T Nation

Squat Bar Placement Pain!

Hey, ok, iv’e been squatting for many year, about 8 to be exact. I always have placed the bar on top of my traps.
recently ive been gettin more serious with powerlifting, and i have a 435 squat now.

My problem is, ive switched to placing the bar below my traps, and between my shoulder blade, like all expierenced lifters do. My wrist kill me, and my shoulder, from being so tight in that spot. Is this just something i will get used of? and the pain will go away, once i am used of this bar placement? i Do have a pic of were i place my hands and bar if needed. I want to keep the bar in this spot, because i see all big lifters place it here, this pain is just getting really in the way!

Everytime ive had shoulder pain from the bar position ive just widened my grip and it seems to alleviate a lot of the pain.

  1. widening your grip will probably help

  2. not all good lifters squat with their bar there. Plenty of great squatters squat with the bar high on the traps, or somewhere in between low and high bar. Being good at squatting is largely about finding what works best for you. If you are more comfortable with high bar, if squatting with the higher bar is going to keep your shoulders and wrists healthy so you can bench better, then stick with that. There is nothing wrong with learning from lifters better than you, but you also need to find your own way.

Squat whichever way doesn’t cause you pain. I fell into the trap of thinking I had to carry the bar low until my elbow was destroyed and I had to stop benching for months. Carry the bar high if its comfortable for you.

As above: experiment with grip width.

ok then,i will mess with the grip a little more, but if it doesnt work, than i guess i will go back to what was working for me. Thanks

If you have access to a safety squat bar try using that a little more to give your shoulders and elbows some time to heal without missing squatting.

every once and a while low bar squats hurt my wrist and i just wrap them and it helps take the pain away completely.

[quote]asooneyeonig wrote:
every once and a while low bar squats hurt my wrist and i just wrap them and it helps take the pain away completely.[/quote]

ok, ill give the wrist wraps a try next time.

You can try a false grip on the bar. Some people don’t wrap their pinky fingers over the bar. Both techniques are supposed to help alleviate wrist/elbow/shoulder pain.

I would go back to the way you were squatting pain free. Just because one particular bar position is popular doesn’t necessarily mean it’s best for you. Really, you’d be best off getting a hand/bar placement pic of your original positioning and your new low bar positioning. See if you can get squat vids of your squats with the different bar positions. If there’s REALLY an advantage to your new lower bar position, you might be able to make it work with some tweaking, but if there’s no advantage, just go back to how you used to hold the bar.

For the record, I squat with the bar pretty high up on my traps and a couple of my training partners do, too.