Barbell squats are one of the three lifts in powerlifting. Questions are about effective technique, variations, and programs for squatting with or without resistance.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

5
votes
2answers
599 views

What can improve external shoulder rotation while squatting?

External shoulder rotation (or lack thereof) is becoming a problem for me as I squat a little heavier. It's preventing me from having a nice low bar and also forcing me to take quite a wide grip. ...
5
votes
1answer
383 views

How to combine running and squating within the week so that stress on the knees is reduced?

After more than a month walking at a fast pace everyday, my body seems to be adapting and now I need to walk at a ridiculously forced high speed in order to feel it sort of challenging. So I want to ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Should I squat ass to grass before adding load?

I've been working on squatting recently, after going through a realization that it is really important to get your hips below your knees when you squat I've been trying to attain a full range of ...
5
votes
1answer
7k views

Excercises to try correct knees pointing inward

Since asking this question quite some time ago I have been on a quest to be able to squat. I quickly managed to solve the ankle issue I was having by stretching daily against objects under my desk at ...
5
votes
1answer
273 views

Rounding of the lower back while doing squats

I've been working with Starting Strength for a while now and although I've been taking lots of notes on form and watching videos wherever I can I can't stop rounding my back. I find that when I'm ...
4
votes
4answers
639 views

Are squats necessary to reduce body weight?

My partner told me that squats are a basic exercise, that it helps to improve the lungs so you should do squats daily to lift huge weights. Is this true? Are squat exercises helpful to reduce our body ...
4
votes
3answers
279 views

Where can I find instructions for doing back squats correctly?

I've looked around but there seems to be a lot of variety out there. Is there a widely accepted "best" set of instructions or video for doing squats correctly?
4
votes
2answers
657 views

Buying barbell / rack

I want to buy a barbell and a squat rack so I can lift at home but looking around there's so many to choose from its overwhelming. I just need to know: Which brands are trusted and recommended? ...
4
votes
2answers
187 views

Slight panic when weightlifting?

I'm new - more specifically I'm about three months into starting strength. Tonight for the first time I felt a slight panic on my squat and my deadlift. Nothing too serious - just thoughts that I ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

What are some good 5x5 programs I can follow?

I'm looking to start a 5x5 program because I've heard that there are great benefits for beginners just starting to get into weight lifting. What are some good programs, and how can I pick the one ...
4
votes
3answers
649 views

Form Check on Squats: Elbow Tension

After performing squats I often feel elbow soreness (or perhaps extreme fatigue). I'd like to see if anyone can offer form corrections that might help reduce the strain, or if my form looks OK, then ...
4
votes
2answers
770 views

My back goes horizontal (forward) when squatting

When squatting, my back is too horizontal (forward). The bar goes forward of my toes. What should I do to correct this? Is it due to not keeping my lumbar tight enough? Also: I haven't checked ...
4
votes
1answer
628 views

Stronglift's Squat method bad for knees?

I have been following Stronglifts 5x5 method for a week now. I am way too overweight: Age: 21yrs, Weight: 95kg, Height: 5ft6in. I started most of the exercises with lower weights than recommended by ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Do the heavy squats in crossfit endurance program help with running performance

I'm about to start training for a 15km trail run and am wondering if the crossfit endurance program is effective. Is it worth getting a gym membership so I can do the heavy squats and deadlifts ...
4
votes
2answers
602 views

Why is it so important to squat to parallel?

According to my understanding, which is based on Mehdi's video explaining how to perform the back squat, the reason why it is so important to squat to parallel is to avoid a muscle imbalance. In the ...
4
votes
2answers
630 views

Are there any dumbbell exercises equivalent to the basic squat?

I'm considering buying a good set of dumbbell weights (pro tip: get them on craigslist) and a bench so that I can work out at home. However, I'm a big fan of the squat, but I don't want to have to ...
4
votes
1answer
590 views

Program that includes both front squats and low-bar back squats

Are there any programs that include both front squats and low-bar back squats? They both seem to have athletic benefits, and it seems like it would be worth my time considering to train both around ...
4
votes
3answers
287 views

Panic when squatting

I do not know if "panic" is the right word: every time I squat, when my stomach get compressed (during the descendent phase), I feel a real uncomfortable feeling. Something like a small panic attack. ...
4
votes
3answers
564 views

Cable Squats vs Smith Machine Squats

Are cable machine squats easier to do than squats on a Smith machine? I'm able to do about 220 pounds on the cables, but I'm doubtful whether I'll be able to replicate the results on a Smith machine. ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Strange mark on shoulders after squatting

I was in the gym yesterday doing a relatively light session which included squatting on the smith machine. It was only about 130kg and I done about 3 sets of 8 reps. I woke up this morning with an ...
3
votes
2answers
942 views

Should I use safety squat bars?

My gym has a safety squat bar, like this one: So far, I've been sticking with the normal bar, but was wondering if there are reasons to should switch over. I'm not currently experiencing any pain ...
3
votes
2answers
353 views

pistol squats: which kind of barbell squat helps the most

I want to train up to do a pistol squat, and am trying to follow the general advice outlined on the Beast Skills Tutorial, but I'm trying to understand which of the 3 major styles of squats (low bar ...
3
votes
2answers
372 views

What can I do to improve my bench press and squat?

I have been working out for a while, my weight is about 150lbs (68kg) and i am about 5'7 (1.70m). I bench press about 135lbs (61kg) and i can squat 250 (113kg). My question is: what kind of exercises ...
3
votes
1answer
378 views

Squat calf machine v/s free weights Squats: Efficiency and knee safety

I recently tried to squat using the squat calf machine and I found it very practical and efficient for when you are training alone without a spotter. I have few questions: What are the main ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

How does the angle of the squat machine affect muscle activation?

I've seen incline, decline, and horizontal squat machines at the gym. Does each one activate different muscles or are they effectively the same?
3
votes
2answers
357 views

Influence of hand position on squatting

I am familiar with two positions to keep the hands when doing body weight squats, either in front of your body with arms straight forward or slightly bent or behind the neck. Does this make a ...
3
votes
1answer
226 views

Squat form: out or down?

What's the right to squat: Focus on driving up and down, or on sticking one's backside out? From what guys at the gym say, and many pictures online, you need to be sticking yourself out. Yet from ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Herniated disc prohibits squats. What are alternative exercises?

I have a herniated disc...I went to doctor and told me that I could still lift weights as long as I don't do squats because of all the pressure that compress at the disc. What is a another ...
3
votes
1answer
466 views

My leg pinches in to my hip when squatting

I'm doing barbell squats as described in Starting Strength. When I get to a certain depth, I feel my thigh bone (femur?) pinching up against the inside of my pelvis, and feel like I can't go any ...
3
votes
3answers
171 views

Squats with the Smith Machine

When I do squats on the smith machine, I start with my legs a few feet out in front of me and go down until I am in a sitting position. I've noticed that some people go down until they are almost ...
3
votes
2answers
90 views

How to integrate box squat to my weekly leg workout

I'm usually free squatting (8x) and leg pressing (4x) For a change, and also to see whether I can improve 1-my hip flexors and 2- the bottom part of my squat, I want to include 4x box squatting, ...
2
votes
3answers
214 views

squats and alignment of knees

Quoting wikipedia.org's article on Squats: Another error where health of the knee joint is concerned is when the knee is not aligned with the direction of the toes. If the knee is not tracking ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Why do front squats hurt my knees?

Every time I do front squats my knees hurt the next day. Well I shouldn't say hurt, but I certainly feel some discomfort in them. I know that without a from check video it would be hard to say what ...
2
votes
2answers
100 views

Barbell Squats: Maintaing correct form

Today finally I did the barbell squats, I called a trainer to check out my form, but turned out he himself didn't know the correct form: his knees were going way forward his toes and he was holding ...
2
votes
2answers
373 views

Building lower body strength using a stationary bike?

I am wondering how effectively a stationary bicycle can be used at building lower-body strength vis-a-vis weight-based exercises like squats and lunges. For instance, if I put a stationary bicycle on ...
2
votes
2answers
412 views

Deadlift relatively low compared to squat. Where am I weak?

My squat is currently 235 (see form check video) but my deadlift is suffering badly. Before I went on a 2 week vacation at work (where my gym is) I was pulling 225 with pretty good form but now I'm ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

pistol squat mechanics

It seems that pistol squats with are easier with your hands in front of you than they are with your hands behind you. What I don't understand is why. Like with a front lever or planche or whatever ...
2
votes
1answer
106 views

Is there anything wrong with doing one-legged bodyweight squats in this way and what can I improve?

The way I heard about one legged squats is to them like this: stand, lower yourself on one leg while the other points forward, then push yourself up. When I try to do this, I don't even get my ...
2
votes
0answers
27 views

Correcting squat form, mild knee pain, numb thumb

Basically started with the low bar squat (following StrongLift 5*5) but being very skinny (179 cm, 58 KG) the bar doesn't rest at the shelf created in scapula as described by Mark Rippetoe in this ...
1
vote
3answers
2k views

Substitute for squats and squat jumps that put less stress on knees

Are there exercises (or sequences of exercises) which work the same muscle groups as regular squats or squat jumps with comparable intensity, but which put less stress on the knee (are safer for the ...
1
vote
2answers
120 views

Benefits of Squatting from bottom position as rest position

So I was just thinking I got a home gym set up, and I can't really approach the bar under a power-rack as of yet...so I just clean it up over my head. I was interested in doing a back squat. But this ...
1
vote
3answers
405 views

Is bouncing when lifting dangerous?

Some books recommend a gentle bounce when bench pressing or squatting. This feels wrong to me. It feels safer and more controlled to come to a complete stop, then start up again. What should I do?
1
vote
1answer
57 views

Do front squats compress the spine?

Just curious I regularly do 225 front squats and was wondering what are the long term effects on the spine with this exercise or any squats for that matter? Since the bar is placed in the front and ...
1
vote
3answers
79 views

Should I add an assistance exercise or drop the weight on my squats to work my adductors?

Now I'm lifting relatively heavy weight in the squat, sometimes on the way up my knees cave in. I've already googled the common causes and found that this can be due to weak hip muscles causing others ...
1
vote
1answer
230 views

should squat weight always be over the heel?

When doing back squats I feel a little unstable coming up. The weight shifts from my heels to the side of my feet and I have to try very hard to concentrate the weight around mid foot, and not let it ...
1
vote
1answer
203 views

Barbell squat breathing problem

Being in a good shape it's sometimes for me hard to breathe (I need to breath more and deeper) after doing barbell squats, especially after long omissions. Almost none of other exercises make me feel ...
1
vote
2answers
80 views

Squat progressions

I am starting a (mainly) body-weight fitness routine and I have found squats to be WAY to easy. There are two progressions I can try that I know of: I can try to work towards pistol squats OR I ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Mild left shoulder pain while squatting low bar

I am on stronglift 5*5 and as the weight is increasing with each workout, squats are getting challenging, while the program is really good, I want to keep doing it and avoid any injuries. The other ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

Next to no glute / hamstring activation when squatting

What to do? Even when squatting without weight, I just feel like the quads are doing 99.8% of the work. Lately I've been having some discomfort while squatting with higher weights. Is there a way to ...
1
vote
2answers
56 views

what is causing knee pain after squats?

For several weeks now, I have noticed a mild pain on my right knee after squats, I am on strong lifts 5*5, 57Kg/179cm/M. My squats weight reached 115 lbs but for the last two sessions have brought it ...