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Quad Dominance Affecting Low-Bar Squats

I’ve been trying to start doing low bar squats recently after putting lots of effort into stretching and rolling constantly, but the one issue I have is that when I try to go down, I lean way too much forward, and it feels like my quads are taking all the work

My posterior chain is extremely weak, to the point where my hamstrings are half the size of my quads.

This in-turn is affecting my Deadlifts, as every time I do them (got up to 375) I get a super tight feeling in my lower back, yet nothing in my glutes/hams. My DL form is fine, but I cant seem to get my glutes/ham to fire.

What can I do to remedy this

What accessory work are you doing for your posterior chain right now?

Glute bridges (i feel them in my lower back)
Barbell lunges (hard as hell on my right side, using just the bar as weight)

I tried stiff legged deadlifts yesterday, back was tight as fuuu as well

Good Morning should cure what ails you.

What shoes are you wearing?

If you’re feeling glute bridges in your low back you are having some recruitment problems. There may be significant left/right imbalances as well based on your lunge feedback.

You have research and experimentation to do. Find a way to recruit the glutes.

[quote]anonymous_burn wrote:
What shoes are you wearing?[/quote]

I wear chucks, although I have tried barefoot. No improvement. Can’t afford oly shoes atm either.

Going to try good mornings tonight at the gym

[quote]rbaruch wrote:

[quote]anonymous_burn wrote:
What shoes are you wearing?[/quote]

I wear chucks, although I have tried barefoot. No improvement. Can’t afford oly shoes atm either.

Going to try good mornings tonight at the gym[/quote]

Tried good mornings with an empty barbell, felt that my hams/calves were incredibly tight, couldn’t make it to the parallel mark. Gonna work on that flexibility on a day to day basis

Hyperextension against bands have helped my glutes more than anything I have done.

[quote]rbaruch wrote:

[quote]anonymous_burn wrote:
What shoes are you wearing?[/quote]

I wear chucks, although I have tried barefoot. No improvement. Can’t afford oly shoes atm either.

Going to try good mornings tonight at the gym[/quote]

Go bowling under an alias, pay in cash upfront for 2 games. Wear old shoes you don’t care about. On a “beer frame” just jet with the bowling shoes. Boom, now you got some squatting shoes.

Or you could just put a 2 1/2 or a 5# plate under your chucks to see if olympic shoes work for you, but the first way is funner.

If you feel glute bridges in your low back you are doing them wrong.

When bridging put your feet out a little farther so you are forced to push a little with your quads and then clench those abs as tight as possible and then thrust. This will force you to use your glutes and take your low back out of it.

I bet you have tight hip flexors too. Stretch them all the time and strengthen your abs non-stop.

[quote]rbaruch wrote:
I’ve been trying to start doing low bar squats recently after putting lots of effort into stretching and rolling constantly, but the one issue I have is that when I try to go down, I lean way too much forward, and it feels like my quads are taking all the work
[/quote]

Why do you think your forward lean is too much? Some of the best squatters of all time had a good forward lean. Think Coan and Hooper.

Also the lower you place the bar, the more lean will happen. That is natural. You feel your quads working with such a forward lean is a bit odd I think.

[quote]rbaruch wrote:
My posterior chain is extremely weak, to the point where my hamstrings are half the size of my quads.

This in-turn is affecting my Deadlifts, as every time I do them (got up to 375) I get a super tight feeling in my lower back, yet nothing in my glutes/hams. My DL form is fine, but I cant seem to get my glutes/ham to fire.

What can I do to remedy this[/quote]

Well, train the hamstrings and glutes. RDLs, back extensions, GMs.

Heavy KB swings seem to work from all I have heard. Bret Contreras has an articles about them worth checking out.
Also try to work on feeling glute bridges in the right places and do glute-ham raises.
Finally, stretch out your low back, hamstrings, and glutes hard after all of your workouts. Daily stretching for a week or so should alleviate your tightness.

[quote]infinite_shore wrote:

[quote]rbaruch wrote:
I’ve been trying to start doing low bar squats recently after putting lots of effort into stretching and rolling constantly, but the one issue I have is that when I try to go down, I lean way too much forward, and it feels like my quads are taking all the work
[/quote]

Why do you think your forward lean is too much? Some of the best squatters of all time had a good forward lean. Think Coan and Hooper.

Also the lower you place the bar, the more lean will happen. That is natural. You feel your quads working with such a forward lean is a bit odd I think.

[quote]rbaruch wrote:
My posterior chain is extremely weak, to the point where my hamstrings are half the size of my quads.

This in-turn is affecting my Deadlifts, as every time I do them (got up to 375) I get a super tight feeling in my lower back, yet nothing in my glutes/hams. My DL form is fine, but I cant seem to get my glutes/ham to fire.

What can I do to remedy this[/quote]

Well, train the hamstrings and glutes. RDLs, back extensions, GMs.[/quote]

Forward lean as in not my upper torso leaning forward (which is okay for low bar) but my knees going way too far forward ie my quads taking the blunt of the load

There are millions of exercises to do to train your posterior chain. Use all of them, not two of them.

When I do good mornings… I get a nasty stretch in my calves and a not so nasty stretch in my hams

I’m going to guess you should just get stronger.

You may also want to take a look at your mobility. Tightness in one area can cause overcompensation from another. Are foam rolling and streching part of your protocol?

[quote]hawkcapt1912 wrote:
You may also want to take a look at your mobility. Tightness in one area can cause overcompensation from another. Are foam rolling and streching part of your protocol?
[/quote]

This guy is right… And I’ll say this again…

If you feel glute bridges in your low back you are doing them wrong.

When bridging put your feet out a little farther so you are forced to push a little with your quads and then clench those abs as tight as possible and then thrust. This will force you to use your glutes and take your low back out of it.

I bet you have tight hip flexors too. Stretch them all the time and strengthen your abs non-stop.

Better stretch those claves too as you mentioned in your good mornings above.

Thanks. Update: been stretching every day now, hips feel nice and wide and open, just need some good exercises for hamstring glute strength to get to squatting