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My Squat is Weak. Help?


#1

So my deadlift increases, my bench increases and my squat 1rm constantly fluctuates between 270-300 for the past 6 months. I’ve tried adding a front squat day, my front squat increases drastically but my back squat will actually go down. I try back squatting twice a week and I feel like I don’t have enough recovery time and my squat will stay the same. I squat once a week and my squat goes down. I don’t do much accessory exercises after my squat session. Maybe RDLs, hip bridges, lunges and I’ve tried good mornings to see if they help my squat but I’ve never gotten anything out of them besides a stiff lower back equating to needing more recovery time. My form is solid, I am 6’2 inches tall and my legs are a bit longer than my torso so my squat stance is a little wide, my knees are just outside my shoulder line. Any closer and I start to lose strength. I was thinking something along the lines of maybe squatting twice a week but every other week replace it with deadlifts instead, maybe try box squats although I haven’t heard good things, trying to add hypertrophy to my legs, or try an eastern bloc/sheiko type program. Like I said, by bench and deadlift go up like nothing I haven’t even been putting that much effort into them but my squat is lagging behind big time. I can deadlift 500 but can barely squat 300


#2

I probably should have mentioned I do more volume work 4-6 sets of 3-5 reps usually never going over 80% of my 1rm. I don’t test my 1rm very often


#3

Whats your bodyweight?

Might need to gain BW. Might need better technique. Might need to focus more on squatting and less on the accessories.

Put a video up that shows the whole squat from front or side. Use a weight that will test you at 5 reps or 3 reps. It’ll give everyone a better idea of what’s going on.


#4

Thanks, I will have to take one my next squat session. I’m 215 lbs. I just don’t understand why my other lifts go up, I don’t many accessories for any of the big lifts. I’ll do 1-2 exercises tops. My squat has always been my weakest lift, before my 2 and a half year hiatus from powerlifting I was squatting 380 and I just can’t seem to regain that strength back.


#5

First of all, it sounds like you are predisposed to suck at squatting if you are 6’2’ with long legs, but combined with long arms you might have some potential in the deadlift. There’s still no reason that you shouldn’t be able to increase your squat though. At your height, a good bodyweight for powerlifting would be like 300+. And a lean 300, not a fat blob.

This sounds like the problem, you think you are training hard but you’re really not. Especially since you are only squatting once a week. I squat almost twice as much as you, I don’t take steroids, and I do significantly more volume than that on my main squat day on top of lifts at 90%+, and I don’t even consider that high volume. You might have recovery issues as well, but if that seems like a hard workout to you with a squat of 270-300 then you really need to build up your work capacity.

Try doing 20-30 minutes of cardio on off days and gradually increase training volume, like maybe 1 set a week until you deload then back up to 1-2 sets ahead of where you started and repeat. Unless you really suck at doing reps it looks like you are really staying far from failure most of the time, you don’t need to fail reps or go for rep maxes but a hard set or two (like RPE 8-9) of 3-5 reps once a week would do you some good, unless your technique is severely lacking.

Also, squat at least twice a week. One day could be light squats before deadlifts, like 3-5 sets of 2-3 reps at about 60%, just to practice your technique. My squat goes nowhere if I don’t squat at least twice a week and many other people have the same issue. If your deadlift is so far ahead of your squat then your quads could probably use some extra work, add leg press or hack squats. I would personally go with high bar squats or SSB squats but it’s probably better to go with something less fatiguing for now until you build up your work capacity.


#6

Thank you for the insight I will definitely take everything into consideration and start experimenting and implementing it. I’m a lean 215 now so I probably do need to gain some extra weight. My deadlift is by far my strongest lift somewhere between 490-505 right now. My cardio is honestly above par, I do jump rope, plyometrics and do sprints occasionally and I’ve done martial arts on and off for years now. I can do really high volume benches and deadlifts (8 sets of 3-5 with 80% 1rm) when I try to do the same with my squat my form breaks down. It may be a mental barrier I need to overcome as well but I feel my lower back start to give out on my last reps of my last set or 2. I also never wear a belt for squats or deadlifts unless I’m testing my 1rm, perhaps I should utilize my belt more often?


#7

OK, that’s a sign that you should limit squat volume per session. If form is breaking down then there isn’t much point in doing more volume because it will just cause you to ingrain bad technique. I suggest squatting twice a week, either do two squat days and one deadlift day or heavy squat and light squat/deadlift. And build up your quads, one way or another.

Yes, you can wear a belt. If you never wear one then it’s unlikely to help on max attempts anyway. And you should test your maxes infrequently, if at all.


#8

Hey buddy this is completely different than what anyone else is telling you but just a thought/suggestion… try working up to a heavy single (1rm) atleast once a week. And mix in some band work also. For either speed reps 50% of your 1rm for like 5x2 or heavy work against the bands working up to a heavy single (1rm).


#9

What the fuck. Why would you tell someone to get up to a “lean 300 ibs+” ? At 6"2. For powerlifting? Yeah thats so possible without steroids. Thats just going to result in op bulking up and getting fat.


#10

Try taking the bar back down to 200/220lb. And doing 3 sets of AMRAP-1. So always leaving 1 rep in the tank after a set. Keep each set to a minimum of 5 reps. Even if this means cutting set one or two a bit short. No, 10, 10, 3.
Then squatting 2x a week add 5lb to the bar each work out. Try and keep your reps up. Like fight like hell for it.
Work out one might be 12, 12, 12
Work out two (+5lb) might be 12, 12, 11
Onwards for 10 work outs / 5 weeks where you’re at 220lb + 50lbs and your still hitting 3 sets of 5-8 reps.
Taking a run up at it will do 3 things.
Form should improve as you get lots more practice and good form is easier with lighter weights
Strength will improve as you’re smashing the squat 2 times a week.
Mentally you’ll bypass your old limits without noticing. For example if you can do 3x12 at 220. And then 3 weeks later you’re able to squeeze out 9, 9, 5 at 250lb, without noticing it you’ll have bypassed your old best.
I used this for my OHP a few years back. I went from 80kg/176lb for 3 reps to 100kg/220lb for 5 reps by dropping the bar back to 50kg and taking a run up. Took me 16 weeks (I had a few setbacks). As for assistance. I’d not. After 3xAMRAP-1 you’re gonna be sore.


#11

You seem to have some issues with reading comprehension. How does “lean 300lbs+” equal “getting fat”? You can interpret it how you want, but the main point is that this guy just doesn’t have great proportions for powerlifting because he is tall and thin. Nobody said he had to dedicate his life to powerlifting.


#12

No, i have no reading comprehension issues. The fact you think he can get to a lean 300 ibs is the issue. You suggested to him that “a good bodyweight for powerlifting at 6"2 is a lean 300” please show me a lean 300ibs 6"2 powerlifter that isnt on any gear;

I was stating that, to get to any sort of 300 ibs he would end up fat without steroids. Like i said above Show me one lifter including anyone on this site who is 6"2 and a lean 300 ibs without steroids . I dont think so…

If he follows that advice hes just going to get fat.

Yeah he can probably get away with adding more mass etc ,more mass helps move more weight as you know but i dont think hes going to be putting on 85 ibs and being lean anytime soon, if ever.


#13

Show me one lifter with any impressive lifts who is 6’2" and weighs just over 200.

Nobody needs to become a competitive powerlifter. If you are tall and have long legs and arms it’s probably not the best sport for you, but you might be naturally suited to something else like basketball Look at someone like Sergey Fedosienko, consistently winning world championships and setting records at maybe 5 feet tall. He’s the opposite, he’s a great powerlifter but he would never make it to the NBA no matter what. The OP can still attain a decent level of strength, but I’m just pointing out the obvious that he would need to be much bigger to reach a competitive level at his height.


#14

Nor was i trying to imply that. Anyways maybe just lead with this.

Instead of this next time.


#15

Dude Larry Wheels is 6"1 and set WORLD records at 242. Yes you can have very impressive lifts WAY south of 300lb at his height.

Yes he cut weight but saying that 300 lean should be the target, when guys his height set world records at way below, does make the advice to get to 300 lean as a ‘good body weight’ a bit ridiculous.


#16

OK, so maybe “close to 300” is more accurate than “300+”. Do you have any idea how much weight Larry cut to make 242? I know he blamed his collapse/injury at the US Open on a massive water cut. But still the fact remains that most guys that height are SHWs, or maybe 308s. Even look at a guy like Mike Tuchscherer, he’s 5’10" and walks around at about 275, claims to be lifetime drug-free and has never failed a test either.


#17

I can tell you one major reason why I wouldn’t want to be anywhere close to 300: sleep apnea and CPAP. Even with low body fat you are still very likely to get sleep apnea, and the treatment (CPAP) involves sleeping with a machine strapped to your face. If that doesn’t suck enough, it also costs thousands of dollars. Apparently at 250 and over it becomes very common.


#18

Bullshit. I just answered my own question:

According to an article titled “Larry “Wheels” Williams Totals 2,275 lbs for New All Time World Record”, he said:
"I have to cut 20-25lbs to make 242, and loose 5-10% of my 1 rep max, while hugely increasing my chance of injury."
So he was walking around at about 270. And he did get injured as a result of cutting weight.


#19

@Pinkylifting @duketheslaya @holysmoke94

I just looked up the optimal height/weight chart on the Sheiko forum, the top of the chart is 186+/- 6cm at 110+kg, and the chart says “Target weights should be at the top of a weight class”. He is 188 cm and 110kg=242lbs, so basically according to Sheiko, the most successful coach in the sport of powerlifting, his ideal weight class would be around 275lbs or 120kg. So I stand corrected, his optimal bodyweight would be in the 270s.

Boris coaches a Dutch lifter named Christophe Rebreyend, he is 6’7". At one point the objective was to increase his bodyweight from 286lbs. to 330. Just to illustrate the sacrifices that may have to be made in order to succeed in this sport.


#20

So, how do you propose Op gains 60 ibs of lean mass?.