T Nation

Feeling Front Squats in Glutes


Ive been doing front squates recently and afterwards my glutes feel shredded; I feel it in my quads too but the DOMS isnt as great. Ive always thought of the front squats as the most quad dominant squat so I feel its wierd im getting sore in my posterior chain. My question is does this indicate that I'm doing something incorrectly or are my glutes just weak and getting up to speed?


This may never change. Since your probably doing front squats for reps under 8, you might never really feel it in your quads. Don't worry about it. It's just the way you are.


It is probably your form. Make sure when you squat down, you are squatting between your legs, rather than sitting back as in a typical powerlifting-style back squat.


Just like some people are quad dominant, you seem to use your glutes a lot. Not a bad problem to have since most people struggle with this. However, if you're looking for more quad development you might have to make a few adjustments. First, make sure your stance isnt too wide, try to stay no wider than shoulder width.

I agree with the previous poster in that you should try not to sit back to far and keep a very vertical trunk angle. You could also try elevating you heels slightly which will put more stress on the quads. Another option would be to use the 1 1/2 method where the extra 1/2 is the top half.

So a rep would look like this...Full front squat...return to start...go halfway down...return to start. That would be one rep. Of course if none of this helps you could always try barbell hack squats, they will fry your quads.

Hope this helps,

Mark Bubeck MS,CSCS,USAW


As far as I'm concerned, you have a GOOD problem where strength is concerned. I wish I had that problem. But if you really want quad development, you may have to use some pre/post fatigue, or other quad exercises to hit them. Personally I wouldn't change my squat form, b/c that's the best problem to have IMHO.


I have found that keeping an upright torso, especially not leaning forward yields greater development of the quads than the posterior chain with the front squat. Try to hold that bar right in against your traps, and keep it high up. Raise those elbows and drive with those heels!

Rack the bar when you're having difficulty not leaning forward, you're basically doing a good morning - (though not quite to the extent of similiarly leaning forward in the back squat) - out of the hole if this is the case.


One thing that happens a lot to me, specially with single leg exercises such as bulgarian squats, lunges etc... is that i feel my quads working a lot during the exercise, but the DOMS is much more in the glutes. It even happens sometimes with back squats but never with front squats.

But if you feel your quads arent getting overloaded, watching if you are using proper technique(as Comarc pointed) and selecting right exercise variations(as mentioned by Bubeck) should do it.


How the FUCK do you break form and lean forward in a front squat without dropping the bar?


Hahaha, seriously you don't actually do front squats do you? Sure, the front squat is safer than the back squat because you won't hold the bar and lean over to such an extent that you run a high risk of herniating a disc. But it is still very, very, very common to see people leaning too far forward with the front squat.


It is pretty common, especially when people are just learning how to front squat and trying to keep the weight on their heels (without much ankle flexibility), for them to arch their back too much and lean too far forward.

The bar won't roll off as long as you keep your elbows high, but people that were taught how to back squat -- i have noticed-- often try to sit BACK and keep their shins vertical, rather than allowing the knees to drift forward over the toes (with control) and sitting between the legs.

To the OP, my suggest is to nail good form before going any heavier.


It's common to see this until people put a significant amount of weight on the bar.


When I do Front Squats, I feel it both in my glutes and quads, but that's just me. Personally, I think everyone is going to feel exercises differently, and whatever is sore I believe is the weak muscle in the chain, but that's just me.


I think the take home point from this thread is that the lifter can - without there being any matter of debate whatsoever - lean too far forward even if the bar does not drop to the floor.

If your torso is not 90 degrees to the floor the entire time you are under the bar then you need to confront the fact that your front squat technique is poor. The most common reasons for this are neglected ankle flexibility and inadequate core strength.


What? Wouldn't that be "rack that bar you're having difficulty leaning forward?"


No...? :\