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I've always known that my squat wasn't particularly great but after reading some baseline figures for someone of my experience level (just over 2 years consistent training) I've realised my squat is a serious weak point. Now I know these figures are very loose estimates but what I've seen says a deadlift should be 2x your bodyweight and your squat should be 1.75x bw. I'm ~90kg and my max DL is 200kg which seems good, but my last max squat was 130kg which was a couple weeks ago but based and my weight and numbers during training I have no reason but believe the current figure would be substantially different. That previous 1.75x bw figure says my squat should be closer to 160. It seems even worse when it's only 10kg more than my max bench, which is 120kg. What could cause me to have a decent deadlift but a comparatively weak squat?

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Anthropometry

Having long arms and a short torso will benefit your deadlift. Having long femurs will weaken your squat. If you have all those things in combination, you're very likely to have a deadlift that is disproportionately higher than your squat.

Models like "deadlift 2x bodyweight, squat 1.75x bodyweight" don't take this into account.

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  • Of course leg-specific anthropometrics won't make a difference, that part could be true, but wouldn't longer arms also disadvantage my bench, and that's definitely not a weak point for me?
    – Ethan
    Nov 29, 2023 at 22:43
  • Yes, but bench is also influenced largely by chest shape and pectoral tendon insertion position. Having long femurs and short to average arms could still result in what you're seeing. Nov 29, 2023 at 23:14
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Body proportions is one reason. Another reason could simply be experience.

Deadlifting is essentially just picking stuff off the floor which is something most people have been doing to some extent their entire life. Squatting, in contrast, is not something that's as commonplace; at least in the modern era.

So your starting point for deadlifting was a bit further along than your squat. The deadlift advanced faster because you didn't have to learn as much.

You'll probably find as time progresses that your deadlift will stop advancing as much but your squat will continue to improve, and the gap will start to narrow. Although because of your body proportions, one will always surpass the other.

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