T Nation

Should I Use a Lower Box for Box Squats?

I’m about 5’8’’ and I thought that my box was the right height for me and no one else has said anything on my other threads. However, it seems like I’m a bit high on my box squats. I’m not sure, but my hip crease might not be parallel to the top of my knee.

My main question is about the box squats, but I know there are other things to chime in on. I need to get tighter on the box, and i need to bring my elbows higher up on my hang cleans, and I probably shouldn’t have as much forward lean on my lunges. Anything else, feel free to let me know.

Tbh, your back is quite rounded even at this height of box squat. While some of that is probably due to not keeping it tight, I’d guess you have some flexibility issues too…?
How much do you feel your glutes in squats?
Keep the box at the same height if not higher until you work on your flexibility/mobility and can keep your back tight in the hole, you don’t want to injure yourself like I did for this exact reason!

Although you didnt ask for advice on the clean, i would focuse on getting your elbows higher and further out in front of you. If you watch any OL’ers clean their elbows “whip” around. I realize you aren’t an OL’er but I think that could add pounds to your clean which is never a bad thing.

I have only really done box squats to a low box and for speed, so I’m probably not the best person to give you advice. Your form is pretty good imo, but i would still do hip flexibility and mobility work. Keep squatting hard my brother and best of luck to you.

Why are you doing box squats ? Are you competing in multi ply gear ?

[quote]PHGN wrote:
Why are you doing box squats ? Are you competing in multi ply gear ?[/quote]

Is that the only reason…?

Because my main goal is to squat 405lbs while staying at between 175-180lbs. And ever since my ACL reconstruction, I’ve liked doing box squats because its easier on my knee. And the fact that it lets me sit back farther helps too.

You need to sit back WAY more.

[quote]Hanley wrote:
PHGN wrote:
Why are you doing box squats ? Are you competing in multi ply gear ?

Is that the only reason…?[/quote]

LOL!!!

[quote]DjSm28 wrote:
I’m about 5’8’’ and I thought that my box was the right height for me and no one else has said anything on my other threads. However, it seems like I’m a bit high on my box squats. I’m not sure, but my hip crease might not be parallel to the top of my knee.

 I think you're box squats look fine. You are just at the acceptable powerlifting depth. You're goal is to hit a parallel or sleightly below parallel raw squat right? I wouldn't lower the box, I once decided to do a training cycle like that, I lowered the box height like four inches below parallel, I of course had to lower the weight significantly, I added some decent pounds to this low box squat and when I went to my normal squats I was allot weaker. I attribute this to the lower load not stimulating the other muscles as much, in particular my quads, and/or hips. So if I were you i'd keep the box height you have now, but be sure to mix in regular squats so as your quads do not get weaker, i have noticed box heights like yours do great at developing strength out of the hole but still do not hit the quads. Keep in mind my experience is based off of a wide raw squat. 

The height is good, but you have to sit back a little more and hold the arch, not just in your lower back, but your upper as well. really arch the shit out of your back and you’ll be able to get back a little more. the reason your knees hurt on regular squats is because you aren’t sitting back as much without the box there. just keep at it. when you think you cant go back any further, stick your ass out a little more.

are u planning on squatting raw or in gear? if you keep squatting to a box, its going to be harder to develop the hamstring strength to stop yourself in the hole when you get rid of the box

[quote]bjjwannabe152 wrote:
are u planning on squatting raw or in gear? if you keep squatting to a box, its going to be harder to develop the hamstring strength to stop yourself in the hole when you get rid of the box[/quote]

I plan to squat raw. I train to try to jump higher and run faster. Right now I’m in a strength phase, but the phase will last til I can squat 405lbs. I know I’ll need to shift to more explosive work and plyos later, but for now, I want to squat 405lbs first.

[quote]bjjwannabe152 wrote:
are u planning on squatting raw or in gear? if you keep squatting to a box, its going to be harder to develop the hamstring strength to stop yourself in the hole when you get rid of the box[/quote]

This is wrong.

So what, pray tell, do box squats strengthen? Certainly not the hams and glutes.

If you are box squatting correctly, you can certainly increase your raw free squat by only box squatting. A friend of mine and fellow T-Nation member has a 530 raw squat a 181 and did next to no free squatting from the time he hit 405 or so to when he hit 530.