T Nation

Front Squat Technique


#1

CT,

Do you still recommend performing the front squat by using straps and holding them to create the shoulder shelf or do you think it's better to do it without the straps?


#2

[quote]LordDogwood wrote:
CT,

Do you still recommend performing the front squat by using straps and holding them to create the shoulder shelf or do you think it’s better to do it without the straps?[/quote]

If you can do them using a “clean grip” (like an olympic lifter) with perfect form do it that way, if you can’t then use straps. Do not use the crossed arms grip.


#3

OK thanks CT. I’ll stick with the straps then. I don’t think I have the flexibility to do that without really stretching beforehand and I’m not sure if that would effect wrist stability if I did any kind of pressing after.


#4

[quote]LordDogwood wrote:
OK thanks CT. I’ll stick with the straps then. I don’t think I have the flexibility to do that without really stretching beforehand and I’m not sure if that would effect wrist stability if I did any kind of pressing after.[/quote]

Rich Froning has a ‘loose’ grip that i like to use -not much flexibility needed

type in ‘rich froning front squat’ on youtube or something


#5

Personally, when I first started front squatting over ten years ago, I learned the proper clean rack position in about a week. It’s not a matter of “flexibility” as much as external rotation mobility. TRUST ME, when you got the clean rack down, every other variation just won’t feel as stable, including straps.

I tried straps for the hell of it a few months ago and I just couldn’t get it. The “elbows up” in the clean rack pushes the bar BACK and AGAINST the shoulders/chest where the bar rests keeping it very tight. I feel like the straps and arms crossed variations are much less stable because they don’t drive the bar back as well; from my experience with them, I could see why trainees end up dumping the bar forward because they aren’t forced to drive the elbows UP.

The clean rack also strengthens the upper back and is very good for your shoulders. Finally, if you want a big traps hit, following your front squat work sets do shrugs while in the clean rack. These can and should be done heavy.

So… yeah… watch some mobility wod videos on youtube and work on the rack as often as you can. It will come fast.


#6

[quote]lboro21 wrote:

[quote]LordDogwood wrote:
OK thanks CT. I’ll stick with the straps then. I don’t think I have the flexibility to do that without really stretching beforehand and I’m not sure if that would effect wrist stability if I did any kind of pressing after.[/quote]

Rich Froning has a ‘loose’ grip that i like to use -not much flexibility needed

type in ‘rich froning front squat’ on youtube or something[/quote]

-skip to 2.30 and look at his hands


#7

Any thoughts on the front squat harness? I struggle with barbell FS (rack position and even straps) and have wondered if this would help…but they are kind of expensive and I can’t find any legitimate reviews. Any one use these before?