T Nation

Smolov - Front Squat


I have completed smolov twice for squat, and two times only base meso cycle for frontsquat.

This time I have planned to complete the entire smolov for the frontsquat.

This is the last workout in the first three week period with a total of 12 front squat sessions:

I am coming back from a serious lower back injury that put me out of serious training for four months. I am still holding back on the deadlift, increasing it slowly by 5-10kilos a week to get back to my old level.

I am still weaker than i was at my best, but my goal now is to reach a 200kg raw (no belt, no kneewraps) frontsquat at approx 100kg+ body weight (100.5kg at the moment). According to my plan I will reach 180kg before christmas, and 200kg (440lbs) in the spring next year.

I have previously done 190kg frontsquat, but that was with a belt and kneewraps (gives me 20kg extra).

I am just tremendously proud to be back in the iron game again. I feared that the injury would put a complete stop to my heavy lifting, and was severly depressed, because it is what i truly love and enjoy.

So in spirit of great lifting and love for the iron-game i post this, and hope that it can be of inspiration.

Never give up!


That's simply awesome. Great come back!!

200 by Christmas would jsut be sick. And I would be forced to hate you I'm afraid....

What's your back squat numbers like? (I know you probably haven't done em recently cos you're injured...) and do you see a carryover from a bigger front squat to a bigger back squat?


Great work and comeback!

This is encouraging for me since I am dealing with an injury that has put me out for several weeks already. You're right, it's very depressing as I know that everyday all of my gains that I had in the past are gone.

That's right...we should never give up.


I Saw your videos very inspiring but you still have form issues with that weight. Gains are never gone. Remember that once you own a weight it is owned forever. Just ease back into the swing of things.

If you can rig up a reverse hyper app it would be invaluable for training your lower back.


I will not reach 200kg by christmas, but I think 180kg raw front squat is within my reach! i have done 250kg in ipf powerlifting competition, but i think i had about 20kg more in me when i got injuried.

here is the 250kg squat:

I have not done back squats for a while, because i was injuried doing backsquats, and want to ease into things slowly. I have done some box-squatting, but not very heavy. I tend to lose my arch in the bottom of the squat and then sheering forces are working on my lower back, and that is not very good. So there are some things I have to work on.

The carryover from bigger frontsquats to bigger backsquat and bigger deadlifts are for me very obvious. At the nationals this year, I increased my backsquat and my deadlift, with 10kg and 12.5kg, i had only done frontsquats in the period leading up to the nationals. Frontsquats are now my number 1 leg exercise.

The strength that you had when you got injuried I think will come more easily back than if you never had had this strength. It is easier to reach old levels, than to go into new territory.

I have access to a reverse hyper app occasionally, but that gym is too far away. But thanks for the tip - it is an excellent exercise!

Regarding the form, when lifting near maximal weights, form always suffer a bit. The workout i videotaped was a very hard workout with very heavy weights for me at the time.

Here is frontsquats done with 120kg - not a heavy weight - but I think the form is pretty good. The heavier the weight gets, naturally the more the form suffers. :slightly_smiling:

I always try myt best, and if you have any suggestions to improve my form i more than welcome it!

Thank you for all the good comments and ecouragement, very motivating.

If there is one thing i would have done differently it would be to still exercise my legs, even with a lower back injury.

Like this with hip belt squats:


The competition video was really good. Definately looked good for lots more on the squat anyway.

It's interesting that the front squat carrys over to your deadlift, I was expecting you to pull conventional but you're a sumo!! Might be something for me to think about too so...

I've front squatted 130 for 3 in just a belt and have a best IPF squat of 220kg (with about 10kg in the tank) so I'm guessing if I brought my front squat up the comp squat should come along too...??

Also are you pulling in a v-type squatter?? do you get much carryover? I've one on the way and was wondering how much I should be aiming to get out of it.

Once again, inspiring stuff and good luck hitting that big front squat!


I tought I could have done at least 260kg on that day, and i brought up my front squat even more after that meet, and think i could have done 270kg.

Sumo if more quad dominant, and you are using the back less compared to conventional deadlift. I will never go conventional.

It definately would!

Yes, pulling in a v-type squatter. My deadlift is just as strong as my squat. I think it is a Metal Viking Squatter v-type. I use it in both the squat and the deadlift.

The most I have ever lifted in training in the deadlift is 220kg, but I do not believe it is a true max, it was a pretty easy lift. The most i have had in competition is 252.5kg. So i think I get at least 20+ kilos from the suit.

In the squat I do not quite remember what my 1RM without a suit is, but I think I have done 220kg in the raw squat as well. But the true 1RM RAW max should be a little higher.

I look forward to go back into competition when the time comes.


Here is my latest video. I am in the end of the smolov program now... It is going quite well...

Some front-squats and kickjerks behind the neck in this video.

All comments welcome. Open for critique as well!


Awesome. I love your videos. I can't believe after falling down on the 130 jerk attempt you came back and tried it twice more. That's determination.

Good luck on getting 180kg raw front squat.


Seattle_Lifter, thanks for the good comment! I am not blessed with good genetics, so I try to add up for it with some determination and effort! :wink:


Great vid!


Wow Smolov 3 times. WHAT A BEAST!


I don't know if you are ironic or if you are genuine.

Smolov is a good program, and if you haven't tried it, it is quite some experience...

-- stallion


Some strongman training. First time ever yoke.

Unfortunately, this training was too heavy for my back/to early after injury. It was fun, but I had a lot of pain afterwards. So this kind of training I will not do in the near future.

Still worth viewing.


I'm being honest lol. I did smolov once for back squat and the last week of each cycle was tough as nails.


Thank you. Yes it is really tough. And i will be happy when i am finished this time. But hard work pays off!


Video from 2nd last smolow workout in the intense meso cycle.

After base meso cycle, i could barely do 150kg, look how easy 160kg is now..


According to the plan, I nailed a 170kg raw frontsquat two days ago. Smolov for front squat is completed. The 1RM progress is measured to 25kg.

I am on my way to a 200kg raw front squat.

My bodyweight on maxing day was 105kg with clothes.

I hope you like the video:


Good job!


Thank you!

Does anyone have anything to say about the technique, anything that I could improve?

-- Stallion