T Nation

Milk Crate as Squat Box


Anyone know how much weight a milk crate can hold when used as a squat box? I've heard of them being used before, but I'm a little leary at how sturdy they are



depends on the milk crate i suppose. Pics needed..


Unless you're super weak, expect to have a herniation or worse.

Build one out of 2x4s w/ a plywood top.

You're playing with fire. Its made for milk and not squats. Remember, just b/c people say MILK and SQUATS as the answer for everything doesn't mean you combine them.

Play it safe and get a sturdy squat box. You can surely afford some wood & screws.

Be careful and good luck!


I've sat on a couple before, they kinda just give in. Pretty sure the crate would collapse if you're doing heavy squats.


I used to work at a grocery store, I would sit on a crate but certainly wouldn't use one for box squats. They aren't exactly sturdy. They are made to hold four ~8lb gallons of milk - putting any sort of real weight on that is just a bad idea.


Thank you!

I don't know why people get the idea to use flimsy, think plastic as a replacement for equipment that is typically made of metal ( like EFS) or 2x4s.


I've been using a milk crate for years and never had a problem. Using a 45 pound plate on top is even less of a problem since it distributes the weight off the base and on to the sides. I've had the bottom sink in on a few crates, but the 45 eliminates this problem. The strength of the milk crate is in its sides, not the bottom.

I've even had to dump 405 off my back once, it cracked the wall of the crate, but that's about it. Maybe I'm just using some real sturdy milk crates, but, like I said, I never had an issue.

On the other hand, I'm not a weekly box-squatter and the heaviest I've ever gone is a failed 545 attempt. I also rotate crates since I have more than I can ever use. I think milk crates are fine for an occasional lift and are great for money-saving. But if you plan on box-squatting weekly or more, with several lifters, it might be a good idea to invest in something else.

Kevin, if I remember correctly, you're closing in on 700 pounds. You're getting into the area where I don't know if I'd trust milk crates.


I have squat 605 at 275 off a milk crate.
But it was the strongest milk crate I could find.

just build a box


Haha, thanks Todd, but not quite. I can stand up with 6, but i am suspicious as to my depth, and unable to get anybody who's reliable to check my depth, so that's what this is for. I'd be using the box for the mid 5's, but it's sounding like this might not be such a great idea. I am encouraged tho, by you and the last poster saying you've been able to handle decent weights on it. The 45 on top makes sense, preventing the top from caving in. I may be dumb enough to try it.

EDIT to clarify: Todd, you're correct that in gear I have a shot at 700, right now I'm training raw, possibly adding knee wraps in. I tend to switch back and forth between the two, I see applications for both for strongman


I once had a milk crate break under me when I was using it as a step.


A milk crate was my first squat box. I set a plate on top of it (got the height perfect and made the top more stable. I used it every week for a year or so. I probably never went heavier than 405 though and usually I was just using it for speed work using 225-315 with a set of choked green bands.

It worked OK. But I would recommend building a real box.


I know Newcastle Brown Ale Beer cates easly hold +400lbs plus 200lbs of lifter when doing box squats!

"Milk is for girls, real men drink beer" lol


I just tried the milk crate thingy box squat. It worked just fine.

I made a huge sandwich. It went 45 lbs plate then box and then another 45 lbs plate.

Worked perfect.


how hard is it to nail a couple pieces of wood together to make a box??


As easy as using a milk crate.


And much more sturdy.