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Box Squats


Can someone explain to me what the difference between box squats and full ATG squats when talking about strength gains on the full squat?? What is the purpose of Box Squats?

When is the right time to use Box Squats?



Box squats are useful for teaching the squat as well as breaking the concentric/eccentric chain.

They teach a lifter to squat back instead of down, and enforces a consistent depth, as you always have to touch the box.

They break the C/E chain, because you pause briefly on the box, then explode upward. The brief pause reduces the power out of the hole caused by the stretch reflex, and forces the muscles to generate the force. When you free squat the theory is that you have the stretch reflex, in addition to the muscular force generated, allowing you to lift more.

edit: Any more experienced lifters please correct me if I'm wrong anywhere.


I consider a box squat to be a more superior exercise than a regular squat... Of course, I'm not just referring to a certain type of box squat, I'm referring to pretty much ANY type of squatting movement where you sit on a box, whether it may be zercher, front, etc. Squatting with a box has great benefits:

-Great depth gauger.
-Breaks the eccentric and concentric chain and requires you to fire your muscles from relaxed state to a tensed state, which will build tremendous "starting strength".
-It keeps you from using your calves as a trampoline for your hamstrings.
-Less dependence with the stretch reflex. (which can be positive or negative depending on your purpose.)

I personally cannot explain its benefits for the competitive PL style squat.




Honestly, i think besides the constant depth and the breaking of the eccentric concentric chain, the biggest thing i get from box squatting is my hip and PC strength. People are always harping on going wide and really emphasizing the "sit-back" portion of the lift, like sitting on a toilet. do come up from this position the hips have to get activated. thats what i get from box squatting. it also allows me quicker recovery allowing me to squat twice a week.


yep all about hip and pc strengthening.




The main purpose of box squats is to take out the momentum you gain from the descent part of the squat(sperating concentric and ecentric movements). When performing a box squat you are forced to use your hips to initiate the second half of the lift. In a way a box squat is similar to a leg curl because after you "pause" on the box you have to pull with your heels in order to get your body back into the slot. In short the box squat is used mostly to increase the strength of the posterior chain.


Just curious, for hte people posting in this thread, what's your best below parallel box squat?


Box Squats allow you to sit back further than a regular or ATG squat, effectively hitting the posterior chain harder.

Then break the eccentric/concentric chain, helping the lifter to build a fast rate of force development and great starting strength


they help build a fast start in the Deadlift. I use the wide stance box squat as the primary exercise to build my Sumo pull. If I stop box squatting, my starting strength off the floor in my Sumo drops off.


Pretty much been said 5,832,209 times in 8,000 different places by Louie Simmons. Emphasizes sitting back to build posterior strength. Also helps to teach gear technique and allows faster recovery time. Louie has said that, if done correctly, a good box squat almost becomes a glorified leg curl.


180 kg for 5 reps at bw 80kg. Why are you curious? You do not have to be the fucking box squatting master to note that box squats increase hip and pc strength. You do realise, that you have made yourself look like a massive penis trying to flame everyone, who gave honest and correct advice to ronaldo.


315 for me



In addition to the reasons given above, box squatting saves your knees. Especially for those that are squatting twice a week and the "light" day seems to end up going pretty heavy, free squatting may leave your knees painful, clicking , and inflamed. Box squatting is a godsend in these cases.

To answer your question, since new year's, I've hit these off a below parallel box-

518 + 300 lbs of chain (suit/briefs)
535 + a set of blue bands and a set of greens (suit/briefs)
405 + 2 sets of blue bands (briefs only)

I think my best vanilla box squat in gym shorts was 545 or 565 last year some time.




Thank you everyone. Mostly good and informational answers.


my best at parallel to maybe an inch above is 455x2
for this cycle im working solely off of a 2 inch below parallel box and my best so far has been 405x2
needless to say, im weak out of the hole and trying to fix it.


I am sorry, what is the PC area ? Not jokig, sorry, i am new to the terminology and the site..


posterior chain