Help - squat twisting Help - squat twisting

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Thread: Help - squat twisting

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2020
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    Default Help - squat twisting

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    Hi all,

    I have a weird problem with my squat that I only discovered recently, and I'm super pissed because A) I'm not sure how long it's been affecting me, and B) I have no idea how to fix it. Basically, I am twisting to the right during the descent - you can see the angle of the bar "tilt" right as I go down, and then "straighten up" as I go back up. This happens with all weights - from the empty bar, to my work sets. And the defect is only visible when videotaping from directly behind me, which is why I didn't catch it earlier.

    Video is below - and yes I know I'm not wearing lifting shoes or a proper training outfit. I normally would be, but my time was limited and I had to get a video done fast while my sister was there to help film me.
    Also, this is clearly not a work set - I added just a little bit of weight to the bar so it wouldn't be empty. As I said before, this twisting issue happens from the empty bar, all the way to my work sets:

    Squat twisting 2021-2-13 - YouTube

    Clearly my proprioceptive abilities are trashy enough that it doesn't "feel" to me like I'm twisting, and so if everything "feels" straight to me (but I know that it's not), what do I do? Should I "preemptively" twist a bit to the left, to try and counteract the twisting to the right?

    Any ideas where the twisting might be coming from? My hips? My shoulders? My trunk?

    Finally, do I need to re-set my work set weights? If there's an easy form fix that can address this, maybe I can just repeat my last work set and verify that I've corrected the twisting. But if the fix is more complex, maybe I need to do a 10% reset and work my way back up. It's too hard for me to tell, and I could really use some help.

    Thanks!

    -skypig

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    You may have a leg-length discrepancy. You would need to go to someone that knows how to check and tell you if it's the shank or the femur that's off. There's a couple articles on the site that cover the subject. Any chance you live near a coach? startingstrength.org It may be worth getting a session with a coach.
    No reason to be pissed though. If it is an LLD there's ways to address it.

  3. #3
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    Nov 2020
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    Thanks Pete - I'm 99% sure it's not a leg length discrepancy (and if it is, it's extremely subtle). My chiropractor has checked me for this, and I've also done the conventional "lie on your back and have people measure" approach, with no visible differences. That being said, since you mentioned it, I can try getting checked again.

    Now that you mentioned LLD, something else occurred to me - could it be my garage floor, which is sloped very slightly downwards to the left? The slope is very slight, but could it be that it's enough to create an appreciable "elevation difference" between my left and right feet that creates a pseudo-LLD situation, which could be causing the squat twist?

    And yes, I am near several SSC's, and it might be time for an appointment...

    -skypig

  4. #4
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    Jun 2014
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    I don't know that the sloped floor would cause that weird twisting at the shoulders. And no scoliosis?
    I'd bring your stance in a hair and get your knees more in line with the feet. Outside of that, I'm reticent to give you any direction about what it could be without seeing you in person. One of the other coaches may see something I don't. I'd get up to see a coach for a session. If you live where I think you do, you have some good ones to choose from.
    And don't squat in Uggs anymore!

  5. #5
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    No scoliosis that I know of, although my chiropractor told me today that the only way to know for sure is to get an X-ray. My chiropractor also measured my leg lengths and said they're equal (checked both femur and tibia length), so I think I can probably rule out leg length discrepancies...

    I trained the squat today, and the twisting issue is still happening, although it might be a bit less obvious now. Below is a video of 4 reps at my last warmup set weight (215 lbs) - normally I wouldn't do 4 reps on my last warmup set, but in this case I figured more reps = more chance of a coach deciphering what's going on:

    Squat 215 lbs rear - YouTube

    Again, the twisting is very slight, but definitely visible. I know my knees are wobbling, and my stance could probably be narrower, but I'm not sure how/if those issues are related to the twisting. Any insights?

    Also, I live in Escondido (near San Diego County) - any SSC's to recommend in (or near) that area, that can do in-person appointments? I'm all ears...I really need help :/.

    Thanks!

    -skypig

  6. #6
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    Yeah, your stance could definitely be narrower.

    I have ways of figuring out where you are, but didn't want to put it out there publicly in case you're wanted or something.
    Make the trip to go up and see Grant or one of his coaches in Orange County at The Strength Co. Nicole Rutherford moved from San Diego, so he and his crew would be the closest.

  7. #7
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    Nov 2020
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    Thanks Pete - done! Scheduled a visit at The Strength Co.

    Fun fact: on the SS Coach Finder, when you mouse over The Strength Co locations, there is a list of linked SSC coach names. On this list, both Grant Broggi and Connor King's names link to Andrew Lewis, which I'm pretty sure is a bug/mistake (the links for Michael and Jeff work properly). Where do I report this? It is probably causing some confusion...

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the heads up.
    Just thought of this, but maybe turn around in the rack for a light set and see if the effect is the same. Then you can rule out the flooring.
    At the end of the day, if it's not causing you pain when you squat or preventing you from steadily adding weight, it may not be that big of a deal.

  9. #9
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    Nov 2015
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    Hey, I like to take screencaps from youtube and maybe draw some lines on them: https://i.snipboard.io/f7Yvb8.jpg

    The fat horizontal line is the youtube scroll bar, ignore that.

    Looked like your hips were a bit more on the right leg at the top, so I took the screen cap, rotated it a bit so that your feet are about equal and drew two lines straight up from your inside of your ankles and yup, you're pretty twisted at the top.

    Your first rep the bar is pretty horizontal at the top. Every rep it seems to be more slanted to the left at the top and looks like you're balancing that out when you hit depth, as at the bottom you seem well centered.

    I guess many things could be causing that, meet up with the coach and go from there, hope this helps.

  10. #10
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    Nov 2020
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    starting strength coach development program
    WOW, thanks Pekka for taking the time to do this - you totally didn't have to spend that extra effort, but I really appreciate that you did . The main thing your diagram shows me is that my stance is definitely too wide - my heels are well outside of my shoulder width. Pete mentioned this above, and the SSC I visited today told me exactly the same thing. Hopefully narrowing my stance will help my upper body and hips be more "centered" relative to my feet, and that will help me fix the twisting problem.

    Thanks again for your extra effort!

    -skypig

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