Powerful as they are, sissy squats are an exercise that is new and unfamiliar to most people, as it has a specialist focus. We receive a lot of questions about perfecting sissy squats form, both online and in person, so here’s our attempt to cover some of them – to make sure your sissy squat form is as good as possible to rectify your patella maltracking.
1. Where should I bend?
The only movement in sissy squats comes place in the knees and ankles; your body above the knee should form one straight line (knee to hip to shoulder),. Lean your shoulders away from the wall while you allow your hips and knees to drifts forwards.
2. How high should the platform be?
The best height for a sissy squat platform is about two inches.
3. Is a platform really necessary?
Giving yourself an artificial heel allows a longer range of motion to the sissy squat as the shin can incline further forward before reaching the end of your dorsi-flexion range of motion at the ankle. It is possible to do a sissy squat without a platform, but these will be shorter range and so less effective at improving your patella tracking through large range movements.
4. What shoes should I wear?
For sissy squats, the most appropriate footwear is something with a firm sole, helping keep the foot supported as it rests on the platform.
5. How deep should I dip?
Sissy squats work by increasing your range of motion at your knees, by pushing your limits. To improve, you therefore need to travel as far as necessary to approach the first point of discomfort. This is generally not measured by how low you go, but by how far forwards your knees travel.
6. How far should I stand from the wall?
The distance you travel has to be entirely personal. You should stand as close to your target as necessary, to achieve some travel without unbearable pain.
7. Where should I look during the sissy squat?
The body above the knee should form a straight line, so keep your head in line with the spine; this means you will look perpendicular to your back angle. This translates to looking straight ahead at the start but then looking higher up the wall as you bend.
If you have any further questions about sissy squats that we have not covered here, please let us know and we’ll add them to the list! Otherwise, use this knowledge wisely to complete one of the most effective exercises possible in correcting knee problems.