To be able to squat on one leg you are first going to need to be able to squat on two legs. The two leg squat and one leg squat have slightly different technique requirements but are similar enough to make the two leg version an appropriate starting point. A good squat requires sufficient mobility in the hips, knees, and ankles. It does not require a lot of strength to perform 10 body-weight squats, where people tend to struggle is with the mobility aspect. Ideally you should be able to squat to a depth where your hamstrings touch your calves and your spine is neutral. If you are unable to squat with the form described below go to the squat mobility tutorial.
- Place your feet at a width that allows you to achieve the fullest range of motion whilst maintaining a neutral spine. Some experimentation may be required to find the position that works best for you. If you have difficulty with the squat use a door frame or other similar structure to support you while you explore the position. In a narrow squat the feet should be parallel, as squat width increases the feet can turn out more. Whatever width you choose, your knees should track inline with your feet.
- Inhale and tense your glutes and abs whilst keeping your spine neutral.
- Lift your arms to shoulder level and ‘break the bar’, turning your thumbs up.
- Keep your weight in the centre of the foot.
- Initiate the move by pushing your hamstrings back. Lower slowly, maintaining a neutral spine and taking about 3 seconds to reach the bottom position.
- Pause at the bottom to eliminate any bouncing.
- Push back up letting your breath out with a hissing sound as you near the top.
Make sure you can perform at least 20 controlled squats with ease before progressing to the pistol squat.