Mirrors at the gym are there for watching our form, but a recent study carried out at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago found that they might not be the best tool when we’re watching squats to make sure we’re avoiding preferential loading. Preferential loading is when more weight is put on one leg than the other and is of course avoided for safety reasons as well as improper positioning that could lead to uneven muscle gains.
According to Monica Rho, MD, who was the lead researcher of the study:
“The goal of most people who perform double leg squats as part of their exercise routine is to make sure their weight is evenly distributed on each leg. Everyone tries to achieve symmetry because they want to work out each leg equally during the squat. However, there is no data out there that demonstrates whether or not a mirror helps the loading symmetry of a squat, and this study was designed to answer that question.”