Hi Emily. Over the past 9 years I’ve used a variety of assessments at the beginning of my group training programs including FMS, overhead squat as well as performance assessments for athletes. Group size determines which assessment(s) I chose to use.
I find that the NASM overhead squat assessment is easiest to incorporate into a training session with a group of clients. You can find the overhead squat templates on nasm.org under their resources link. I use the assessment session as an opportunity to teach my clients about their body and to empower them to become their own expert.
For example, I currently have a group of 8 participants. I paired them up and gave them each the NASM overhead squat template. As a group I had them assess each other using the template as a guideline. I always find that my clients enjoy being an active part of their assessments.
To ensure that each participant is assessed correctly, I do one more thing: video tape front and side view of their overhead squat. (This is very simple to do if you have an iPhone/smart phone). I then use the iPhone App called ‘Coaches Eye’ which allows me to take a video of my client and review it for them in slow motion, with annotation and verbal comments. By the next day, I send each participant in my class a personalized coaches review of their assessment with suggestions for flexibility and strengthening exercises.
I hope this helps 🙂