Proper Wall Sit-Down Exercise
Performing movements to build muscle help improve the metabolism, decrease the risk of osteoporosis and injury, help the cardiovascular system, and improve appearance. While the most familiar types of strength exercises involve movement through a specific range of motion, you can build strength in other ways. Isometric or static exercises build strength by holding muscular contraction against resistance. The wall sit-down exercise builds strength in the lower body by isometric contraction.
A wall sit-down exercise starts by standing about 2 feet away from a wall with your back against the wall. Slide your back down the wall until your hips and knees bend at a 90-degree angle. Keep your shoulders, upper back and back of your head against the wall. Evenly distribute your weight throughout your whole foot. Hold this position for the desired amount of time.
To vary what muscles you work, place a ball between your knees. Squeeze the ball and hold to work the inner thigh muscles. Take a strap or belt and wrap it around your thighs just above the knee. Press against the strap to work the outer thigh or abductor muscles. To add intensity, use weights or add to the amount of time you stay seated.
A wall sit exercise works the entire muscular system of the lower body. The quadriceps and buttocks work to hold the body in place. Since this is an isometric exercise, the endurance in the lower body muscles improves the longer you hold the position. The wall sit-down exercise improves performance in running, skiing and any sport involving jumping. Practicing this exercise makes it easier to get up and down off the floor and to use the leg muscles to lift heavy objects.
While the wall sit-down puts less stress on the knees, hips and back, you still want to use caution when performing the exercise. Slide down the wall as far as you feel comfortable. If you experience pain, stop or move your body higher up on the wall. Be sure to keep your weight off your toes. This prevents you from adding stress to your knees.
- Sports Injury Clinic: Wall Sit
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As the owner of Wellness Evolution, Lisa Martin has more than 10 years of experience in the industry, writing a monthly newsletter, blog and articles for various local newspapers. She holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Maryland in dietetics, personal training certification through AFAA and is CSCS-certified through NSCA.