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Overhead Squats

How would you go about training overhead squats?

I’d like to be able to do 15 OHS with bodyweight. It’s really something you can’t fake and just a small goal I’d enjoy shooting for.

any reccomendations?

15 reps? thats a nice load : D

because the overhead squat, really stress the strength and stability in the core, I suggest you work your core-strength a lot. The flexibility is important as well, do “static” hip-stretches and hamstring stretches.

Do som box squats, for the power, to explode up from " the hole " , its great to use at the overhead squat.

Also, do the overhead squat very much, and do it as heavy as you can.
Trade the “back squat” in your work outs to overhead squats, its really a tremendous exercize. Just beacuse of that the overhead squat "turn the body to one piece- someone told me that once ". I tried the Oh-squat for a couple of weeks, and the benefits of the exercize is great. So do them a lot, instead of your “normal” leg exercizes. Just for a while, and enjoy the results.

[quote]Xen Nova wrote:
How would you go about training overhead squats?
[/quote]

Err… Overhead squat?

Is there any other way?

-RC

Have you done 1 overhead squat at 1/2 bodyweight? Just curious.

i think hes posted before that he has done a bodyweight OH squat…i think

Start with an empty bar. Get used to holding it above your head like a military press. Squat. Add weight. Squat. Add weight.

My question was not meant as a putdown.
15x bodyweight is a lofty goal. I killed myself for two years to get flexible enough to overhead squat.

Everything since has flowed back to that crazy lift. I do sets of thirty with the bar to warm-up for anything. Also, finally really getting that ass to grass flexibility.

I usually do overhead squats after front squats. I powersnatch the bar overhead and overhead squat from there, currently i can do 155lbs for reps at a bodyweight of 205lbs. I usually try to work OHS twice a week.

yea i can overhead squat with my bodyweight… just not 15x

I would work them just like any other squat if you already have the balance and flexibility to overhead squat. The hard part shouldn’t be the leg strength (you really should never see someone struggle to stand up with a snatch so long as they’re balanced properly), but rather the load on the wrists and the shoulders. The best way to train that though seems to me to be to overhead squat.

Looking back that wasn’t very helpful I realize but oh well. Good luck

Collin

I’m a strong believer in training weakpoints. I think that my weakpoint in this goal is the endurance aspect as far as my legs/torso, and the load on my wrists. My shoulder’s are healthy and never bothered that much by OH squats. Stability is obviously and issue so I have to train that as well.

So i’m going to use the following to address those weakpoints:

**1.5x bw Front Squats for 15 reps

**plate wrist curls/extensions

**cuban press (for rotator
cuff/shoulder health)

**1 arm drop snatches

I’ll let you know how it goes, hopefully I should have a video camera by then.

[quote]Xen Nova wrote:
How would you go about training overhead squats?

I’d like to be able to do 15 OHS with bodyweight. It’s really something you can’t fake and just a small goal I’d enjoy shooting for.

any reccomendations?[/quote]

Xen,

I think I remember DJ mentioning that he only goes for this sort of goal (15@BW)once per year, otherwise it is too stressful on the rest of your training.

I started doing them a few months ago and seemed to be naturally good at them ie I could add weight to the bar fairly quickly. A lot of guys seem to say that they struggle with not much more than the bar for a long time. I did them last week after about 6 weeks not doing them and pumped out 3x8 @ 40kg (BW=95kg)as a warm up for power snatches. I was able to complete the sets easily and so will be bumping the weight up a bit in a few days.

I tend to use them more as a warmup exercise and to build flexibility for other movements. I think they are a great “dynamic stretch” for the O-lifts. I wouldn’t use them at the end of the workout unless going very light as there would be a much greater chance of shoulder injury when a bit tired.

Cheers,

Ben

There is a great Coach Davies article in the archives called B2B: Back to Basics that describes a systematic approach to building a bodyweight OH squat.

[quote]Xen Nova wrote:
How would you go about training overhead squats?

I’d like to be able to do 15 OHS with bodyweight. It’s really something you can’t fake and just a small goal I’d enjoy shooting for.

any reccomendations?[/quote]

Overhead Squats require tremendous Strength endurance of the pec minor, subscapularis, supraspinatis, infraspinatis, teres minor-major, latissimus dorsi (inferior border of scapulae and lumbar spine support),cracobrachii and biceps (at point of origin for assistance in shoulder flexion),triceps (long head)and entire cor musculature. Overhead squats also require coordination and sychronization of the entire muscular system. So, with that being said, these are my suggestions:

  1. Assess the flexibility of ankle dorsi flexion, knee flexion, hip extension from a prone position, hip flexion from a supine position, goinometric measurement of pelvic tilt, shoulder flexion, external rotation from 90 degree abduction, cervival goinometric measurement.
  2. Perform flexibility training daily to all and only tight muscles prior to and in between sets of exercise.
  3. Strengthen all muscle groups that are weak opposite to those that are tight.
  4. Break the movement down into components and use those exercies to strengthen those muscle groups directly involved in the overhead squat, i.e., standing barbell military press (medium grip to snatch grip), full front squats, full back squats, wide grip pull-ups or pulldowns.
  5. Perform accessory movements after primary compound movements to target the weak antagonist, synergistic , and postural muscles,i.e., cable exter-internal rotators, cuban presses, deadlift variations, reverse hyperextensions, back extensions, lateral flexion and rotational work for the oblique system.
  6. Use undulating periodization in order to strengthen the muscle fiber through it’s full spectrum of functionalbility, isometric strength, strength-endurance, hypertrophy (optional), maximal strength, strength-speed, and speed-strength (power or explosiveness). Use 2-3 weeks on any given strength phase and 1 week of active rest or very light resistance in order to maximize results and minimize effects of overtraining.
    I hope I offered you some valuable guidance.

well, I’ve been training with a weightlifting team for a few months now, and we do overhead squating all of the time, although not directly. The best way to develop overhead squat strength is to develop the full snatch. Catching the bar at the bottom of the full snatch takes quite a bit of strength and stability. Also, due to the fact that the bar is thrown up, there is no ‘negative’ portion of the lift. Therefore you will be able to handle more weight. For example, I’ve never tried to overhead squat for reps but I frequently full snatch over 100kg for reps in training at a bodyweight of 77kg.

Because of this, I’m sure that I could overhead squat my bodyweight for a few reps, although 15 would be pretty impressive. And although I don’t lower the weight while it’s overhead, I do squat from rock bottom with it over my head while doing snatches.

Another great way to develop the shoulder stability needed to overhead squat is to do shoulder presses from the rock bottom position. To do this movement put the bar on your back like a back squat; squat down to rock bottom; grasp the bar with a snatch “wide” grip; and then press the bar overhead for reps while staying in the rock bottom position. This movement is very tough and requires a lot of stability, I don’t suggest using more than the bar for your first time.

Hope this helps

I fing that using a thumbless grip on the bar to be a lot easier on the wrists. It’s also a good idea to get comfortable ditching the bar, if you go heavy there will be times when you have no choice. OH squats are fun!!!

I found levering with a sledgehammer to help wrist strength to support snatch and OH squats.

Give it a go, I imagine it will help you quite a bit.

You can also try doing a snatch to back squat to press to overhead squat (as a single complex movement) to help strengthen all of the supporting muscles. My strength coach has me doing those every workout.

Regards,

Sensless

[quote]Xen Nova wrote:
I’m a strong believer in training weakpoints. I think that my weakpoint in this goal is the endurance aspect as far as my legs/torso, and the load on my wrists. My shoulder’s are healthy and never bothered that much by OH squats. Stability is obviously and issue so I have to train that as well.

So i’m going to use the following to address those weakpoints:

**1.5x bw Front Squats for 15 reps

**plate wrist curls/extensions

**cuban press (for rotator
cuff/shoulder health)

**1 arm drop snatches

I’ll let you know how it goes, hopefully I should have a video camera by then.[/quote]

[quote]LittleBigMuscles wrote:
well, I’ve been training with a weightlifting team for a few months now, and we do overhead squating all of the time, although not directly. The best way to develop overhead squat strength is to develop the full snatch. Catching the bar at the bottom of the full snatch takes quite a bit of strength and stability. Also, due to the fact that the bar is thrown up, there is no ‘negative’ portion of the lift. Therefore you will be able to handle more weight. For example, I’ve never tried to overhead squat for reps but I frequently full snatch over 100kg for reps in training at a bodyweight of 77kg.

Because of this, I’m sure that I could overhead squat my bodyweight for a few reps, although 15 would be pretty impressive. And although I don’t lower the weight while it’s overhead, I do squat from rock bottom with it over my head while doing snatches.

Another great way to develop the shoulder stability needed to overhead squat is to do shoulder presses from the rock bottom position. To do this movement put the bar on your back like a back squat; squat down to rock bottom; grasp the bar with a snatch “wide” grip; and then press the bar overhead for reps while staying in the rock bottom position. This movement is very tough and requires a lot of stability, I don’t suggest using more than the bar for your first time.

Hope this helps
[/quote]

Nice snatch!

Besides doing OHS squats, full snatches are helpful, and also do the shoulder presses from the deep squat position (do a ATG back squat with the bar in snatch grip but on shoulders, at the bottom of the squat…shoulder press the weight, also you can do “press unders”.

check out this site for demonstrations.
www.exrx.net/Lists/PowerExercises.html

Yes I’ve been levering for about 2 weeks now. It’s amazing how much my wrist strength has shot up.

Thanks for the help gentlemen. I’ve got quite a few things to work on now :smiley:

Check out this site:

http://www.exrx.net/Lists/PowerExercises.html

I definitely like the deep squat overhead press and press under