Hi Coach, I read that the TBDL/Dead squat and the Power Clean are two of the most athletic lower body dominant movements.
My question is, can I use these 2 movements for the russian strength skill workout without any squatting? I know the Dead Squat uses a lot of quad strength, but I was wondering if you don’t train the squat, will you plateau quickly on the power clean?
Honestly the squat isn’t THAT important for the power clean. I train a lot of crossfit athletes and the strongest on the power clean do not tend to be the strongest squatters, they are often the strongest deadlifters. Don’t get me wrong, if you are weak on the back squat, you wont power clean very much. But it is not the most important factor IMHO.
The power clean requires lower body strength mostly from a 100-110 degrees knee angle up to full extension, and most importantly it requires you to be able to display that strength quickly over that range of motion.
So what IS important is to have a strong lower body overall… it doesn’t really matter which exercie you use to get your lower body stronger.
I personally find that the movement that has the greatest carryover to my power clean is the super heavy half squat from pins, starting at a 100 or 110 degrees knee angle, which is the angle where the quads must drive up to create barbell momentum.
Before that (from the floor until the bar reaches the knees and the knees are about 110 degrees) the deadlift is actually a more important movement.
However understand that if you do not practice a movement, you will likely lose your edge on it. But if all the muscles involved remain strong you should regain your performance quickly after resuming practice of the lift.
The Deadsquat CAN replace a squat, at least in the short term. BUT it has to be done like a squat. Which means starting with the hips low, the torso upright and the chest high, and driving with the legs, not pulling with the back. From the floor until your hands pass the knees, the torso angle should remain the same.