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Thread: Squat Form Check

  1. #1
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    Default Squat Form Check

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    Hi there,

    I was wondering if I could get advice on my squat form - anything I am doing wrong or could do better.

    I also had some specific questions to ask as well:

    1. Is my back angle good? I try follow the 'master cue' of keeping the bar over my midfoot the whole time, assuming everything else with sort itself out. But I'm not sure if my back angle is too upright. Also is it the case that if we keep the bar over the midfoot there is only one way your squat can move?

    2. I feel like I am straining to hold the bar on my back, like I feel a lot of the weight on my hands even though I am trying to keep a neutral wrist position. I used to do high bar squats, although upon hearing Rippetoe's case for the low bar squat, I switched over. However, it feels a lot harder to carry the bar now. Like with high bar I feel like I could stand for awhile with the weight on my back, however, with low bar I want to rack the weight asap after my sets.

    Video: Squat Form Check - 117.5kg/259lb - BW @ 91kg/200lb - YouTube

    Thanks for any help.

  2. #2
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    You need to lean over much more than you think you need to. Push your butt back towards the wall behind you. Point your nipples at the floor. Get your back angle right and it will fix the strain of the bar in your hands

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Arnold View Post
    You need to lean over much more than you think you need to. Push your butt back towards the wall behind you. Point your nipples at the floor. Get your back angle right and it will fix the strain of the bar in your hands
    Okay, I'll give that a go, thanks. I was just under the impression that if I followed the Master Cue I wouldnt have to think about back angle as it would set my back in a way that anatomically appropriate for me.

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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    Correct me if I misunderstood the post but this is what I gathered or further questions I have:

    1. I shouldnt think about barbell over midfoot since my CCOM isnt the barbell yet at my light weights?
    2. The post says, if I strictly adhere to the barbell over midfoot cue I produce too vertical of a back angle, but doesnt that mean once the weights do start to get heavy such that the CCOM is the barbell, then my barbell will have to travel over my midfoot, so my back angle will more vertical at heavy weights anyways?
    3. Is it a more useful cue than to just think about keeping weight evenly distributed over the sole of the foot? So that the CCOM is always over the midfoot?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by dannyphm View Post
    Correct me if I misunderstood the post but this is what I gathered or further questions I have:

    1. I shouldnt think about barbell over midfoot since my CCOM isnt the barbell yet at my light weights?
    2. The post says, if I strictly adhere to the barbell over midfoot cue I produce too vertical of a back angle, but doesnt that mean once the weights do start to get heavy such that the CCOM is the barbell, then my barbell will have to travel over my midfoot, so my back angle will more vertical at heavy weights anyways?
    3. Is it a more useful cue than to just think about keeping weight evenly distributed over the sole of the foot? So that the CCOM is always over the midfoot?
    1. Correct.
    2. Yes, but that has nothing to do with the way you're squatting now, while you are learning to drive with your hips.
    3. If the CCOM is vertical to the mid-foot, then the weight is evenly distributed over the sole of the shoe.

  7. #7
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    Thank you Mr Rippetoe I appreciate you taking your time to answer. I had two last questions now, if you didn't mind answering:
    1. If my premature adherence to the master cue means that my true CCOM isn't over my midfoot because I have instead forced the barbell over the midfoot, wouldn't that mean I feel through more weight in the toes or heels. Yet from my memory I don't feel that, and feel quite balanced, how would this be explained then?
    2. If our back angle does become more vertical as the weight as the CCOM approaches the barbell, that means hip drives gets weaker with heavier weights, and we end up using our quads more?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rippetoe View Post
    1. Correct.
    2. Yes, but that has nothing to do with the way you're squatting now, while you are learning to drive with your hips.
    3. If the CCOM is vertical to the mid-foot, then the weight is evenly distributed over the sole of the shoe.
    Quote Originally Posted by dannyphm View Post
    Thank you Mr Rippetoe I appreciate you taking your time to answer. I had two last questions now, if you didn't mind answering:
    1. If my premature adherence to the master cue means that my true CCOM isn't over my midfoot because I have instead forced the barbell over the midfoot, wouldn't that mean I feel through more weight in the toes or heels. Yet from my memory I don't feel that, and feel quite balanced, how would this be explained then?
    2. If our back angle does become more vertical as the weight as the CCOM approaches the barbell, that means hip drives gets weaker with heavier weights, and we end up using our quads more?
    1. What you feel may or may not map in your mind to reality. Corrective cues often have you "feeling" something that overcompensates to get you where you need, and then you need to stop that cue when you're dialed in. Have you ever fired a rifle or shot a bow? If you're aiming at the center of the target, and keep hitting high, you need to aim lower. Not because you want to hit where you're aiming, but because you need to hit where you need to. Later, you may be able to adjust your sights, but in the middle of a round of firing, if hits count, then you change point of aim. Corrective cueing works similarly. Over time, the feelings will change, like adjusting the sights on the rifle, but in the moment, you overcorrect.

    2. I see your confusion here. Not your back angle - Rip's #3 is talking about the CCOM being vertical to the foot, in other words, when the CCOM is directly over the center of your foot when viewed from the side. Hip drive is still the main thing.

    As to the muscles you use, you put the body into the right movement pattern, and the appropriate muscles will be used in the proper amounts, especially when it gets heavy. Necessity is what determines that.

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