1. Position the bar on the floor standing with one leg on each side of it.
2. Firmly grip the bar, with your hands almost double shoulder-width apart. As you lift the bar off the floor, keep your shoulder blades together and chest up, and ensure there is a normal (stable) curve in your lower back.
3. Position your feet shoulder-width apart (or slightly wider), toes angled out at 30°.
1. Begin raising yourself up, and do not lock your knees.
2. Keeping your head up and your trunk erect, slowly lower yourself down until your thighs are parallel to the ground; it is not wise to go any further than this. Keep your knees aligned over your feet, pointing in the direction of your toes. Hold for a count of one.
3. From here, pull the weight up, pushing hard through your feet and keeping your body erect as you return to the starting position.
• You should maintain the natural curve in your back throughout the movement.
• If you lack ankle flexibility, it's better to work on your ankle flexibility to improve your range of movement rather than to use a board under your heels. This is potentially dangerous for the knees because it moves the knees forward over the feet and can actually reduce your flexibility.
• Breathe in as you lower the weight, allowing your chest to expand and pulling your tummy button in towards the spine. Exhale as you push upwards.
• Keep your eyes fixed on a point in front of you at about eye level.
• Make sure you do not bend forwards excessively or curve your back as this will stress your lower back and reduce the emphasis on your legs.
• Keep your knees tracking over your toes as you rise.
• Do not rely on a weight belt unless you are using maximal weight or it could result in a weakening of the abdominal muscles. The abdominal wall should be drawn in towards the spine rather than pushing out against a belt when lifting.