T Nation

Squats for Beginner

how many reps should a beginner be able to do with the bar, before adding weight?

I don’t think that there’s a set amount of reps that you need to be able to do. If you feel like 8 is easy then add some weight ad try to get 8 reps on that. Aim to add weight every week of your training (doesn’t have to be a lot - 5lbs every week will add up). I would also recommend doing a beginners program that has some progression written into it such as starting strength. Just make sure you aren’t sacrificing form for weight.

[quote]phatphit wrote:
how many reps should a beginner be able to do with the bar, before adding weight?[/quote]
It’s not so much that you should be able to use the empty bar for X-many reps before adding weight.

You want to add some weight, get X-many reps (depending on your program), and then add a little more weight while maintaining good technique.

But if you need an arbitrary rule of thumb, if you use the bar for 10 or 12 good, deep reps with solid form (no back rounding or knee caving), then go heavier… whether it’s 10 pounds or 50 pounds.

Let your program, goals, and technique determine how often you increase the weight.

agree with Chris here. I would also make sure to progress slowly. I mean if this is your first time training do not add more than 10 lbs to the bar per session you might stunt your progresses not to mention that you’re still learning the form and excessive weight might make you learn a wrong execution that would be problematic to correct later on.

Agree with the others. Have someone check your form and make sure it’s perfect. And get LOW - that’s the biggest problem. Get in the habit now of breaking parallel on every single rep. I see lots of guys in the gym who squat sky-high. If you get the habit, you’ll just have to unlearn it later on and start squat training all over.

Once you get a dozen perfect, low reps on the empty bar, go up.