T Nation

Raw Lifters


For squatting..people who lift raw, are they able to use the wide stance squat that Dave Tate and the people at westside recommend. I'm asking this because their squat suits that they wear allow them to use such a wide stance.

For raw lifters, if I'm training my squat, and all and then want to go for a PR would I use that wide stance that they recommend. I think that raw lifters have to use a closer stance than the wide stance that westside recommends. This is just my thought and I'd like to hear what anyone else has to say about this. And when I say closer stance I mean a stance that is shoulder-width, or a bit wider than shoulder width.


On the elitefts website there is an article about squatting raw. Check it out.


I've had to use a wider stance on back squats, mainly because of flexibility issues, cause I couldn't go ass to grass unless I was pretty wide, but then just kept working my feet. I can have a very narrow stance for front squats though. The wider the stance the more recruitment of hip flexors, I really feel it there after heavy wider stance squats, so probably you should do both. In terms of PRs it depends where you have the most strength. In posterior chain you'll do better in wide, if quads are very strong you'll be stronger in a narrower stance. Probably different for different people, good old it depends.


I've squatted 500 even with a very wide (raw) stance. No freakin' way I could do that with a medium or closer stance. The thing with a wide/raw stance (for me) is how tight I am in the white-light position. My hips and glutes are stretched maximally in my lowest position. It acts as support gear. With a stance any narrower, I don't get that effect until much deeper.


I'm no heavyweight, but I don't use wraps or a belt (never mind a suit), and I use a wide stance.

My knees are really touchy, and always have been. Left one got worse after taking a slapshot at close range while playing goal back when I was a kid. Using a narrow stance for standard squats invariably screws my knees up.

For some reason, though, I can get away with a narrow stance for front squats so long as I'm very thorough in warming up.

For standard squats... I had to get the base of my power rack flattened so it wouldn't interfere with the spread of my feet. (I'm about 6'2"/6'3") I find the trick is in making sure I'm adequately warmed up, that I keep my hips and hams flexible and limber, and that I pay close attention to keeping my body tight and controlled all the way down. Knees and hips come out of it just fine.


The wide stance helps me stay tight throughout.

I use belt and kneewraps for max efforts.

Most of the time just a belt though.


This is pretty interesting. Are you guys wearing flat-soled shoes (Chuck Taylors or something similiar?)..also when you all say wide..how wide do you mean...like bit wider than shoulder width...or wider than that?..the only real problem with me is when i train heavy with the squat for a period of time and do go wide, my hip will start to hurt because all of the tension thats put on it.


For work-out shoes, I head out to Zellers and pick up a cheap pair of river/water socks -- those flimsy things have an insane amount of grip to them, absolutely no padding, and only put me out about ten to fifteen bucks. They're fantastic for squats and DLs.

As for how wide I go... wider than shoulder width. Considerably. Like I said, I had to get the base of my power rack flattened so that the steel tubing wouldn't interfere with my stance -- my toes end up on the base.


We used to have and old school squat rack at my previous gym that curved down and actually had safety bars, I guess you would call them, at the bottom, non adjusting but low enough to go below parallel. The rack width was perfect for me, I'm guessing about three feet wide, I am 6'.

I would put my feet all the way out to against the indside of the rack. This was definetly wide, wearing nikes and a belt I could put up 525 for a double.