The back squat has long been heralded as one of the best lower body strength and power building exercises possible.
For people that can perform a barbell back squat with proper form (most people can't), it definitely can be a fantastic exercise.
However, going super heavy and loading the spine with a bar on your back is typically not all that safe (or necessary) for the average person just trying to stay healthy and get a bit stronger. Not to mention as we get older, it's beneficial to avoid exercises that put that much stress on the body.
But we still need to develop strength and power in the lower body, so what do we do? What are some safer alternatives to the popular barbell back squat exercise?