T Nation

Squat Stance Width and Poundages

When I squat, I place my feet no more than a foot apart, sometimes even closer than that. This is by far the most comfortable position for me to squat in, and allows me to use the most poundages while maintaining the greatest depth.

Is this normal though? Is having a skinny stance “bad” in some way, like it is physiologically hard on my frame? Should I progressively try to move my stance out, or just keep it the way it is?


Move it out, man. Think of the old Pontiac commericals, “wider is better”. At least as far as potential for high poundages moved. Close stance is useful for pounding the quads, but the wider you go the more you involve the PC muscles which are far more powerful.

Chances are you just need to work on flexibility. I imagine your inner thighs and hips are extremely tight. Look up some mobility and stretching drills, they definetely help.

My understanding is that close stance squats tend to work the quadriceps more while wide stance squats tend to work the hamstrings and glutes (all else being equal, of course). I don’t think one is “better.” They’re just different.

Also, how heavy are these poundages you’re talking about? That’ll help us know how advanced you are.

Finally, I believe that your stance is a bit abnormal, since most people squat with at least a shoulder width stance, which is more than 12 inches (unless you’re actually a stick).

Thats really really close even for a close stance squat.

Even for Olympic style squats I use shoulder width and I don’t have any problems bottoming out.

Well, I’m defintely not that big and strong.

Right now I weigh about 195 at 5’11. For the squat, I can rep 315 for 7 ass to the grass reps. I guess I will move my stance out wider, because it seems like the general consensus is that my stance is too narrow. I will definitely have to stretch more, especially my hip flexors, because a wider stance seems to stress these more for me.