same exact thing every day.
This is good for the mind and the body. You won’t have as much of a chance to get bored, and you’re challenging your body in unique ways throughout the week.
Don’t limit yourself to front and back squats. There’s a world of variations out there.
2. Vary the Load and Reps
Beyond switching up the type of squat, you need to be switching up the load (weights) and reps. “But I want to squat heavy every day!” you yell as you add another plate to the bar.
Hold up. Squatting heavy every day is a great way to experience the overtraining and burnout that we talked about earlier. As you now know, going too heavy, too often can not only hinder your progress but can also leave you injured.
From day to day, consider alternating between high-weight/low-rep and low-weight/high-rep. Heck, you might even throw in a day of low-weight/low-rep every now and again. If you did a 3×10 front squat yesterday, you should (a) opt for another squat variation today, and (b) back off the reps.
Remember, we do this to avoid muscle overuse. Yes, you can squat every day, but you have to work with your body, not against it.
3. Balance it Out
Squatting should be part of a well-rounded training program. You shouldn’t be doing it at the expense of other important movements in the gym.
If you squat every day but never make time for deadlifts, presses, rows, and so on, true, you’re getting the benefits of a single compound movement (squatting), but you’re still missing out on a lot of other things.
Squatting is great. It’s needed. But it’s not the end all, be all. Other things need and deserve your attention.
4. Recovery Will Be Mandatory
Let’s be clear: Recovery is always a must. Training breaks your muscles down. Rest builds them back up. Without recovery, gains are impossible.
This is going to be even more important if you want to squat every day.
Your hips, knees, and back are going to take a beating. “But how can I make time for recovery if I squat every day?” you ask. Great question! Active recovery is something you should incorporate alongside your squatting. You can even treat it like your cool-down. Specific supplements for recovery are also easy to sneak in.
We get that you might feel like recovery will take time away from squatting, but really, it goes hand-in-hand with squatting. This will help you stay mobile, healthy, feeling good, and injury-free.
Also, don’t forget about simple things like rolling out on a foam roller, spending time on a lacrosse ball, and taking hot baths with Epsom salt. These are simple ways to keep your body in top shape.
Can you squat every day? Yes! Does it require planning and strategy? Again, yes. Go about it with a specific intention, and you’ll be able to do it both safely and effectively.