Front Squat Grip and bar position

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airhog
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Front Squat Grip and bar position

Post by airhog » Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:20 am

I've decided to add front squats to my workout over the next few weeks. I did them for the first time last night after doing regular squats. I have having a hard time keeping the weight on my shoulders, and I wasn't sure if I had the bar positioned right or not. I was using the crossed arms technique, and trying to let the bar rest on my shoulders as best as I could. The main issue I was having was that I just could not find a good way to grab the bar with my hands that felt natural. Anyone have any advice?

pdellorto
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Post by pdellorto » Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:31 am

As always on O-lifting variations, J. V. Askem had a useful webpage:

http://www.marunde-muscle.com/fitness/a ... squat.html

Does that help any?

KPj
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Post by KPj » Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:56 am

Good link.

My advice would be....

The hands don't actually do much, if anything. The bar really just sits on your shoulders/front delts, the hands really just help stabilise it a little more. Concentrate on keeping your upper back straight and your elbows up. Get an empty bar and try the ’no hands’ front squat as per the article Pete posted. For me, doing this was one of those ’aha, now I get it!’, moments. Do a couple of sets of no hands front squats or until it feels more natural, then start increasing weight (you may want to cross the hands over at this point!). But be patient. Front squats are awkward and difficult to learn, but it’s such a good exercise. In my opinion, it’s an exercise that everyone should do.

It will feel very awkward on your shoulders when you start loading up the weight, but I would just advise you stick with it. When I started learning the front squat, I wasn’t long back from a torn tendon in my shoulder. Back squats were far too painfull on my shoulders, so I had to do front squat. Fronts were also sore, but not in the same way – just felt really uncomfortable. I got used to it though, and it’s one of my favourite exercises now. Front squats followed by snatch grip rack pulls has been one of my favourite combo's for a while. Makes you feel like a new man!

KPj

airhog
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Post by airhog » Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:16 am

pdellorto wrote:As always on O-lifting variations, J. V. Askem had a useful webpage:

http://www.marunde-muscle.com/fitness/a ... squat.html

Does that help any?

Yes it does. Next time I am at the gym, I will try doing some no handed. I have a feeling that it wasnt my hand placement causing me problems, it was everything else!

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Post by pdellorto » Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:30 am

Oh yeah, you can also try Zercher squats:

http://www.straighttothebar.com/2007/05 ... squat.html

Those can be really painful with a bar. I've done them with a sandbag or heavy bag - it just kind of happens in the process of picking one up - but with a bar...ouch, my arms!

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Post by KPj » Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:46 am

airhog wrote: I have a feeling that it wasnt my hand placement causing me problems, it was everything else!
I reckon you've hit the nailin the head here. I think that's what I was trying to say - if you do it properly, you hands shoudn't be an issue, because their involvment is minimal.

Enjoy

KPj

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Post by mattk25 » Fri Jan 09, 2009 10:49 am

I'm going to add Front Squats to my routine next week in place of regular squats. How much difference is there in the amount of weight I should be able to do with front squats compared to regular squats?

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TimD
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Post by TimD » Fri Jan 09, 2009 12:23 pm

This comes up every so often, and it really depends on different variables, but I think it boils down to around 70% very loosely give or take. But the real answer to your question of how much "should" you be doing, is really "It doesn't matter". Who cares about what someone says you "should"be doing in one lift relative to another, especially if you're just starting that movement. Learn it first, light weights, and after that, graduate up to a weight you can control for your worksets. Doesn't matter if it's 50% of your back squat, or 90% of your back squat.
Tim

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