Squat Form Check Squat Form Check

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Thread: Squat Form Check

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2020
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    Default Squat Form Check

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    My last post was deleted for not being low enough, so I dropped the weight and tried again. I'll add more info if desired and this makes it to the forum.

    Squat 135x5 #3

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2020
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    Made it to the forums, so here's some more info:

    I've done some casual weightlifting over the years, but never any serious training. I've just recently started doing low bar squats so I am still trying to figure out bar/grip/back/hip/knee position. Obviously I struggle getting to depth, but I am working on that. Is the bar at the right spot on my back? Are my hands narrow enough? I find if I go any narrower, I can't keep my hands on the bar (you can see some bend in my wrist as I struggle to keep my hands on the bar as is). I also notice my ankles rolling in slightly at the bottom. Is my back angle ok?

    I recently had a back injury, which I wasn't sure if that was related to weightlifting or excitable nieces/nephews or just sleeping funny. I noticed it in my lower back in the spine and the right side. I could feel it most when sitting for extended periods of time or at the bottom of a squat (even a bodyweight squat). Took a week or so off of squatting/deadlifting and it seems to be recovering nicely. I think I'm going to work my way up from 135 again, videoing myself every session to make sure I go deep enough.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
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    (I am not a Starting Strength coach, so I would defer to them if anything I say is incorrect). Initially, I see a few things.
    First, your stance is too wide. Bring each heel in about an inch (maybe a little more).
    Second, These are too low, which causes you to lose all tightness at the bottom and your weight to tip onto your toes, hence your heels coming up at the bottom.
    There are some other issues too, but I think the best cue you could give yourself that could shore up many of them is to stay on the middle of your foot for the entire rep. The descent is a little fast on these, so I would slow it down some. Descend slowly and focus on balance. The goal here is to feel what its like to be over mid foot for the entire rep and, conversely, what it feels like to be on your toes/heels. When I'm warming up, I like to do some really slow pause reps. These really help me cue "balance" into my mind.
    Lastly, some weightlifting shoes are in order. They will help contribute to maintaining your weight over mid foot.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    1,199

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    Narrow your stance and learn how to set your back so it's not wiggling around. You're doing this weird pelvic tuck/butt cheek squeeze thing before each rep and your lumbar spine is moving around. Set your back, big breath and brace, lean over and off you go.
    If you need resources for how to control the back, there's a few on our YouTube channel I think you'd benefit from.

  5. #5
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    Aug 2020
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    Thanks for the feedback, Pete. I'll give that a shot. I've noticed the pelvic tuck at the top as well.

    When you say that my back is wiggling around, do you mean at the top during the pelvic tuck or throughout the entire rep?

  6. #6
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    Aug 2020
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    Thanks for the feedback gto3222. It's really helpful!

    I'll try to bring my stance in a bit (as also recommended by Pete). That being said, the reason it is that wide is so that I can get below parallel. Hopefully shoes with a heel lift will help with that.

    I find it very interesting that these are too low! My last video got rejected without any feedback for being too high and they were maybe an inch or two higher than these. It seems like there is a very narrow window of proper depth.

    I definitely felt my weight moving around on my feet (more towards the inside rather than the front), but I know that my heels do come up a bit at the bottom. Again, I'm hoping that shoes will help with this.

    My two sets before this actually had a three second pause at the bottom to try to stretch at the bottom position in the hopes that my last se would be considered deep enough so that I could get some feedback. I'll definitely do some slower sets and really focus on balance/tightness.

    How can you tell that I was losing tightness at the bottom? It didn't feel any different to me.

    My weightlifting shoes have been ordered! I'm hoping that will help with balance/depth.

  7. #7
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    Aug 2020
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    I focused on getting rid of the pelvic tuck/butt check squeeze at the top and bracing my back as best as possible. Is my back still wiggling around? Does it seem like I'm bracing better now? I take a deep breath at the top and brace as if I'm about to get punched in the gut. I try to hold that through the entire rep.

    I took two videos at the same weight (I don't want to increase the weight and risk messing up my back until the form is looking better), one with a narrower stance and one with a wider stance (my normal). I don't think I got to proper depth with either, but the narrower stance was definitely higher.
    Narrower stance
    Wider stance

    I do think my weight is coming forward a bit as I can feel it in my tibialis anterior muscles (I think that's what it's called, the muscles to the front and outside of the bottom part of my leg). I also notice that my feet are still rolling inwards. I'm hoping that weightlifting shoes (which are coming soon) should let me get to depth and find the right balance.

  8. #8
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    Jun 2014
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisNichols View Post
    Thanks for the feedback, Pete. I'll give that a shot. I've noticed the pelvic tuck at the top as well.

    When you say that my back is wiggling around, do you mean at the top during the pelvic tuck or throughout the entire rep?
    I mean it never actually gets set and stays in place. It's going from over extension to neutral to flexion throughout the rep.

    Please don't post squats that aren't to depth. That's a good way to get the thread smoked. Gotta get to depth or squat with a weight that you can get to depth.
    Last edited by Pete Troupos; 10-12-2020 at 10:01 PM.

  9. #9
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    Aug 2020
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete Troupos View Post
    I mean it never actually gets set and stays in place. It's going from over extension to neutral to flexion throughout the rep.

    Please don't post squats that aren't to depth. That's a good way to get the thread smoked. Gotta get to depth or squat with a weight that you can get to depth.
    Thanks for the specific feedback, Pete. That is much more helpful.

    Iíll stop posting here until I can find some resources to help me squat to depth!

  10. #10
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    Sep 2020
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    starting strength coach development program
    Film yourself and then watch Chase on Instagram. It sucks to find out you aren't at depth but better to fix it now because it's a shitty reset. I know from personal experience.

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