Goblet Squat: Drop it Like it’s Hot

Squats as you all know are a great exercise to keep the body functional, strong, powerful, and running like a well oiled machine.  Lucky for us there is a wide range of variety with squat movements to help us get stronger in slightly different ways and keep boredom at bay.  Also, by switching up and doing some squat variations as assistance exercises can help you make better gains on your heavy back squats.

Which brings me to the goblet squat…


I am not questioning your will or desire to do a goblet squat, but your basic functional capability to correctly pull it off.  The goblet squat challenges proper movement throughout the whole kinetic chain.  So what do I mean? You need…

  • the ability to keep your body weight distributed over your whole entire foot.  The ability to resist pronating, or rolling onto the inside of your foot.
  • flexible ankle dorsiflexion (ability of the shin to come towards the top of the foot or vice versa) in order for knee to come forward, tracking over the toes.
  • strength in the quadricep muscles in order to push yourself back out of the squat without resorting to any compensation and break down in form.
  • mobility in the hips in order to drop deep enough into the squat
  • the ability to hip hinge and get the hips pushed back to fire on the glutes to work as a brake during the downward phase of the squat and keeping the knees stabilized over the toes
  • the ability to maintain a neutral lumbar pelvic position by way of strong lumbar erectors
  • strength in the thoracic extensors to keep the upper body back instead of collapsing in and rounding forward.
  • ability to walk and chew gum (or do these 7 things simultaneously)

Now if your body is in good functional shape, it will take care of most of these without any extra focus.

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The goblet squat can be incorporated into your training in many various ways.  The first being a warmup.  As you can tell from the previous section, the whole body is being used.  So doing a few reps will increase the heartrate and get the muscles warmed up.  It will also help to get the body moving and through some good mobility.  With that said, I would just like to point out the “if you don’t use it, you lose it” philosophy here.  If you are able to do a goblet squat, then make it a habit of doing regularly.  This will keep everything working properly throughout not only your training life, but your everyday life.

And of course, include it in your training.  Strength training, circuit training, finishers, fillers, get it in where you can.  Your body will thank you.



Cues on how to do a proper goblet squat…

  • tuck the weight into your chest.  A dumbbell, kettlebell, or weight plate.
  • keep your elbows tucked in
  • Set your feet slightly wider than shoulder width pointing outward 0-30 degrees
  • push the hips back and sit down into a squat as deep as you can
  • keeping the knees pushed out, the elbows should sit inside of the knees
  • keep the upper back extended and stay tall through the upper body, maintaining neutral in the pelvis
  • push the heels into the floor and return to a standing position
About The Author

Kevin Fulton

Kevin Fulton is personal trainer in Pittsburgh, PA. His goal is to help his clients look, feel, and move better. In his spare time you can find him under a barbell or practicing jiu jitsu.

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