T Nation

HP Mass Lower Body - Half Squat from Pins?



IN your HP Mass program you recommend Bench Press from the Pins as one of the exercises. I was looking through some videos of IBB and saw the Top Half Squat from the Pins and wondered if there was any value in adding that into the HP Mass program for the same reason as the Bench or Shoulder PRess from the pins.


CT ha stated in the past that lifts from pins is fine but they are more stressful on the CNS so monitor how they're going and adjust as needed

maybe 1st 2 weeks off pins and the 3rd week normal?


I actually use CT's squat from pins as an activation exercise. Today this is how I used it:

Set pins in power rack at so bar was at bottom of sternum, then the following weight progression:


Then did back squat and hit an all-time PR using following loading:

425x1 - loose belt
495 - walk out and hold for 3 secs
465x1 - loose belt and loose neoprene knee sleeves, went up pretty easily. I think it's because of using the top half squat from pins- Thibs has mentioned something about disinhibting the Golgi Tendon Organ reflex something or other. All I know is it's the most I've ever squated in my life and was pretty happy. The top half squat from pins has really helped me, thankful to CT for his advice.


Great idea, thank you


that seems like an awful long activation exercise, I thought it was supposed to be on the first 3-4 sets ilke Daryl jumping real quick before safety bar squatting. Did you do those and then jump right into back squats or did you do all of those sets and then do you back squats?


I was thinking the same at first but if your not warmed up any less sets to reach a weight so considerable on your back could be dangerous, how easy was the last single? As long as it went up with speed i think its fine, although i think when thib put it in one of his programs he had the pin activations ramped up to a top set of 3.

Seeing as you hit a PR though you must have felt it worked so can't complain really!


I think also that is ramp to 3 (no grinding)


Yes, it was longer than I normally work an activation exercise - that being said, I am very careful with heavy weights; I probably could have made bigger jumps but I wasn't fatigued by the time I reached max PR attempt. In fact, after hitting that max single, I did my secondary upper press exercise as well (OH Press).

Activation for me in the strictest sense is 3-5 sets of very explosive movement.