T Nation

Can Ankle Mobility Be Improved Much or Is It Genetic?

Once again, nothing really wrong except at the top- no lock out.

Do you have knee pain/tight quads/anterior pelvic tilt?

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If you’re interested in trying one more thing that’s very different to the standard stretch/mobilise approach, this is money.

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Thank you!

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Is back squat form good enough? Should I switch to back squat from my current front squatting for 5/3/1 Beginner program? I like front squatting but I don’t think Wendler allows for replacing back with front squats.

Also, I feel like squat shoes would help.

This is mostly true.

There are squat drills to help you improve your squat, variations that’ll keep you busy for your lifetime.

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Yeah it lokks good. Just keep your feet glued to the floor. The reason you stumbled back was because your toes came off the ground

Should I raise the heels?

For now, I wouldn’t. You can really get a lot of ankle mobility development just by squatting flat-footed/barefoot.

It’s worth giving a try in a few months.

The flat-footed squat you show in the video is a pretty good starting point - good enough that I didn’t even watch the one with raised heels. The mobility to do what you need to do will come with practice. Don’t try to shortcut it by raising your heels to make it easier. Learning to do movements correctly and with significant weights is difficult for most people. The ones that get good at lifting have gotten good because they’ve persevered and kept pushing, despite it being hard to do. If it was easy, we would all be jacked and squatting 1000 lbs as part of our warmups.

In summary, your squat looks fine for now. Keep pushing and don’t use any artificial crutch to make it work. Mobility comes with time.

Wendler’s fine with it. Do whichever aligns with your goals best

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No worries, I hope it helps

This is kind of interesting. I have never linked these to not finishing the rep crisply. You think this leads to dysfunction or the dysfunction leads to the behavior?

I think that the quad/hip flexor tightness cause the anterior pelvic tilt, which limits where one feels like they’re locked out.

Also can cause some knee pain and the closing of the spaces between the vertebrae due to the pelvic tilt.

This is what I learned from my own experience with quad dominance/tightness mess.

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How did you deal with that? As simple as loosening up the hip flexors?

First was hip flexor and quads, kind of hand in hand, next was to loosen up the ITB and get the glutes and hams firing.

All together it got the pelvis and knees aligned well and stabilized. Then once everything was stable came getting it all to work together and (some :joy:) strength.

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How did you loosen your ITB? Mine gets gnarly every so often and I swear there’s no good solution

I’ll search some vids on YouTube for good demonstration, but one was like a step across, and a couple others were hard to describe other than to say “turn yourself into a pretzel”. :joy:

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Haha - no worries. I think @FlatsFarmer showed me the step over one and I do that from time to time with some benefit.

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This works for me every so often:

30-10-30 lunges turn out to be a great exercise, especially if you get pains right at the knee; spending some isometric time down there is a great way to scrub that out and the stretch feels great to boot.

Downward dogs are best calf stretch for me.

I also found success with hip mobility doing a high volume glute bridge (with knees pinching a towel), like 8x8 or so with really short rest periods, followed by Plie squats with a kettlebell, like 15-20 reps or so. Pretty good hip mobility for a long time thereafter. Wasn’t anything else to do but swing and snatch and deadlift and dip.

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IMO lower yourself a 1/2 second slower -will develop more control, you’re bouncing down a little bit