T Nation

Low Bar Back Squat Form Check


I watched a youtube video of Mark Rippetoe explaining the low bar back squat and tried to use the guidelines he suggested and I wanted to see if I can get some input on how my form looks.

I plan on using the 5/3/1 program 2x/week as I train for a few endurance races, rotating between the main workouts (squat, bench, deadlift, overhead press).



ok, well first thing I would change is not to walk the squat out forwards. It’s much easier to re rack a bar if things start to get scary by walking it forward, not backward. Trying to jump back and land the bar on the hooks is way harder.

See the way your knees wobble? Can be due to a couple of things, most likely a weak glute medius. Try a couple of sets of side lying clams before you squat to activate that muscle (wrap a resistance band around your knees if it’s too easy).

The other thing it doesn’t look like you’re doing (and which can usually fix knee wobble although I can’t really explain why) is to really brace your abs. As the weight gets heavier, this becomes more and more vital. Take a biiiiiiiig breath into your belly (your shoulders shouldn’t lift) then tense your abs like you’re taking a shit. That’ll create core stiffness that’ll keep your lifts strong and spine healthy.

Another thing is your hips are tucking under in the bottom position, so you’re actually squatting a little lower than your flexibility allows. A rock-bottom squat is always the goal but if you can’t get down there without your lower back rounding then don’t do it. So don’t go down quite as far as that in future. An easy way to fix that is to set a box at the lowest point you can squat to without your back rounding (it gets called “butt wink” for some reason) and just lightly touch the box (don’t sit on it) when you squat down then come back up.

One more thing is I don’t really like that you look down like that. Lots of people squat like that without issue but I’m not a fan. I would look a bit more forward.

Hope that helps


Thanks, I’ll take note of those points.