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Help With Squat Flexibility, Back Exercises

I have been lifting weights for almost 2 years (with a few months break) and just recently noticed some trouble with my squat. Whenever I try to go down, I seem to lean forward a lot and can barely get to parallel.

I’ve read it could be ham or hip flexibility problems, but I don’t know how to fix these. Is there a good way to improve my squat flexibility?

Also, I have never done any back work. (Other then what squats would do for my back) Can someone inform me as to what a good back exercise to add to my routine would be?

Deadlifts will better target your posterior chain as it is a hip-dominant exercise. I wont say too much because other, more experienced members will chime in.

[quote]fisch wrote:
I have been lifting weights for almost 2 years (with a few months break) and just recently noticed some trouble with my squat. Whenever I try to go down, I seem to lean forward a lot and can barely get to parallel.

I’ve read it could be ham or hip flexibility problems, but I don’t know how to fix these. Is there a good way to improve my squat flexibility?

Also, I have never done any back work. (Other then what squats would do for my back) Can someone inform me as to what a good back exercise to add to my routine would be?[/quote]

So… what have you been doing for the last two years?

It sounds like the problem with your squat is hip flexibility. The fastest way (IME) to fix it is to… squat. Sit down as far as you can, and hold the low position. When it becomes easy, go lower. Repeat until you’ve reached the nadir of the ROM and come back up. Try this unweighted first, and then use the bar with some light weight on it.

Deadlifts are good back work, as Njrsumc said above. If you don’t have the flexibility to do the full ROM, try rack pulls while working on your flexibility.

Why did you ask for a back exercise?

I’m a big chinup/pullup advocate. If you’re not doing these, you should be. I have heard them called the “squats of upper body exercises” and I agree.

Otep is right, practice squatting. Keep the weight on your heels and your chest up and out. Don’t use any weight, and try to relax at the bottom. This will…wait, better yet, where the hell is the link to that vid… http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6529481301858251744&hl=en

Do what the man says.

Yeah. Bodyweight squats where you stall for a few seconds at the bottom.

http://www.T-Nation.com/article/bodybuilding/the_thirdworld_squat&cr=

regarding squat flexibity, read both of these articles.

Thanks for the links above, they explained a lot for me. To Otep: I wanted a back exercise because I have always done bench, squats, and other stuff that has no real back strengthing (squats help somewhat) and am worrying that I will have a bad balance and seriously hurt my back one day because of it.

In that case, add deadlifts, too. (another exercise you should have been doing all along)

Definitely start doing Wall Squats.

Dan John on squating:
http://thefitcast.com/?p=108

I really recommend the goblet squat after you get the bodyweight stuff down. Otep is right: squat squat and squat some more. When I was trying to nail down my form, I would stand up from doing whatever i was doing and do a set of bodyweight squats whenever I felt like it.

Chins and pull ups will be your friends as far as back exercises.

if yer leaning forward in the squat its back strength… I never had a problem with a forward lean until i started putting on more weight. Then suddenly, i magically became less ‘flexible’ and had to fight a forward lean.

The reason why practicing squatting works is because yer strengthening the muscles involved through constant use.

Flexibility i think is only a problem near the bottom when u just tighten up and your muscles ‘wont go’ any further without forcing them. So flexibility will get u a few more inches down at the bottom but its not gonna help your lean.

[quote]JayPierce wrote:
Also, I have never done any back work. (Other then what squats would do for my back) Can someone inform me as to what a good back exercise to add to my routine would be?

I’m a big chinup/pullup advocate. If you’re not doing these, you should be. I have heard them called the “squats of upper body exercises” and I agree.

Otep is right, practice squatting. Keep the weight on your heels and your chest up and out. Don’t use any weight, and try to relax at the bottom. This will…wait, better yet, where the hell is the link to that vid… http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6529481301858251744&hl=en

Do what the man says.
[/quote]

Thank you! I just watched that video and it has fixed my squat. I couldn’t get bellow parallel before, even with just the bar, but can get right down with the goblet squat and potato sack squat. I’m actually looking forward to trying the squat today :slight_smile:

Solid gold.

Don’t thank me, I just spread the word. Drop Danny a line and thank him. Glad it helped.