T Nation

What Kind of Box is a Bench?


I sometimes squat off of one of those mobile bench presses that they have in the dumbell section at my university and any LA Fitness I have been to. Im sure youve seen a million people do it if youve trained at a commercial gym.

Since I squat a ton more this way, Im guessing its not a true box squat.

Is it a "high" box squat?

Any tips on how to get a for-real box?

Speaking of box... happy friday night and thanks in advance!


Unless you are crazy tall a bench is going to be a really high. I am 6’2" and a bench puts me well above parallel. You can call it whatever you want “high” box squat, box squat above parallel, whatever.

I would be careful squatting to a high box, use that exercise sparingly. In most cases that will have little carryover to your raw squat and you increase your chances of injuring your lower back, because you are sitting down with more weight than you can free squat.

As for a real box, you can use one of those plyo boxes that are usually red if your gym has them, stack plates, aerobic steps, whatever you can find. Also, you could always just make your own, which I have not done, but I know several guys here have, I am sure you can find info about it on the internet.


yea I will use it a couple times a year when I feel that I am stuck in explosiveness on my deads or think I could benefit from some “supramaximal” loading to let my joints know what they’re in for once I break a plateau.


There has been a period during which I’ve been squatting high every other training session - not egregiously so, but maybe 4" above parallel. I’ve found that it has very good carryover to a full squat for me.

However, when I do high squats I make sure they are either a) paused or b) Anderson squats or c) 3 count paused box squats. Being forced to start from a dead stop seems to build strength that bleeds over to the bottom end. But you do have to stick full (parallel) squats or lower in there during the cycle or you will lose the bottom end eventually.