Loosening up your hips with wall squats is key to avoiding injuries.
Not only are you at risk for injuries if you're not doing them correctly, but you're making the exercise harder for yourself as well—when your body is tight and lacking mobility, it has to fight against these poorly moving tissues.
All in all, the bodyweight squat should feel natural and pain free. There are many drills and exercises you can do to work on this, including the banded wall squat shown in the video above.
How to Do a Banded Wall Squat:
Put your thumbs in a resistance band and bring it behind your back, creating loops on both ends. Then sit down on the floor next to a wall, and place your feet flat on the wall in your squat stance.
Next, loop the band around your knees and lay down. From the side, this should look like a deep squat with your feet shoulder-width apart and touching the wall, your knees bent, and your spine flat on the floor.
Hold this position for about two minutes, but stop if you feel any sharp pains, pinching, tingling, or numbness.
What you're doing is using the tension from the bands to pull the femur deep in the hip capsule. Feel free to move your hips and knees around to find where your tight spots are.
If you want to challenge yourself afterwards, keep your left foot on the wall and cross your right for over your knee to stretch your glutes.
Hold this position for two minutes, then switch sides and hold for another two minutes. Feel free to back away from the wall you feel any discomfort.