The million-dollar question; “How do I fix my squat? I seem to shift over to the right when I squat down.”
Uneven squats can be a frustrating and potentially dangerous problem for those who are trying to build strength and improve their athletic performance.
The good news is that there are several reasons why your squats may be uneven, and many of them can be corrected with proper coaching, training and sports therapy.
One of the most common causes of uneven squats is muscle imbalance. If one side of your body is stronger or more flexible than the other, it can cause you to lean or twist when you squat, leading to uneven movement. Strengthening the weaker side of your body and working on your flexibility can help correct this issue.
Another reason why your squats may be uneven is due to improper technique. If you’re not using the right form when you squat, you could be putting unnecessary strain on one side of your body, leading to pain and injury. A skilled coach or sports therapist can help you identify and correct any issues with your technique.
Muscle or joint injury
In some cases, an uneven squat can be caused by a pathological condition, such as a muscle or joint injury. If you are experiencing pain or discomfort when you squat, it’s important to see a doctor or physical therapist to rule out any underlying conditions that may be contributing to your uneven squats.
At Injury Active, we believe that successful movement in specific planes of motion is key to positive overall movement and reducing the risk of injury. Our team of sports and physiotherapists and coaches can help you identify the root cause of your uneven squats and develop a personalised training plan to address the issue. This may include a combination of strength training, stretching, and technique work to help you correct any muscle imbalances and improve your form.
It’s important to remember that every case is different and that an individual assessment is necessary to figure out why your squats are uneven and how to correct them. With the right support and guidance, however, you can overcome this issue and build a strong, healthy, and balanced body.
Hip shift or lack of internal rotation
With that being said, one of the most common faults we see with a hip shift is a lack of hip internal rotation from one side or both. If we were to recommend one thing to try and improve first, the hip internal rotation would be the first point of call.
Hip internal rotation is considered an important aspect of the squat for several reasons.
- Improved Stability: Hip internal rotation helps to increase stability in the squat by creating a more stable base and improving the alignment of the hips, knees, and feet. This improved stability allows for better control and proper form throughout the entire movement.
- Enhanced movement efficiency: Hip internal rotation helps to optimise the use of the hip musculature, which can improve the efficiency of the squat movement.
- Improved muscular activation: Hip internal rotation helps to activate key muscles in the hip, such as the glutes, hamstrings, and adductors, which are important for proper squat form and stability.
One way to test to see how your hips perform in the internal rotation is through the seated hip internal rotation test, which can also be used as a mobilisation tool to improve the range if there is a deficit.
Start by sitting on the floor with your legs bent at 90 degrees and your feet flat on the floor. Feet are shoulder-width apart. Aim to send the inside of your right knee to the floor, or as far as it can go. Return the knee back to the original position and then test with the left side.
If you are unable to do this comfortably, or with full range (to the floor) without raising your bum, then continue to perform this exercise daily for an accumulation of 30 reps per day. Keep an eye on your squat to see if this has helped with your positioning.