T Nation

Constructive Criticism Please




There was nothing obvious that stuck out to me... but I have to ask, is that stance your normal one? There are very very few PLers who squat big weights with a stance that narrow but it seems to work okay for you.


Without trying to take sides on a particular style, I still think that anyone shooting their knees forward as far as you do is short changing themselves on achieving their maximum squat. Watch this video(http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=11znKIpge3I) of some of the best raw lifters all with different styles, but none of them let their knees drift much past mid foot... Rubish is the closest to your style (olympic) and has the most drift....He also had the worst squat of the bunch. I think Lilly's form is text book... I would have everyone lifting raw look just like that if I had my way.. just beautiful.


I would agree, but for slightly different reasons. I squat with a very high bar, oly style, and recently widened my stance a few inches and am SO happy I did it. Take a look at your first and second rep especially... out of the hole you'll notice a tiny bit of your hips shooting up, and your chest pitching forward a little bit. This kept happening to me, and at big weights I just felt like my back was being loaded SO much because I kept pitching forward just the tiniest bit out of the bottom of the rep.

Then I figured out... the reason was because I literally could not fit in the hole, because my stance was so narrow. So I was trying to drive my knees forward and keep my hips under me instead of sitting back, but my stance was so narrow that, as I broke parallel, I couldn't fit so my hips would come back and my chest would pitch forward, making the whole movement feel a little disjointed.

I kind of figured this out, widened my stance by maybe 2 inches each foot, and felt absolutely amazing. Instead of loading my back, I was able to actually keep a higher bar position, keep my torso upright, move faster into/out of the hole, AND I felt like I was able to use both my quads and my hips really effectively TOGETHER - while I was narrower, the squat was either mostly quads, or mostly hip if my form broke down.

But other than widening your stance, squats look great. Awesome depth, clearly you have great flexibility


thanks for the advice guys.

I am testing my 1rm next week so i wont chance things for then, but I will try to widen my stance a bit going in to my next program!

I used to be an olympic lifter and then quit and focused on body comp for about 14 months which is why i squat so narrow (wanted to hit the quads as hard as possible).

I plan on doing my first powerlifting comp latter this year so I will work on it.

Thanks again


This is almost identical to my experience, especially the bit about "not being able to 'fit' in the hole" and the bit about using the quads and hips together instead of just quads. Moved my stance out and it helped tremendously.


Knees shooting too far forwards. If you'll look at a lot of great olympic lifters (since you used to be one) you will notice that the strongest of the group in the squat tend to keep their knees from shooting so far forward. I am not going to say anything like "knees shouldn't go past the end of the toes" or something, because clearly there are great squatters of different weight classes where the knees do go past. I will, however, say that you are shooting them too FAR forward. Balance point is too far forwards (i.e. "not sitting back enough", even though there's no real sitting back in an oly style squat at all), for whatever reason whether its mobility (hip mobility or T-spine lacking which might lead to lower back rounding in the hole) or technical habit. At least we know your ankle mobility is strong lol.

Look at some videos of Klokov squatting because he uses a style similar to yours (yes yes I know sorry, I've been on a huge kick lately, but it is valid for this discussion)--you'll notice a slightly wider stance than you and also his balance point is farther back, which you NEED whether you change your stance or not.

What N.K. wrote about "Not fitting into the hole" is a very good description and so is what he notices about your hips shooting a bit. Your knees are shooting 'outside the fit' forward and the tension is lessened in the bottom, which changes mechanics and also the amount of rebound.


Let me add to that that even if you want to squat close for a max, I personally believe that wide stance squatting builds the close squat more than close stance squatting. It builds hip strength better IMO.


I was going to quote Fletch since he was the first one, but it seems every single person in here pretty much told you to widen your stance.

I however will be the first to tell you that it is not necessary for you to. If you squat frequently enough your body will gravitate towards its more natural stance which your close stance seems fine especially since you are a lighter weight class. As long as you can handle the mobility work which it definitely looks like you can, I think a closer stance has its advantages for allowing you to pop out of the hole quicker leaving the majority of your squat in the lock out.

There are many good close stance squatters, so moral of my post. If the close stance feels natural for you stick with it. Your depth looks good, walk out is stable, overall good squatting.

What is your training like?


Btw, just a side note. I used to get obsessed with tweaking my lifting technique the way all these pros were becauae I felt if they were doing so well then obviously it was the best technique. I started moving up a lot more in poundages when I finally started lifting in positions that came more natural, (medium stance squat - closer to close stance than wide stance,a closer than normal grip for bench, and a very close stance toe externally rotated pull). I notice I start missing lifts when I try to hard to fix positions others think I would benifit more from. Just keep kjilling it bro.