T Nation

Squat Form Check/Suggestions

Worked up to 315x3 today. It was my second squat session today, offseason football required that I squat during that workout. This is after school at the d1 gym that I attend. The most weight I have ever done on squats is 315x5. During offseason I did 135x5 and 225x5. I would have done more but te coaches don’t give us enough time to warm up with weights so I had to jump in cold turkey. Anyways after school I started my 3x3 workout, after I warmed up, with 265, then did 295, then 315. The video is of my set with 315. On the third rep I nearly fell backwards which is unusual. Since I lift raw usually my hips shoot up and my chest caves.

So here is the question, why did that happen? Was it exhaustion? Weak body part or form/ not being tight enough? One of the smarter coaches I talked to said my core probably wasn’t strong enough, yet I was strong enough to finish the rep?

Any input on this is appreciated greatly. Thank y’all in advance for the help.

On a side note I turned 17 back in November, I know good is relative and my numbers are obvious smaller than the others here, but is that a good number to have? I’ve also never done a true 1 rep max on squats.

I think that if my core is weak (it probably is) its more than likely my obliques and low back.

I would say upper/lower back. Your losing your back arch when you come out of the hole and your upper back is rounding as well.

First of all, don’t worry too much about if your squat is a good squat compared to anyone else. Just worry about you.

Second of all, Squat doesn’t look bad overall. I don’t think it’s core weakness or anything like that that caused you to lose balance. It was justa bad rep, you got out of position and just lost your balance. Don’t overthink it, bad reps happen.

As I said, squat doesn’t look too bad overall. Your biggest problem as I see it is that your reps are just a little sloppy. You aren’t getting quite to depth, and it looks like that could be a flexibility issue (like if you went lower, you would end up either on your toes or falling backwards). But aside from that, you just look a little uncomfortable under the weight. your squat is a little choppy and a little off-balance. My guess is just that you need more practice. You mentioned doing sets of 5 and 3, but maybe some higher-rep sets at lighter weights would do you well. And maybe you just need to warm up more. I know you said you are tight on time, but doing more reps at light weights would be really good for your form, and would help get your joints and muscles warmer so you would have an easier time getting to depth. Squatting is a skill, and the more reps you get in the better your form is going to be, and the better your form is the stronger your squat will be.

I suggest a warmup like this: Bar for 2 sets of 10, then 135 x 10-12, 225 x 5-8, then whatever your work sets are. If you keep the rest to 2 minutes a set, you should be able to manage that warmup pretty fast, and the extra reps with light weights are going to let you feel out good form and balance so that you do better at higher weights.

Thanks Jtown, and NK after school when I did this session I have plenty of time and got warmed up great. Flexibility isn’t an issue I can get lower no prob. Am I descending to fast which looks sloppy or something else you mean? Should I do sets of 6 with a lighter load or challenging sets of 6.

It’s probably that I just need more practice at the heavier loads and should have rested another minute or 2 before attempting.

Thanks Jtown, and NK after school when this was filmed I have plenty of time for my workout. Recently i just started to work with weight 85% and up so probably thats one reason I look sloppy, the other is I think i am descending to quickly.

Flexibility isn’t an issue, I could go lower now that you mention depth wasn’t stellar.

Would doing sets of 6 with say 245 or soemthing more challenging or easier be better for form work and consistency under the bar.


Side note- what do y’all think of me getting knee wraps?
What would be best ones? My thigh is about 27-28" and calves are 17" so what size if I got them?

Not a terrible squat for sure. Definitely your upper back is not being tight enough, the bar is falling forward on your back and the elbows are not tight enough under the bar. Also, depth is being cut so i suggest really pulling the bar in tihgt, keeping elbows under the bar and focus on sitting between your feet.

As far as knee wraps, theres no real sizing, just the length. I see no real reason for you to go for anything but basic 2m knee wraps as it seems you are training for football. Don’t worry about them being too short or not helping enough because I can honestly get >80lb out of 2m knee wraps. At this point, knee sleeves is probably more than sufficient for you.

Also, I am not certain where the idea of doing sets of 6 came from but honestly IMO, and I do voice this opinion a lot because I believe in it, I think that if you are falling within prelipins tables (google it) then you shouldn’t be overly worried. As long as you maintain good form you are benefitting.

Thanks arramzy, i would be doing a lower bar for sure but in football season I tore the labrum in each shoulder on seperate occasions, and the extreme stretching is painful. I can do everything now I previously could except incline press, ROM on flyes, and upright rows. Bench and Shoulder press don’t hurt surpisingly.

Regarding upper back tightness could someone go into detail or link to that one. I thought I had it tight by pinching and retracting my scapulas together and then burying my neck and head into the bar. Definetly extremely tight but accordingly to y’all its not right. I retract them not so much down and back like as in a bench press, or up and back like a shrug but back.

How much lower should I get on the depth? I can bring in my stance a couple of inches each way and get probably another 3" in depth would be my guess. My stance width is about where my middles toes would be underneath the rings on the bar and my big to is angled out about 3" from pointing straight forward.

Not sure if I mentioned this earlier either but I’m 6’2" if that means anything.