Special snowflake routine modification Special snowflake routine modification

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Thread: Special snowflake routine modification

  1. #1
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    Default Special snowflake routine modification

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    In brief, I cannot back squat without injury due to extremely deep hip sockets, confirmed by a recent Xray. With a flat back, my hip angle cannot physically get more acute than about 85 degrees before impingement happens between the femur and the pelvis (FAI). This happens at all stance widths and angles.

    Because the hip angle cannot close, I can only perform a high bar squat with a huge amount of forward knee travel, which causes me pain, and/or with a pronounced back rounding at the bottom, which has already injured me a number of times over the years. The low bar squat is simply impossible. To combat this I've switched to front squats, which also involve forward knee travel, but not quite as much as I have to have in the HBS.

    My question is how to program front squats as a full replacement for back squats? Right now I'm front squatting every other workout, as I figured 3 days a week of front squats might be hard to recover from, and I do two sets of deadlifts instead of one in an attempt to make up for the lack of posterior chain work. The lifts are still going up, but I'm sure this is suboptimal.

    I understand you don't recommend this, and it is not the program, and that snowflakes who "cannot squat" are annoying. But with this xray, I unfortunately must accept I am a snowflake in this matter. I am not willing to undergo bone shaving surgery at this time. I searched the forums but only found, basically, "Just back squat." Any help is appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Aug 2017
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    I would program them 3x5 the same way and realize you will end an NLP quicker, then go to HLM.

    Im no expert but that is what my common sense tells me.

  3. #3
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    Front squats are an inferior lift to a low bar back squat. If you replace the better lift for an inferior lift, you are missing out. That's all there is to it. You don't need permission to do it from anyone here, man. I can't speak to whatever your hip problem is, I'd get some form checks on attempts to correct your low bar squat before throwing it in the garbage completely, though. Or better yet, seek out coaching.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHig View Post
    In brief, I cannot back squat without injury due to extremely deep hip sockets, confirmed by a recent Xray. With a flat back, my hip angle cannot physically get more acute than about 85 degrees before impingement happens between the femur and the pelvis (FAI). This happens at all stance widths and angles.

    Because the hip angle cannot close, I can only perform a high bar squat with a huge amount of forward knee travel, which causes me pain, and/or with a pronounced back rounding at the bottom, which has already injured me a number of times over the years. The low bar squat is simply impossible. To combat this I've switched to front squats, which also involve forward knee travel, but not quite as much as I have to have in the HBS.

    My question is how to program front squats as a full replacement for back squats? Right now I'm front squatting every other workout, as I figured 3 days a week of front squats might be hard to recover from, and I do two sets of deadlifts instead of one in an attempt to make up for the lack of posterior chain work. The lifts are still going up, but I'm sure this is suboptimal.

    I understand you don't recommend this, and it is not the program, and that snowflakes who "cannot squat" are annoying. But with this xray, I unfortunately must accept I am a snowflake in this matter. I am not willing to undergo bone shaving surgery at this time. I searched the forums but only found, basically, "Just back squat." Any help is appreciated.
    I think you should post a video of your low bar squat.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CommanderFun View Post
    Front squats are an inferior lift to a low bar back squat. If you replace the better lift for an inferior lift, you are missing out. That's all there is to it. You don't need permission to do it from anyone here, man. I can't speak to whatever your hip problem is, I'd get some form checks on attempts to correct your low bar squat before throwing it in the garbage completely, though. Or better yet, seek out coaching.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frank_B View Post
    I think you should post a video of your low bar squat.
    Yes, I am aware that front squats are not as good. Unfortunately, I have a piece of bone preventing my hip angle from closing much past 90 degrees. Yes, I am almost at my full range of motion by sitting up straight in a chair. Yes, this is somewhat rare.

    Please let me know if you have any ideas about performing a back squat with a hip crease resembling a right angle. I am unaware of any technique to make this work below parallel. Barring that, I am looking for advice on programming the front squat.


    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Spicka View Post
    I would program them 3x5 the same way and realize you will end an NLP quicker, then go to HLM.

    Im no expert but that is what my common sense tells me.
    Thank you for the reply.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHig View Post
    In brief, I cannot back squat without injury due to extremely deep hip sockets, confirmed by a recent Xray. With a flat back, my hip angle cannot physically get more acute than about 85 degrees before impingement happens between the femur and the pelvis (FAI). This happens at all stance widths and angles.

    Because the hip angle cannot close, I can only perform a high bar squat with a huge amount of forward knee travel, which causes me pain, and/or with a pronounced back rounding at the bottom, which has already injured me a number of times over the years. The low bar squat is simply impossible. To combat this I've switched to front squats, which also involve forward knee travel, but not quite as much as I have to have in the HBS.

    My question is how to program front squats as a full replacement for back squats? Right now I'm front squatting every other workout, as I figured 3 days a week of front squats might be hard to recover from, and I do two sets of deadlifts instead of one in an attempt to make up for the lack of posterior chain work. The lifts are still going up, but I'm sure this is suboptimal.

    I understand you don't recommend this, and it is not the program, and that snowflakes who "cannot squat" are annoying. But with this xray, I unfortunately must accept I am a snowflake in this matter. I am not willing to undergo bone shaving surgery at this time. I searched the forums but only found, basically, "Just back squat." Any help is appreciated.
    Iíd do whatever you can. If you have to front squat then do it, if you canít squat at all then donít do them. Maybe do sgdl for another pulling day or deficit deadlifts to get some leg action in.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHig View Post
    Please let me know if you have any ideas about performing a back squat with a hip crease resembling a right angle.
    Can we see a video of you front squatting?

  8. #8
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    Jul 2019
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigHig View Post
    Please let me know if you have any ideas about performing a back squat with a hip crease resembling a right angle. I am unaware of any technique to make this work below parallel. Barring that, I am looking for advice on programming the front squat.
    You can't. The center of the mass of the bar needs to stay over the middle of the foot. The reason you're hurting your back in the high bar squat is because you're not leaning over. You don't need to lean as much as a low bar, but you still need to lean a bit.

    I'm honestly skeptical of this "diagnosis." This is the sort of thing chiropractors tell people. I'd be willing to bet that there's something wrong with your squat and that you should post a video of one.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank_B View Post
    I'm honestly skeptical of this "diagnosis." This is the sort of thing chiropractors tell people.
    Luckily I have the leg right here, and I can confirm the diagnosis, so you don't need to wonder about it. I cannot pull my knees to my chest or anywhere near, because it very noticeably comes to a hard stop and pinches the front of the hip, where it impinges.

    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewLewis View Post
    Can we see a video of you front squatting?
    Front squat 200lbs - YouTube

    I am gently impinging on the deepest reps here, so this represents the full hip range of motion.

  10. #10
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    Sep 2020
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    starting strength coach development program
    I agree with Frank. My hips impinged awfully for months until I figured out to get my hips back further. Now they feel great.

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