1. Welcome to the new Styleforum!

    We hope you’re as excited as we are to hang out in the new place. There are more new features that we’ll announce in the near future, but for now we hope you’ll enjoy the new site.

    We are currently fine-tuning the forum for your browsing pleasure, so bear with any lingering dust as we work to make Styleforum even more awesome than it was.

    Oh, and don’t forget to head over to the Styleforum Journal, because we’re giving away two pairs of Carmina shoes to celebrate our move!

    Please address any questions about using the new forum to support@styleforum.net

    Cheers,

    The Styleforum Team

    Dismiss Notice

squats

Discussion in 'Health & Body' started by sprinter, May 19, 2010.

  1. A Y

    A Y Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,592
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Location:
    Southern California
    Manton, you'd be surprised how using a bar rather than dumbbells completely changes things.

    +1. I can't imagine doing anywhere close to my highest weight with dumbbells, nor with form anywhere approaching correct for a low back squat. Some upper body muscle will probably give out well before the muscles you're supposed to be training with the squat will from holding the dumbbells in place. With a barbell, it's basically gravity holding the weight in place.

    I'd really try to find a barbell with an adjustable power or squat rack (the safety pins should be movable up and down, so if you can't stand up again, you can put the barbell down) to do squats properly.

    If your knees are over your ankles, and the weight is over your ankles how would you not fall over considering that the rest of your body would be behind your ankles?

    Edit: I think you meant when initiating the movement, not throughout. my bad


    You have to lean forward to balance yourself --- the barbell needs to be over the center of your foot. The knees should move out to the final positions (somewhere over the toes) by 1/3-1/2 of the way down, and maintain that position to the bottom and up again. There are two reasons for this:

    1. You don't induce tendonitis in your groin area. Believe me, this is no fun at all.

    2. You recruit the hamstrings more actively, so you train them more, and you can move more weight. If your knees slide forward at the bottom of the squat, you will release tension in the hamstrings, so they cannot be used to help you get up again, and they are not trained as intensely.

    These two things are covered in SS in more detail.

    --Andre
     
  2. globetrotter

    globetrotter Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    20,605
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Location:
    greater chicago
    I don't know if my form is right or wrong. All I know is that can barely do 80 pounds with dumbells, 5x5. I mean, it is way hard. 1.5x my body weight seems not merely impossible but preposterous.

    I second the idea of trying with a barbell. it will make it easier to get more weight.

    don't worry about how much you can do - do your best, each of us is built differently, do as well as you can and don't hurt yourself.
     
  3. javyn

    javyn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,747
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    I have seen some coaches recommend this, but not Rippetoe. He suggests the knees and ass move at the same time.

    At the same time yeah, but the knees shouldn't go forward. Imagine you are standing right in front of a wall when you squat. Or better yet, actually stand in front of a while and squat (w/o bar of course) to get your form down.
     
  4. javyn

    javyn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,747
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    I second the idea of trying with a barbell. it will make it easier to get more weight. don't worry about how much you can do - do your best, each of us is built differently, do as well as you can and don't hurt yourself.
    Yes, I use dumbbells for everything except squatting. If I could get away with DB squatting, I would, but there is just no substitute for a back squat in the rack, nothing even close. Moving to an apartment complex with a free gym with a power rack was the best move I ever made re: exercise.
     
  5. Manton

    Manton Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    41,568
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2002
    Location:
    In Hiding
    I second the idea of trying with a barbell. it will make it easier to get more weight.

    I don't have the equipment to spot the barbell and I am worried about doing barbell squats alone.

    I use the barbell for deadlifts and rows.
     
  6. javyn

    javyn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,747
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    I don't have the equipment to spot the barbell and I am worried about doing barbell squats alone.

    I use the barbell for deadlifts and rows.


    I don't know what your goals are, but if gaining mass is one of them, unfortunately that will mean joining a gym or finding a place with a squat rack you can use. I have tried EVERYTHING to get out of using the rack since I have a bench and powerblock dumbbell set at home, and wanted the convenience of doing all my exercises privately at my house.
     
  7. dcg

    dcg Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,113
    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2007
    Location:
    Philly
    At the same time yeah, but the knees shouldn't go forward. Imagine you are standing right in front of a wall when you squat. Or better yet, actually stand in front of a while and squat (w/o bar of course) to get your form down.
    Well, as was mentioned above they have to go forward somewhat, usually a couple/few inches past the toes. Look at the image on the front cover of SS: [​IMG]
    You have to lean forward to balance yourself --- the barbell needs to be over the center of your foot. The knees should move out to the final positions (somewhere over the toes) by 1/3-1/2 of the way down, and maintain that position to the bottom and up again. There are two reasons for this: 1. You don't induce tendonitis in your groin area. Believe me, this is no fun at all. 2. You recruit the hamstrings more actively, so you train them more, and you can move more weight. If your knees slide forward at the bottom of the squat, you will release tension in the hamstrings, so they cannot be used to help you get up again, and they are not trained as intensely. These two things are covered in SS in more detail. --Andre
    Yes, just read the same thing. Rippetoe recommends getting all forward movement of the knees out of the way as early in the squat as possible.
     
  8. A Y

    A Y Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,592
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Location:
    Southern California
    I don't have the equipment to spot the barbell and I am worried about doing barbell squats alone.

    I use the barbell for deadlifts and rows.


    Those are valid concerns. I'm not sure there is a good substitute for a squat if you don't use a barbell. It sounds like you've plateaued on the dumbbells already.

    --Andre
     
  9. Pennglock

    Pennglock Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,244
    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
    I don't know what your goals are, but if gaining mass is one of them, unfortunately that will mean joining a gym or finding a place with a squat rack you can use.

    If I had Manton's wardrobe ($) this wouldn't be at the top of my priorities!
     
  10. globetrotter

    globetrotter Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    20,605
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Location:
    greater chicago
    I don't have the equipment to spot the barbell and I am worried about doing barbell squats alone.

    I use the barbell for deadlifts and rows.


    perfectly undrestandable, but it does have limitations.
     
  11. globetrotter

    globetrotter Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    20,605
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Location:
    greater chicago
    Yes, I use dumbbells for everything except squatting. If I could get away with DB squatting, I would, but there is just no substitute for a back squat in the rack, nothing even close.

    Moving to an apartment complex with a free gym with a power rack was the best move I ever made re: exercise.


    +1. when traveling I am always looking for gyms with squat racks, it is pretty much the only specific thing that I look for in a gym.
     
  12. javyn

    javyn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,747
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Thanks, dcg but I'm well aware of SS. I just got the videos on squatting and deadlifting the other day, and watched the squatting one last night.

    The book is great, but the videos help seeing it in action.
     
  13. javyn

    javyn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,747
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    +1. when traveling I am always looking for gyms with squat racks, it is pretty much the only specific thing that I look for in a gym.

    Yeah my complex only has one rack, but that's all good because everyone at the gym only seems to work the glamor muscles heh. I've seen the pins in the rack in the exact same position and the same weights I used on the bar from a week earlier when I go to the gym sometimes.

    Everyone looks at me weird too, because I go straight to the rack when I get there, do my 3x5, and leave.
     
  14. Manton

    Manton Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    41,568
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2002
    Location:
    In Hiding
    I am never going to join a gym so if it can't be done at home it won't be done.

    As noted earlier, I don't want to become kunk. I also don't want to become kwilk (no h8 [​IMG]). I just want to A) not die young and B) be able to wear my clothes into old age. That's it.
     
  15. Rambo

    Rambo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    27,312
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2007
    Location:
    I'M IN MIAMI, BITCH
    I'll second everybody's recommendation for squatting with the bar, but for completely different reasons - I don't like the dumbbell squat (assuming you're holding them down by your sides) as I think it creates odd shoulder and upper body angles throughout the movement. At heavy weights its an upper back killer.

    If you're building yourself a home gym Manton, why not mount two large hooks onto the wall and use that as a temporary "rack"?
     
  16. globetrotter

    globetrotter Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    20,605
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Location:
    greater chicago
    actually, as an alternative might I suggest a kettlebell? if you are working out at home, and with the goals you have mentioned, a kettlebell would be an excellent choice.
     
  17. akatsuki

    akatsuki Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,648
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2008
    Location:
    Brooklyn, SF, Tokyo
    Earlier in the thread, someone suggested ass to grass - as a point, I wouldn't suggest necessarily aiming for that on a low bar back squat which is what Rippetoe and most powerlifters use. In a high bar back squat (Olympic squat) where the torso is more vertical, you can get that low without messing up the biomechanics too much.
     
  18. Pilot

    Pilot Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,663
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    ]
    I am never going to join a gym so if it can't be done at home it won't be done. As noted earlier, I don't want to become kunk. I also don't want to become kwilk (no h8 [​IMG]). I just want to A) not die young and B) be able to wear my clothes into old age. That's it.
    Honestly, you aren't just going to blow up into kunk. If you eat reasonably around maintenance you wont really put on much mass at all, you'll just be doing some re-compositioning (made up word?) of your body. edit: Or give Goblet Squats a try
     
  19. javyn

    javyn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,747
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    actually, as an alternative might I suggest a kettlebell? if you are working out at home, and with the goals you have mentioned, a kettlebell would be an excellent choice.
    This, I love my kettlebell. If I'm not mistaken, "ass to grass" means going below parallel, not bouncing your tailbone off the floor. I have been squatting incorrectly for a while now going way too low, thinking lower the better. After I watched Rippetoe ream out a few of his students for doing the same thing, I'm going to try just below parallel next time, although breaking habits is hard to do. Goblet squats look neat, but I don't see how you can hold much weight at all, even less than cleaning the dumbbells to your shoulders, what he's already doing. Probably the best alternative is pistols, bodyweight yes, but you're only using one leg at a time.
     
  20. Manton

    Manton Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    41,568
    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2002
    Location:
    In Hiding
    I am not worrying about becoming kunk. My point is that, since my goal is not to become kunk, a lot of advice about how to do the best squat won't really apply to me. I don't need or want to be a super squatter. I just don't want to be dead, fat or too spindly.
     

Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by