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Thread: ATG Squatting

  1. #1
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    Default ATG Squatting

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    Why are so many people against it on the forum? It only took me about 3 weeks of consistent daily stretching to achieve an ATG squat with no lumbar flexion and even less (2 weeks) time if you squat in 1 inch weightlifting shoes (which I do). The payoff is you can strengthen your muscles over a longer range of motion, never have to worry about depth and have a better stretch reflex.
    Last edited by yellowmamba; 07-22-2013 at 11:08 PM.

  2. #2
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    IIRC, you're a young, skinny volleyball player. The general population, particularly those who are older and fatter, will have to needlessly work much, much harder to achieve "ATG" depth. "ATG" depth can only be achieved by relaxing the hamstrings. So, while it is true that the quadriceps and glutes are trained over a longer range of motion, the hamstrings are not trained to the same degree. "ATG" squats also take a tremendous amount of weight off the bar making them less effective at actually getting strong. I find that people who talk about "ATG" squats all squat to variable depths. "ATG" doesn't mean anything. It is not quantifiable. As for the stretch reflex, perhaps you can get a stronger bounce, but that is because most people who squat "ATG" literally bounce off of their hamstrings colliding with their calves. Not quite the same as making full use of the hamstring muscle's stretch-shortening cycle as taught in the SS style squat.

    In the context of the SS Novice/Intermediate programs, "ATG" squats do not make sense. They do not make sense for competitive powerlifters either. Those two groups make up the majority of the population on this website. That is why "so many people are against them on here". Perhaps they have sensible uses in the context of your program and your goals.

  3. #3
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    I'm all for the LBBS but I do find form creep to be a problem, it's much harder to perform than a HB (atg) squat. I've recently developed another round of anterior hip flexor on my left side, admittedly it was my fault and I'm still trying to regain the strength I've lost by squatting LB.

    For the average gym goer, performing a HB squat would be easier, but it is not the most optimal way to gain strength.

  4. #4
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    I personally do not go ATG, for the (very valid) reasons Tom stated, but I do not aim for just below parallel either. I go as low as I can without relaxing anything. While I may not go be able to go quite as heavy as a barely-legal powerlifting style squat, it trains over a longer ROM without compromising safety. If you truly achieved an ATG squat with no lumbar flexion, you're a rarity, as most people cannot do so.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by PEBCAK View Post
    I personally do not go ATG, for the (very valid) reasons Tom stated, but I do not aim for just below parallel either. I go as low as I can without relaxing anything. While I may not go be able to go quite as heavy as a barely-legal powerlifting style squat, it trains over a longer ROM without compromising safety. If you truly achieved an ATG squat with no lumbar flexion, you're a rarity, as most people cannot do so.
    Only a rarity insofar as most people don't bother with or disdain stretching. I stretched 3 times a day for 3 weeks, and once you achieve the required flexibility, then you only need to really stretch once a day to maintain and more if you want to improve.

    As Tom says, it's much harder if you are obese or older, and its probably low down on the priority lift if you are 6 foot, 45 and 350 pounds.
    Last edited by yellowmamba; 07-23-2013 at 01:28 AM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by yellowmamba View Post
    Only a rarity insofar as most people don't bother with or disdain stretching. I stretched 3 times a day for 3 weeks, and once you achieve the required flexibility, then you only need to really stretch once a day to maintain and more if you want to improve.

    As Tom says, it's much harder if you are obese or older, and its probably low down on the priority lift if you are 6 foot, 45 and 350 pounds.
    I'm 6'5," 240 lbs, can do a full splits, and I can't do a true ATG without letting something slack.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by PEBCAK View Post
    I'm 6'5," 240 lbs, can do a full splits, and I can't do a true ATG without letting something slack.
    Hmm...Maybe you need to try some stretching more specific to the bottom position. I just watched this video and did the stretches multiple times per day.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uwLM5...layer_embedded

  8. #8
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    I posit that the modern day toilets are responsible for the record high obesity levels in current society. If we all still had to shit in a hole, we would have to perform a full body-weight squat to do so. Being ridiculously fat means there is no way you could squat down and hence shit, which is an excellent incentive to lose weight. Unintended consequences.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by yellowmamba View Post
    I posit that the modern day toilets are responsible for the record high obesity levels in current society. If we all still had to shit in a hole, we would have to perform a full body-weight squat to do so. Being ridiculously fat means there is no way you could squat down and hence shit, which is an excellent incentive to lose weight. Unintended consequences.
    I disagree. I think the main contributor is the width of doorways. If standard doorways were 14" wide, there wouldn't be so many fat people.

  10. #10
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    starting strength coach development program
    Atg Is like doing pistols. I can do them but they are completely useless in getting stronger at this point. Low bar with hamstring tension keeps my high mileage knees happy.

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