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Front Squat Fail

I’m having problems with front squat. Over the course of the set, the bar slips out of position and begins to roll; here’s a video. Sorry, I’m shirtless and it’s kind of grody.

Any advice on WTF I did wrong?

[video]2413[/video]

Maybe the bar is slipping off your sweaty, naked shoulders. Try wearing a t-shirt next time.

Also make sure you are forcing your elbows up at all times.

eh, it happens when I wear a shirt too :X I’ll work on the elbows.

Usually I do wear a shirt when I lift, but sheeeeeet the room was 95+ today.

[quote]paulwhite959 wrote:
eh, it happens when I wear a shirt too :X I’ll work on the elbows.

Usually I do wear a shirt when I lift, but sheeeeeet the room was 95+ today. [/quote]

Where on your shoulders are you putting the bar? It should be as far back as you can get it without strangling yourself. If you watch the video you let your elbows drop when you start to come up; try to keep them up.

Try the clean grip if your wrists can handle it, or the straps grip if they can’t (which is what I plan on doing if I add front squats back in). When you’re coming out of the hole you do lean forward a little bit, which on a back squat is no problem since your back supports the bar and maybe even ideal, but with front squats the weight is obviously in the front so leaning forward will cause the bar to roll.

And yeah a shirt would help, but if it’s still happening its the arms are dropping problem and the slight forward lean coming out of the hole problem.

Ben Bruno wrote a great article about using straps to assist with the front squat. I love this technique!

what fisch said about the leaning forward is prob the biggest problem. it looks like you have a pretty wide stance, bring it in a bit and point your toes out a little. i find it helps you stay more upright. you can still prob do a wide stance but you need to force your knees out cause they are buckling in which is also part of your leaning forward. force them out and open up your hips, i still find a closer stance helps with this

i dont know what type of grip your using, but if you cant use a clean grip, and dont want to do a cross arm grip just stick your arms straight out in front of you or point them up a bit.

p.s. didnt look at the article so i dont know if im repeating again.

I used the wrist straps for a couple of weeks while first learning to front squat. But now I just use the cross arm grip, It works a lot better, for me at least to keep the bar higher, I found myself focusing on pulling at the straps to hold it in place and losing my form while squatting, that’s no good. The hardest part is to keep the elbows up throughout the entire set at the beginning, exactly what @TheRattler said.

Also, I squat wide like that as well with no problems, but I have had the bar slip off my shoulders, and that’s with a shirt on. I just rerack it and try it again.

You could try it with lower weight as well, maybe your upper body isn’t strong enough to hold it in place? IIRC your lats give out after a while of front squatting (I’m pretty sure I read that here if anybody can confirm), so if they aren’t used to holding the weight in place, might cause your arms to drop and thus allowing the bar to roll forward. Also your rotator cuff muscles might also not be up to par in handling the weights. This one I’m SURE I read here, an article by Lee Boyce “Fix your Front Squats”. Try getting them used to Front Squatting with lighter weights.

Here’s the Lee Boyce Article http://www.T-Nation.com/free_online_article/most_recent/fix_your_front_squat

Good luck!

The bar needs to be resting against your throat, like uncomfortably so. When I first started front squatting I found the way the bar rested on my shoulders and against my throat extremely uncomfortable. I got used to it over time so it doesn’t bother me now. I also will wrap an old thread bare towel around the bar to prevent it from slipping during the summer time.

I’d also try less weight and work on form. Your torso should be upright enough that you could hold your arms pretty much straight out in front of you if you wanted. At least that’s my experience with it. Good luck.

Use the wrist straps method, chalk, and a t-shirt. Point the elbows up, look slightly upward. If it’s slipping off it’s a technique issue. If you’re dropping it that’s different.

[quote]ryno76 wrote:
The bar needs to be resting against your throat, like uncomfortably so. When I first started front squatting I found the way the bar rested on my shoulders and against my throat extremely uncomfortable. I got used to it over time so it doesn’t bother me now.[/quote]

x2

That’s not a very widely used grip. Clean grip, crossed arms or straps, elbows up, eyes up, push it into your throat just shy of making you pass out.

Also to clarify, since I didn’t put it in my previous post, I use crossed arms. I personally lack the flexibility to maintain a good clean grip. For me, at least, using the crossed arms set up lets me focus on my legs and not worry about holding the bar.

You can see which option works best for you, but in the end it will be the one that lets you focus on the actual squatting and not your grip.

[quote]The Rattler wrote:

[quote]paulwhite959 wrote:
eh, it happens when I wear a shirt too :X I’ll work on the elbows.

Usually I do wear a shirt when I lift, but sheeeeeet the room was 95+ today. [/quote]

Where on your shoulders are you putting the bar? It should be as far back as you can get it without strangling yourself. If you watch the video you let your elbows drop when you start to come up; try to keep them up. [/quote]

I find that when the bar is choking me slightly that its right on the spot I need it to be.

:slight_smile:

I found that it just takes practice really. I added these into the mix about 3 or 4 times for about 6-8 weeks at a time before I finally got them right.

Most of that time was spent trying to get the bar as far back on my shoulders as possible, so that the bar is practically choking me and making it very difficult to get a full breath (or any decent sized breath at all). It wasn’t very comfortable and the bar would roll forwards.

As soon as I brought the bar out so that it was resting more on the middle of my delts, it was way more comfortable and didn’t roll forwards at all - unless I start leaning forwards, and even then I can still hold it better than when it was really far back touching my throat. My setup is walk up to bar, rest it somewhere comfortable on my shoulders, pick the bar up… hard to describe it beyond that, but what others have said is useful : i.e. elbows up, sit back

You just have to play around and find what works for you, it takes time for lifts like these in my experience.