T Nation

Squat Critique Please

This is 355 for three singles from this morning.
Any critiques, suggestions, or advice would be appreciated. I was/am aiming for 400 in mid November. I’m 5’10", 185?lbs, it varies almost 10 pounds it seems like daily. I also just started using a belt,


Nothing major stands out. Just keep eating, training, recovering and getting stronger.

Not too bad but a few observations:

  1. Rep no. 2 was the best, depth wise.

  2. You could set up with your chest higher. You seem a bit caved in.

  3. A little more stability is needed.

  4. I like to see the knees follow a rearward path from the bottom, all the way to the top. When you came out of the hole, your hips initiated rearward then the knees came forward halfway up, then went backwards again. Every knee injury I’ve seen clips of had this motion pattern (Paul Jordan, Ed Coan, Mark Bell, etc.). Strengthen your posterior chain more and sit back a bit further. Good luck.

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Could you explain the knee thing, perhaps a cue that could help?
And for the stability issue, more core work? Specific core work?

When the posterior chain is weak, the body will default to the strongest position which in your case seems to be pushing the knees forward trying to use the quads to assist the posterior chain. The prime movers in the squat are the glutes and secondary the adductors. The quads can be thought of as tertiary movers. Don’t forget we’re talking about the low bar squat here.

When the hips stay back, the glutes are doing most of the work, however they can only function when the midsection, spinal erectors, and hip flexors (help maintain arch), can properly brace the spine.

As for midsection work (I hate the term “core”), I like Roman Chair situps, inclined situps, spreadeagled situps on the floor, side bends, suitcase partials in the rack, and leg raises. Also, one thing that always worked for me is just simply supporting heavy weight and trying to be as still as possible for 10-30 seconds with heavy weight (up to 100 lbs over max).

Looking back over the last few months I realize I was not spending enough time working my posterior chain, so I am not surprised to see it being the weak point. With only a few weeks til meet day, I will add in some more work specifically for that, but its a lesson learned for the next go around.
I have a Roman Chair at home, but have only ever used it for back extensions, I’ll try situps on it and do more leg raises. And i had in mind to do some heavy walk outs or holds in the next few weeks, so that helps confirm my thinking.

Thank you again for the responses.

blockquote, div.yahoo_quoted { margin-left: 0 !important; border-left:1px #715FFA solid !important; padding-left:1ex !important; background-color:white !important; } Too late to change anything. go to the meet and make the best of it. your body needs time to adapt to changes either strength related or technique related. also if you have never done Roman chairs, have a spotter. Failing to come up for a rep can get ugly fast.