T Nation

Can't Squat My Way Out of a Wet Paper Bag

I have been lifting on and off for a few years and recently started taking it seriously,5/3/1 has been working except my squat form and dead-lift are terrible. I did not train my lower body at all really until now because I am an idiot. My hip flexors hurt after any squatting, my hamstrings are tight and with proper form I cant go anywhere near parallel. My dead-lift is just as bad. My question is this, if any of you have struggled with form on these lifts, what helped you the most to master them?

Stretch and use a foam roller, your muscles aren’t used to the strain that squatting and deadlifting puts on your body (read: you’re kinda a puss right now). .

Practice makes permanent, practice it correctly in your warm-up sets, don’t rush it and do the weight you can do right now.

Even if it’s not terribly impressive.

Watching videos on youtube might help also, but what you need is someone who knows what the fuck they’re talking about to watch you in real life.

Or short of that post up a video of yourself doing said lifts and folks on here can do their best to help ya out.

Practice, practice, practice. A video camera helps your awareness when it comes to form and depth.

Thanks maybe I am getting ahead of myself, I will keep working on it, these things take time. I found some mobility and flexibility stuff to work on too.

I avoided squats up until about a month ago, due to a torn quad a few years ago. I just got pain in that area whenever squatting. When i realised actually training it, instead of avoiding it, would cure me, i decided to do it again. I started off with just the bar 4 x 10 , then each workout adding 10 kgs. Always atg, so your body gets used to it. Im upto 110kg x 5 now and no pain. Different example but same principle.

Go light until form is fixed. A video camera or a competent spotter can help you see where exactly your form falls apart. Try bench or box squats from the bottom position focusing on using the hips to propel you out of the “hole”. Goblet squats are a great tool to loosen up the muscles of the hips, use them as a warm up or even as a replacement for barbell squats until you feel confident with the basic squatting motion. Overhead squats with a wooden dowel or other very light stick can help you learn how to keep your back tight and focus on hip drive.

Just to quickly mirror what others have said lowering the weight and putting focus on form was the main factor in improving my lifts when I first started. With consitent practice, all within time. Just take it a session at a time. Also, a video camera and experienced spotter does wonders for technique.

I really need to get some one who knows what they are talking about spotting me but as far as I know I am the only person who squats in my gym. I will try to video tape my form and post it. Thanks for the ideas I didn’t think I would get any responses.

Are there any instructors at your gym? Ask them to show you the proper form in person. Even ask one of the more experienced guys at your gym.

A blog by a European powerlifter helped me learn how to squat. He has several videos on youtube, and several very detailed pages to read. You might want to check out stronglifts.com merely for info on how to squat. I started with just the bar, and am up to over 300 lbs for sets of 5.