I Could Use Some Advice on My Squat

Hey Chris, you got in here too fast, I was just about to add something I forgot about the last video. You can’t see in the video, but in the second one, my feet are a couple inches wider than the first. As I mentioned, when I try to widen my feet, I lose a couple inches in depth. I can’t even get down there with just the bar. I really need to work on some flexibility, I was just trying it out. The first video is my normal stance.

I think you both are on the same track. It sounds like my quads are the weak link here. If it had been close to a max, then the form wouldn’t be too much of a concern, other than it points to a muscle I need to bring up. It’s just that it even happens in the 85 and below range that shows just how weak that weak point is.

If you can’t hit depth with a wider stance it doesn’t necessarily mean that you lack flexibility. It all depends on the shape of your hip sockets. Generally speaking, the stance that allow the most ROM should be the strongest. Unless your name is Dave Hoff…

Just get everything stronger. Build your quads, but no need to neglect anything else. Your technique doesn’t suck and isn’t an injury risk, plus you are able to squat below parallel. You are doing better than the majority of people posting videos on here.

Awesome video, Knobby. I’m like a textbook example of everything they talked about.

Thanks Chris and Knobby, and Alrightmiami was in there as well.

This is exactly what I was looking for - to make sure my form didn’t absolutely suck and to find out what the weak link could be to make it and my squat better.

I got you on the Hoff reference…

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I don’t think you’re losing tightness. Your spine positioning seems pretty consistent through each lift.

I also don’t think the ‘hips shooting up’ thing is a problem, as long as your core stays tight, which I think it is. This is also something I do sometimes if I don’t remember the right cues.
So, the cue I use is to literally try to push the bar back when I initiate my movement out of the hole. Really focus on pushing your torso more upright earlier in the squat. That in and of itself could ‘fix’ the problem. For me, it’s the absolute first thought I have coming out of the hole. Explosively pushing up and back with my upper body right at the moment I begin my ascension, or even a split second before. Give it a shot and see how it feels.

Good point, flipcollar. It’s definitely an afterthought for me; usually after my hips have risen and I have to think about it. I’ll add that cue in my next squat day and see how it makes a difference in my lighter sets and the couple singles I plan on doing.

What flipcollar said is good advice, you have to forcefully try to extend your hips while trying to push your chest up and not just push with your legs. Your squat might still look the same, but you will at least be lifting more weight.

One thing that I notice in your squat is that your knees keep on moving further forward throughout the whole rep and that might not be good. Instead you could try setting your knees earlier (like 1/2 way down) where you want them to be and then just keep on bending at the hip.

This is a technique that both the Team Juggernaut (Chad Wesley Smith, Max Aita) and Starting Strength (Rippetoe and others) recommend although they talk about it with very different terminology.

Juggernaut guys say: use the knees, get them forward, use the quads etc.
Starting Strength crew says: set the knees early and keep them there.

Both of those ways are good ways to que it, but as others have said your squats look pretty good and there are plenty of lifters taking advantage of their powerful posterior chain, like Mike T. earlier in this thread.

Thanks Jonne,

I’ll have to Google those technique cues and see if I can find some videos. I’m not sure I want to make too many changes at once, but those guys definitely know what they’re talking about, so it may be something to look at.

I had the same problem early on in my training. I agree with what everyone has said. If it gets more pronounced, you technique could be a problem, especially as you get stronger. Quick and dirty fix: lighten the load for a few months, widen the stance slightly, and focus on keeping you elbows under the bar. If you notice, you start bending forward as your elbows go back. Fix this, fix your squat.