T Nation

Question About Front Squats


#1

Hi guys.

While i back squat, my hips raises before my torso; i was reading some articles about this issue, and realises that is due weak quads, so i change one of my squat days ( i squat 3 times a week) into front squat days, my question is, if i must do the front squats with heavy weight and low reps, say 5-3 reps, or more reps and ligher weight, 8-10 reps, in order to fix my hips raises issue.

THanks for your help.


#2

My dad had the same issue and he’s seen great improvements by using front squats in the 5 rep and under range.


#3

I’ve had the same issue and it’s a work in progress. My problem was lack of engagement in my lats and abs. Doing beltless work and really focusing on getting my upper body tight and elbows under the bar has helped tremendously. One thing I’ve experimented with was using a band to wrap around my upper arms and in front of my chest to force them forward. I do that once every 2-3 sets to remind myself where my elbows should be.


#4

There are many approaches but I would suggest is to go heavier on the front squats, since you’re trying to build leg strength, but also do backsquats with lighter weight and higher reps with perfect form.

If your butt shoots up then you are doing too many reps or using too much weight. Basically do front squats to build strength while practicing back squats with the correct form so you ingrain the proper motor pattern.


#5

Front squats would be a good bet, do you squat high or low bar? You could try doing some high bar paused squats also


#6

[quote]cparker wrote:
Front squats would be a good bet, do you squat high or low bar? You could try doing some high bar paused squats also[/quote]

I squat low bar, but sometimes on the warmup sets y do high bar atg squats.

now that you mention it, i would also include some pause squats. Thanks for the help.


#7

[quote]BCpowder wrote:
There are many approaches but I would suggest is to go heavier on the front squats, since you’re trying to build leg strength, but also do backsquats with lighter weight and higher reps with perfect form.

If your butt shoots up then you are doing too many reps or using too much weight. Basically do front squats to build strength while practicing back squats with the correct form so you ingrain the proper motor pattern.[/quote]

Thanks for the advise.

One question, the back squat with lighe weight and hige reps, must be something permanent on the routine or temporal, i mean, the monday and friday i do 5x5 backsquats, should i change one of this days, to say, 4x10 back squat? every week or how?


#8

I wouldn’t advise dropping the main lifts in favor of assistance work, either do front squats after or on another day (after deadlift for example). Front squats will help with forward lean, but your technique won’t get better by practicing less. Some people can’t help but have some forward lean, usually if you have a short torso and squat low bar.

This isn’t necessarily a technical error, more that it’s using your leverages in the most efficient way. If you are doing a good morning instead of a squat then that’s another story. Try filming yourself from the side and watch the bar path, if it is vertical then you are OK, if it goes forward you have a problem.

If you have access to a safety squat bar I would recommend that over front squats, it will force you to stay upright, you can handle more weight, and the technique is much easier to learn. A cambered bar could also work.

Another strategy you could try is stopping your squat sets when you reach technical failure. Instead of pumping out ugly reps you could cut the set short and do more sets to get the same total volume. Bad reps ingrain bad motor patterns.


#9

[quote]manotas wrote:

[quote]BCpowder wrote:
There are many approaches but I would suggest is to go heavier on the front squats, since you’re trying to build leg strength, but also do backsquats with lighter weight and higher reps with perfect form.

If your butt shoots up then you are doing too many reps or using too much weight. Basically do front squats to build strength while practicing back squats with the correct form so you ingrain the proper motor pattern.[/quote]

Thanks for the advise.

One question, the back squat with lighe weight and hige reps, must be something permanent on the routine or temporal, i mean, the monday and friday i do 5x5 backsquats, should i change one of this days, to say, 4x10 back squat? every week or how?[/quote]

Just keep it light so you can continue to practice your back squat with perfect form. As soon as the form breaks down, you need to stop. However, if you go lighter you should be able to more reps. This is a good way to keep developing your technique as well as help build the muscles you need, as the weak muscles will fatigue first. But again, the more you practice with perfect form the faster the weak points will correct themselves. Once the weakness is corrected and your form improves, then you can start upping the weight. You obviously don’t want to be doing sets of 10 forever if your goal is limit strength. But its not a bad idea for off season or bodybuilding work when you are far from a competition.

If you’re squatting 2x a week, you might try something like:

Day 1
Front squat to heavy triple
Back squat 3-5 sets of 5-10 with good form

Day 2
Back squat to heavy triple with perfect form (if form breaks it’s a miss)
Front squat for 3-5 sets of 4-8 reps


#10

I would suggest up to 10 sets of one to three reps anywhere above 75% of your front squat max. You can play around with pausing in the hole too, although for your issue it may not help as much as for someone who needs to work on speed coming up. You could do them after dead lifting, which is what I used to do, instead of dropping a squat day.