T Nation

Squat Help/Mobility/Elevated Heels


#1

I’m just starting to get into training and have found my mobility is lacking. I’ve researched what I need to do to fix it and am doing a lot of hip flexor, add/abductor, and posterior chain stretching (ankle flexibility is good). I’m also starting some yoga once or twice a week. While I’m working on that I’d like to know some thoughts on elevating my heels with 10lb weights to keep form while squating. I have trouble balancing back on my heels without doing a good morning. Will elevating my heels isolate my quads? I’d like to build strength in my hamstrings and glutes too.


#2

If ankle mobility is no issue, then I don’t see what benefit you will get, unless you consider the time off from wrecking yourself trying to plant your feet on those things a benefit.


#3

If you decide to squat with elevated heels start saving for olympic shoes and ditch the plates


#4

If your heels elevate when you descend, it’s highly probably your ankle mobility isn’t all that great.

And no, you will not wreck yourself trying to fix your stance. I have no clue how fixing a mobility problem could ever ‘wreck’ you.

You can ignore the problem, stand on the plates, get the shoes, etc, but it will catch up to you sooner or later.


#5

Ankle mobility is not the problem…like I said. I’m addressing what I need to my question is what does doing that affect in terms of quads, hams, glutes? Thanks


#6

Elevating your heels will shift a little more emphasis to the quads but in terms of real world results it won’t really make much difference. Squats’ll still hammer your posterior chain.


#7

Thanks. What is the difference between using weights and using Olympic lifting shoes? It seems strange that elevating ones heels through the use of weights is so frowned upon yet lifting shoes are recommended.


#8

More quad involvement happens when you have the most flexion at the knee. If you don’t have the mobility in your ankles to allow your knees to fully bend then you either:

  • Come up on your toes or
  • Fall back on your ass

Obviously, you don’t want the latter so oly shoes essentially allow you to come up on your toes while maintaining a stable base.

There is less strain on the knee by raising your heel but can you see why you don’t need plates/shoes if your ankle mobility is great?

As for shoes over plates:

The shoe has a totally flat surface giving you more contact with the floor (more stable). On plates, you get reduced contact points

Shoes have no give which means there is no power loss. I’m assuming you are wearing some rubber soled shoe?

Finally, all your focus is on the squat and not trying to find your footing or worrying about missteps.

None of this is a big deal if you are using moderate weight and just doing it until your mobility improves but you may consider them if you’re always using plates.


#9

damn son, looks like you got a good handle on it.

Heels still elevate during squats even though you have good ankle mobility.

Your ankle range of motion must be incredible. My apologies.


#10

Funny you think you know what you’re talking about. Wasn’t aware my ankle should be able to produce under a 15 degree angle into dorsiflexion. But you would know you’ve done mobility tests on me


#11

Lol hahahahhahha

Like I said, my apologies. Didn’t mean to rustle your jimmies buddy. Good luck