T Nation

Low Bar and Smolov


ok, so this week i tried low bar squats and i love them cuz i dont have to use so much back, but is it just me or was it after the fisrt time you did low bar, the next day, did it feel like you got hit by a semi truck? i cant complain though cuz i got a 40 pound pr, and yes my last one was parrallel.

and i have a dumb question, but i dont know what it is so please fill me in cuz im a newbie at this, what is smolov?



Favorite quotes, “You shall squat four times a week, Comrade, whether you like it or not,” and “First, you are going to get unbelievably strong, and second, there will be many moments when you shall wish you had stuck to your stamp collecting.”

There is also Smolov Jr, usually for the bench press, which is a briefer program for one exercise.

Smolov Jr is done as:

Mon: 6 sets of 6 at 70% 1RM
Wed: 7 sets of 5 at 75%
Fri: 8 sets of 4 at 80%
Sat: 10 sets of 3 at 85%

Then the next week is the same but all exercises being somewhat heavier, perhaps 10 lb for example; and the third and last week again the same schedule but with yet again another such weight increase.

Obviously, other training should be kept to a moderated level as the one exercise given the Smolov Jr treatment will take a lot out of you.


With low bar squats it forces me to keep my body tight throughout the set more so than the high bar position. Its probably just as simple as it is something new for you.

Smolov is the shit. Best program out there. I’m a firm believer in it. Here is another link for you: stronglifts.com/how-to-add-100-pounds-to-your-squat-smolov/

If you’re going to do it, the summer is a great time for a high-school/college student if you dont have a lot you have to do.


Unless you have been squatting steadily for at least a couple of years, there is no reason to do the full blown smolov. And if you try, set the 1RM 20kg lower than your 1RM. The workload simply can be too much if you haven’t built up the work capasity.