The squat is the king of lower body exercises. Squats strengthen the major muscles in the thighs, buttocks, core, back, and hips. Building these muscles support the surrounding joints and tissues. Doing so can reduce the risk of injury and create a higher degree of efficiency in sports and in daily functional activities.

The front squat involves loading weight in the front of the body. Proper form, via activation of specific muscles, is crucial to avoid injury in such movements. Performance of a proper front squat involves:

1. Picking up the barbell and placing it in a front rack position via the use of the anterior shoulder muscles. Curl the fingers under the bar, facing forward and up, and position the feet approximately shoulder-width apart.

2. As you lower down into a squat, keep the chest up, the elbows high, and slowly sit back as if you were going to sit in a chair. Maintain an upright position to improve the efficiency and effectiveness in increasing muscular strength. Thus, the back should not hunch forward.

3. To return to the starting position, push back up through your heels, while, again, maintaining a straight posture.

A common dysfunction when performing the front squat is the inability to maintain a good thoracic spine posture. Often this error is due to poor activation of the erector spinae muscles, the muscles responsible for maintaining an upright position. The erector spinae muscle consists of three groups of muscles that run down either side of the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar spinal regions. Activation of the erector spinae muscle is further vital to maintaining a good front rack position in the front squat. Poor activation of these muscles can result in incorrect form and consequently, injury.

Compex’s Electric Muscle Stimulation devices aid in activating the back muscles and promoting proper technique. An essential tool for many health care professionals, sports coaches, athletes, and individuals with a keen interest in exercise technology, Electric Muscle Stimulation will train you to use your body and activate your muscles properly during the front squat. The placement of the electrodes, for the erector spinae muscle, is on either side of the thoracic spine. The electrical impulse creates an Action Potential aiding in contraction and awareness of these muscles. The Action Potential and the physiological changes that follow it are exactly the same as if your brain was asking the muscles to contract.  In other words, it strengthens the brain to muscle connections helping you build the correct muscle strength. Further, the greater muscle fiber recruitment, facilitated by the Electric Muscle Stimulation devices, in the erector spinae help you keep the back upright in the front squat exercise.

 

The Compex’s Electric Muscle Stimulation can take your workout to the next level. However, in conjunction with the Compex Electric Muscle Stimulation, it is advised to include a warm-up before your training session, as well as a cool-down after your workout. It is further recommended to consult your local healthcare professional before starting any exercise program. Incorporate Compex into your training routine, starting today, to reduce the risk of injury, improve exercise performance, and reach your goals faster.

What Compex program should I use?

The choice of the program should always be alligned with your particular goal, sport/activity, and to what you'd be achieving if exercising and/or rehabing without Compex. 

Considering the erector spinae muscles are postural muscles, which are slow-twitch muscle fibres dominant since they should be turned on all the time, we recommend you using the Endurance Program. This program focus in targetting the slow twitch muscle fibres through the lower range of impulses per second used (aka Hertz). The contraction phase of the Endurance Program is 9 seconds and the relaxation phase is 2 seconds.

Another program that we recommend you to use in this scenario is the "Reinforcement" program under the 'Rehabilitation" category of programs. This program is ideal for muscles that have lost their strength and speed of contraction. This program is adapted to the physiology of fast twitch type II muscle fibres and aids is restoring its contraction speed and strength, reinforcing the brain-muscle connection further. 

If you're doing 4x session a week, for example, use the Endurance Program twitce, and the Reinforcement program twice. 

What intensity level should I use?

For programs inducing a sustained muscular contraction (eg: strength, endurance, resistance, rehabilitation), the number of muscle fibres recruited depends on the stimulation intensity reached. 

The maximum stimulation intensity must therefore be used in order to engage as many fibres as possible. Below certain stimulation intensity, the number of fibres engaged is too low to considerably improve the quality of the muscle.

We encourage you to try and gradually increase the intensity levels (maximum on the Compex devices is 999 = 120mA). You'll be surprised of how much more you can sustain. However, keep it beareable. 

 

Learn why Compex is the World Leader in Electric Muscle Stimulation and will offer you a treatment that is safe, comfortable, and efficient.  

 

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Compex is part of the DJO Global family,. DJO is multinational orthopedic medical device company and we can assist you to get and keep moving. From prevention to recovery, DJO Global enables people to live their lives to the fullest by providing intelligent medical technologies and services. #MotionIsMedicine