Here’s an easy test to find out. The goal is to determine (1) if you have mobility limitations and (2) where those limitations are coming from.

Part A – do a squat in bare feet. Stand so the side of your body is facing a mirror. Put your hands either out in front of you or cross your arms so your hands are touching opposite shoulders.

Perform a squat where hip-crease reaches just below parallel. If you can only reach below parallel by flexing your lower back i.e. a butt wink OR you can’t reach depth at all consider “Part A” = Failed.

Part B – Now perform the same test with a 3 inch platform under your heels. Again, buttwink or inability to reach depth = a failed test.


Fail + Fail = limited hip mobility. A lifting shoe will not provide immediate help.
Fail + Pass = limited ankle mobility. Weightlifting shoes will provide immediate help with your form. It doesn’t mean, neglect ankle mobility and just get lifting shoes, but it is a good indicator that an elevated heel will help.
Pass + Pass = do whatever feels best for you, you’re not limited by lower body mobility while trying to achieve depth.
Pass + Fail = should not occur.
Written by Coach @hayden.bowe

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