Greater range of motion
When you squat, your hips have to go below your knees. This is called “breaking parallel.” For tall people, this requires a greater range of motion. Taller people have to squat lower to achieve the same results as shorter people.
Using your full range of motion is important for tall people because it helps:
- Build muscle
- Improve flexibility
- Prevent injuries
If you don’t squat through a full range of motion, you’re not getting the most out of the exercise. You’re also more likely to get injured.
However studies have found that using a full range of motion on a 1 rep max (PR) is not beneficial. For muscle building using a full range of motion with a rep range of 8-12 is seen as the sweet spot. The same counts for endurance training, for example your main focus is jumping higher. Squatting with a full range of motion in a rep range of 8-12 per set is most optimal for results.
Nevertheless taller people have a greater range of motion because of their longer limbs. This is something that can’t be changed. This makes them at a disadvantage when squatting. Especially when it comes to squatting with a full range of motion.
More weight to get the same results
If you want to build muscle, you have to squat with heavy weights. The heavier the weights, the more muscle you’ll build. Working volume is the most important factor for all lifters when building muscle. But again taller people have a slight disadvantage here.
Tall people have to use more weight to get the same results as shorter people. This is because tall people have a higher body surface area to mass ratio. This means that tall people have more skin and fat, and less muscle.
Tall people also have longer limbs. This means that they have a longer lever to work against when squatting. Longer levers are harder to move than shorter levers. This is why tall people have to use more weight to get the same results as shorter people.
Center of gravity is higher
Your center of gravity is the point where your body’s mass is evenly balanced. It’s the point around which your body turns. For tall people, the center of gravity is higher. This is because tall people have longer limbs.
A higher center of gravity makes squatting harder. It’s harder to keep your balance. This is why tall people have to be more careful when squatting. That is why it is extremely important to focus first on form and second on weight when tall and squatting.
You might find that taller people have to get used to squatting for a longer period of time. This can best be trained by squatting with an empty bar first and perfecting your form. Form should always be your number one priority when squatting, no matter how tall you are.
Tall people have longer limbs. This means that they have a longer lever to work against when squatting. Longer levers are harder to move than shorter levers. This is why tall people have to use more weight to get the same results as shorter people.
The limbs are the longest when tall people squat with a wide stance. This is because the limb length is measured from the hip joint to the floor. When tall people squat with a narrow stance, the limbs are shorter. This is because the limb length is measured from the knee joint to the floor.
The length of your limbs also determines how deep you can squat. Taller people can’t squat as deeply as shorter people. This is because their limbs are longer.
Control weight better
Tall people have longer limbs. This means that they can control weight better. Tall people can squat with heavy weights without losing balance. This is because their limbs are longer.
Tall people can also squat with a wider stance. This is because their limbs are longer. A wider stance helps tall people to stay balanced. It also helps them to control the weight better.
The weight for taller people already has to increase but keeping the weight in control is a much more important factor. When the weight gets out of control bad things can happen, for example you can hurt your lower back.
By controlling your weight better you can stay safe and squat with a heavier weight. This will help you to build more muscle in the end.
It’s harder to keep your balance. This is why tall people have to be more careful when squatting.
Tall people can stay balanced by squatting with a wider stance. Using a wider stance in squatting in general is good for tall people. This is because their limbs are longer and they have a higher center of gravity.
A wider stance helps tall people to stay balanced. It also helps them to control the weight better. Tall people can also squat with a heavier weight. This is because their limbs are longer.
But the balance is not only important for safety. It is also important for tall people to be able to squat with a heavier weight. When you are more balanced you can control the weight better. This means that you can use more muscle to squat and hence build more muscle.
Use more muscles
There are a variety of factors that can influence how much muscle is used when squatting. However, it is generally accepted that taller people tend to use more muscle when squatting, due to their longer limbs and higher center of gravity.
Tall people have to use more muscles when squatting because they have to hold their torso up and keep it straight while they bend their knees and hips. Short people don’t have this problem because they can use their shorter legs to hold their torso up and keep it straight. This is why squatting is harder for taller people and this is why they may struggle with it especially if they are unaccustomed to squatting.
Taller people have to be more coordinated when squatting because their center of mass tends to be higher. As a result, the squat is more challenging for them because they need to control the bar path from a higher position.
On the other hand, shorter people don’t have to be as careful. The bottom position is lower, which means they have less distance to control the bar. Thus, shorter people can use more brute force, which makes the squat more stable.
Taller athletes have to ensure that their center of mass is positioned below the bar, which is exactly what the squat requires them to do. In an ideal situation, the center of mass should be positioned below the bar. The bar, in turn, should be positioned directly over the midfoot. If this doesn’t happen, the athlete can lose balance and fall forward. This can result in an injury, but it can also cause a missed lift.
The reason flexibility is so important for tall people when squatting is because of the distance between the hips and the knees. The longer the legs, the greater the distance between your hips and knees. The greater the distance between the hips and knees, the more flexible you must be between them in order to squat down and keep your back upright.
Naturally, this applies to all squat variations. If you’re taller and don’t have the flexibility to squat down and keep your back upright, it’s going to cause a lot of strain and soreness in your lower back.
The good news is that you can improve your overall flexibility with just a few stretching sessions. Here are a few simple stretches you should try:
- Stand up straight and place your feet a little wider than hip-width apart.
- Bend your knees and squat down as low as you can, being careful not to let your knees come over your toes.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Stand up straight and place one foot in front of the other.
- Lift your front foot and place the ball of your foot on a low step or a small hurdle.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds to 1 minute, then switch legs.
Hip flexor stretch:
- While standing up straight, cross one leg over the other at the ankle.
- Bend the front knee and pull it toward your chest.
- Hold this position for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Conclusion on 6 Reasons Why Squatting is Harder for Tall People
If you are a taller person you might find that squatting seems to be harder than for people below your height. This is in a way true, for example you have to use a greater range of motion and more muscles to receive eventually the same results. Also you have to hold a more stable balance than shorter people, this includes having a good flexibility, controlling the weight and being more coordinated. This can be very hard if you have long limbs. There are a few stretches you can do to increase your flexibility such as: Deep squat, hurdle stretch, and the hip flexor stretch. These stretches will help you become more flexible and be able to squat correctly without any lower back pain. It is important to find the right balance of weight, range of motion and control to squat properly without any injuries. Nevertheless, do not be discouraged and keep on practicing! It will eventually pay off.