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Front Squat Relevance to Rear Squat


Hey guys,

A friend and myself have been discussing the front squat and it's translation into rear squat for a while. With quite minimal research I found that the front squat is a really good accessory in terms of allowing a different type of, or otherwise different emphasis on quad/core activation more stabilizers and is especially good for olympic lifting but haven't been able to find too much on the relevance to developing a strong(er) back squat.

For reference my friend currently holds a 160kg/352lbs front squat and a current highest recorded 1RM of 230kg/500lbs squat, while my squat is about the same and do not front squat (mainly because it hurts/never got into it etc etc (too much of a bitch :'()).

I was wondering if the front squat has much carry over to the rear squat as an accessory you would use as a squat variation/accessory in terms of overall strength.

For reference the friend in question is also about 10kgs lighter than me, we are about the same height at ~182-ish cm/6 ft.

I know the thread sounds like it doesn't make too much sense but any information you can throw at me about the importance of front squat would be greatly appreciated.



A lot of people swear by it and im sure it has a very good carryover since its forcing you to stay upright and use your quads more when is alot of peoples weak areas. But I've just never really done them frequently enough to see any kind of result. It all matters what you think helps you personally, if you think its helping drive up your back squat and is in line with your goals, just keep doing it. Don't worry if someone on the internet links you to a study saying you should never front squat.

Powerlifting or strength training in general is a hands on thing. Theres nothing wrong with the pursuit of information or knowledge, but I know all kinds of people that can tell you the intricacies of ankle flexion in a squat or other dumb shit but they cant bench 300lbs.


I sometimes do a training period where I only front squat (no back squat). When I go back to back squatting, it has always gone up. This really has to do with the fact that I fail backsquats by getting too much forward lean. When I go back to back squatting, I always feel like I can keep my upper back much tighter and avoid forward lean.


I found that, after buying a safety squat bar, my need to ever perform front squats really kind of stopped. I'll occasionally rotate them into my training for the sake of variety, or use them as part of a burnout set (go to max reps on front squats, then do max reps of squats with no rest in between), but I haven't really needed them to increase my squat.


Doesn't the SSB essentially mimic the front squat?

We use the SSB bar regularly, and I believe I've benefited b/c my arch tends to go as I try to hit new 1-3RM's.


I can't say that I have ever trained the front squat enough to know if it made a huge difference, but I can 2nd the SSB and I do not even do front squats anymore.


Here's my experience. When my sticking point was real low (coming out of the hole), I had to strengthen my posterior chain the most. The thing that helped me the most was stiff-leg deadlifts, especially from a deficit. After doing these for a couple years and getting stronger out of the hole, I developed (or found) a new sticking point about a third of the way up. I attributed this to weak(er) quads. A steady diet of front squats has helped this.

So, short answer is, "it depends on your weak point".

After reading a some of the other posts, I believe I'll dust off my SSB and use that for a while. I really do dislike front squats.


Thanks for the informative replies, appreciate the feedback.


I use fron squats with a two to five second pause in the hole both as a squat and deadlift assistance exercise. I start at 75% of my front squat max (which is about 75% of my squat max) and then increase steadily through the cycle. I've used 10 singles, five doubles and I'm currently working with six sets of five to one ranging between 70 an 80%.

For squats, it helps me stop relying on the stretch reflex to come out of the hole and for dead lifts it forces my whole back to get strong in terms of keeping straight.


I have the same view with front squats and helping deadlifts/squats, but once question I have is when you're paused in the hole, are you sitting at the very bottom or a tiny bit above? Because I've found if I sit at the very bottom then actually most of the tension seems to be taken up by my joints/ligaments which obviously isn't ideal, although it does still make coming out the hole harder with the the reduced/removed stretch reflex


As far as I'm aware I sit as deep as I can. I don't feel any discomfort in my hips or knees at all. I do wear knee sleeves (Eleiko) and Nike Romaleo IIs so that'll take a bunch of stress off my knees and ankles. Also, having trained and competed for kettlebell sport for over two years the connective tissue in my hips, knees and ankles has got really strong, not to mention I got used to staying under load for time.


I was doing exactly this for a period of time in order to help my deadlift out in the way you describe... Thanks for the reminder, I should re-incorporate this into my training!