T Nation

Bottoms-Up Front Squat for Density Work

CT - On my squat day I’ve been doing full range front squats during the ramp, going down until my hamstrings press against my calves. Always feels good and balanced, no problems.

But during density work, I drop the weight to 80% of the ramp max and do them bottoms-up from pins, hips starting well below parallel. I struggle to get my balance centered, usually leaning forward on my toes after lift off even though I try hard to keep the weight centered. Today I was only able to get about 19 reps in 7 mins using 80% of my 3RM ramp weight.

Should I be doing these from a slightly higher position? Thank you.

Brought up the same issue in the “Not Using Pins” thread. It didn’t feel quite right doing bottoms-up front squats from pins compared to bottoms-up back squat from pins. I had to use a lot less weight compared to the full front squat (which seemed very odd to be weaker from pins), where as doing bottoms-up back squat was no problem at all, even used more weight than full back squat (which seems the norm for practically every other lift I’ve done from pins). I will say, even tho I used less weight doing fronts from pins that day, my legs were fried for 4-5 days straight!

I took CT’s advice he gave to another poster…

“2. Are full lifts necessary? If your only goal is to gain overall size, probably not. And lifts from pins will get the muscles just as strong as without pins. But the fact is that if you only do lifts from pins, you will only get better at lifts from pins. So if performing at a high level on the full lifts has some importance to you, you’ll have to do full lifts”

Yeah haha my legs are gassed after the bottoms-up front squat. I haven’t tried the back squat from pins in a long time, I much prefer the front squat as my main lift since it keeps my form honest and feels better on my lower back. I get your point though and appreciate the info. Next time I’m going to try one more session from pins but about 2-3" higher or even just above parallel, just to find a sweet spot if I have one. If that doesn’t help, screw the pins :slight_smile: