You can't force it back. You can try, but most likely you can order up a side of injury with the force. Why do I mention this to Pilates Afterschool parents? Because maybe, just maybe, if we can encourage more squatting at home and with our kids, they will be able to maintain some of their natural ability to squat.
When my beautiful friend shared this gorgeous photo of her family. Adorable, no? I know. Now, what is also interesting to see is the progressions of squats from Full to Western.
Hanging out and socializing. Resting. Bath-rooming. Working in fields, cooking, squatting by the fire. It might be nearly impossible to keep the squat alive in your kids. But what you can do:
1. Model it. It is not easy, but families who play on the floor, or eat on the floor will have much more squatting going on then those who don't. Kids can still squat easily, so they can squat while you sit. I can't hang out in a comfortable squat, but they can. And when they do, I compliment them.
2. Squatty potty. At least when you bathroom you can have your hips in the more natural bath-rooming position and for those minutes during the day, your family can be in deeper hip/knee/ankle flexion then the 90 degree bend you'll have on most toilets.
3. Keep them out of shoes when possible. Why? Well, some reasons you can read about here. But also, one reason that the Full Squat is unattainable for most of us is that our ankles are too inflexible and our lower leg muscles are too short. You can see this when you try to squat and one of many things happen: 1. Either the heels lift up and if you try to lower them, your whole squat changes to deal. 2. Your hips need to open wide, wide to change the position of the leg bones to deal. 3. Your feet turn out like a duck to deal.
If you want a legitimate workout while you play with your kids on the floor, just try these movements: http://www.katysays.com/dont-just-sit-there-with-kids/
As you squat for whatever reason, take a look at what your body does to deal. And then look at your kids and see what the squat they're up to! If you can full squat, let me know!