Squat with Overhead Reach

squat with overhead reach

The squat with overhead reach is an excellent exercise that combines lower body mobility and stability with shoulder mobility and core stability. By lowering into a deep squat and reaching your arms overhead, this movement engages the glutes, quads, shoulders, and core, promoting proper posture and balance.

Ideal for athletes and fitness enthusiasts, the squat with overhead reach helps improve functional movement patterns for everyday activities and sports like running, weightlifting, and basketball. This exercise opens up tight hips, strengthens the posterior chain, and activates the core for better stability.

Incorporating the squat with overhead reach into your warm-up or workout routine will improve your range of motion and joint stability. Adjust the intensity by changing the depth of your squat or adding resistance with weights or bands. Practicing this exercise regularly will enhance flexibility, strength, and coordination for improved athletic performance and everyday movement.

Equipment Needed

Open floor

Instructions for squat to overhead reach:

  1. Stand with feet at a comfortable width for squatting
  2. Descend as deep as you can go into a squat without losing a flat spine
  3. With your arms in front of you, hanging between your legs
  4. raise one arm straight overhead 
  5. Hold for a 2+ count
  6. Return to the starting position and switch sides
  7. After you have raised both arms stand up and repeat

Common Errors in the squat with overhead reach

  • Rounded back- make sure you squat as deep as you can without a rounded back
  • Weight shift- In an effort to get your arms higher you may feel the urge to shift your weight to the opposite side. Try to stay as balanced as possible through the entire movement

Progressions / Regressions:

If this is too challenging:

  • Use something stable like a rack or door frame to hold your balance

If you want more of a challenge:

  • Hold a light weight as you press overhead to increase the challenge


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