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Quad imbalanced with Hamstrings

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by lildog, Jul 20, 2010.

  1. lildog

    lildog A Warrior's Heart

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    Basically my hamstrings/glutes are stronger than the front of my thigh/leg. Disproportionate etc...i think this is from doing Squats and Deadlifts which are hamstring intensive. Obviously my quads are worked doing those exercises to a degree but not enough for my body.

    I have a grade 1 muscle strain in my right quad. Now i'm doing the good ol RICE method to help it out, but next week im afraid it won't be ready. I'll see then.


    Question is...Besides "front squats" what other inner quad movement can i do that will help develop my quad strength? I also do Leg Presses for volume/assistance work which i can feel work my quad but its most the outer quad for me that feels like its working (I think there are 4 "quad" muscles in the front of your leg)


    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. RedNeckJiuJitsu

    RedNeckJiuJitsu Black Belt

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    Much as I hate to say it, leg extensions.

    Might be something off on your squat form, too, if your quads aren't getting worked enough.
     
  3. zx

    zx adventurer

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    Leg extensions before squat IMO.
     
  4. Endo

    Endo o hai!

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    That's what I was thinking.
     
  5. lildog

    lildog A Warrior's Heart

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    I tend to have a wider than shoulder width stance for squats but have been working on narrowing the stance.


    What are some things with Squat form that can be hurting my quads or causing imbalance. If i had a video id show one but i don't. I use a box to make sure i get the proper depth, but im sure im far from great in my form.:icon_sad:
     
  6. lildog

    lildog A Warrior's Heart

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    Do you mean i should do leg extensions literally before i squat? Thanks for knowledge. I also suck at lunges, even before i hurt my quad i could tell my unilateral leg stability and strength sucked.
     
  7. chia

    chia POWER OF THE GLOW

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    What makes you so sure this is actually an imbalance? A quad injury can happen for a multitude of reasons, not necessarily due it being relatively weaker than the glutes or hams. How exactly did you strain your quad?
     
  8. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    If you have access to a sled or a prowler that be a very good choice. Backwards sled drags work the quads like nothing else.

    That being said, I think the issue probably has more to do with how you are squatting then anything else. What kind of shoes are you squatting in? Oly shoes will put more emphasis on the quads. Are you pushing your knees out? Do you squat high bar or low bar? How much do you front squat in relation to back squat? What does your routine look like?
     
  9. lildog

    lildog A Warrior's Heart

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    To the guy above your post. I'm guessing, i don't know for sure if its from an imbalance. I got what i thought was a "charlie horse" just from doing a few lunges after an upperbody routine. The pain went right away basically and then 3-4 days later i do squats and some lunges and after doing the first few sets of squats i felt a ting in my quad etc.


    I deadlift without shoes on or with flat puma shoes. Sometimes i warm up (treadmill) with airmaxs and do bench and some back work with them but it shouldn't be an issue.

    I can't front squat shit. One time i warmed up some and grabbed a 60lbs DB and did some front squats and then grabbed an 80lbs DB and did 2 sets of 6. I don't usually every do front squats with dumbells or the "traditional" way.

    Routine is like this.

    Workout A

    Warm up
    Squat
    Leg press
    lunges (maybe maybe not)
    Shoulder Press

    Workout B

    Bench Press
    inclined bench press
    Dips or
    Overhead Press
    Hypers
    DB Rows/Bent Rows


    Workout C

    Pull ups
    Deadlift
    Declined Bench
    T bar Rows



    Thanks for the help.
     
  10. zx

    zx adventurer

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    Yes, try to do it like warmup for squats, don't go too heavy few workouts. You should feel if it works then.
     
  11. PWR1982

    PWR1982 Green Belt

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    If you are sure it's quad imbalance... change up your form to high bar, close stance. Or start doing front squats instead of back squats for a month.
     
  12. lildog

    lildog A Warrior's Heart

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    Can you post a pic or description of "high bar" versus "low bar"? I have been purposely closing my stance b/c before i had a groin pull and a narrow stance elevated the discomfort i would usually feel in the inner thigh area when doing heavy squats. But i think i kept a relatively low bar position.

    I know athletes and lifters very but generally is there a back squat to front squat ratio? For instance if X lifter can back squat 300lbs then their front squat should be = ???
     
  13. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    I don't think it's an issue with exercise choice. It's more likely an issue with exercise technique, or an activation issue. Technique wise, my guesses are you could either be not pushing your knees out enough, or you're GMing the weight when you squat, but without a video it's hard to say.

    I'd say try warming up with light front squats. If you elevate your heal slightly there'll be more focus on the quads. Ideally you'd be using oly shoes, but for the warm-up try having your heal on something, like a small weight plate. The idea here isn't to train the front squat, but to activate the quads. So the weight isn't important. You could also Start day B with front squats, and drop incline bench.
     
  14. lildog

    lildog A Warrior's Heart

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    Can you explain "pushing your knees out" more and "GMing" Thanks for help.

    So if i was doing light front squats i have like 5lb plate under both heels or regular squats? Also, would you recommend using a DB or a Bar for the front squats and why or why not?

    Are you also saying i should drop incline bench b/c its too much volume for strength to complete two types of heavier pressing?


    *Edit* i am messing with the weight some times before i squat and thats stupid i know, but i also think i need to figure out the whole push my knees out thing is*
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2010
  15. PWR1982

    PWR1982 Green Belt

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    Gming the weight means you are doing a good morning - rising with your hips too much from the hole, and then doing a good morning.

    Look I don't really know what your question is, or what ever you want to know... your quads are weak? Do exercises that target them more - front squats/high bar squats.

    High bar means the bar is on your shoulders, on a place where you could possibly squat it without holding it with your arms. It makes you stay more upright, so it's something between a low bar back squat where you sit back a lot and front squat.
    I'm not really sure how not pushing out your knees enough would have something to do with quads (glutes would make sense though), but it's another thing you should do anyway.
     
  16. CrazyNutz

    CrazyNutz White Belt

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  17. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    GMing out of the squat is explained here:
    YouTube - Squat Rx #2

    When you squat, you want to drive your knees out so they track over the toes. If your not, it could explain why you feel weakness on the inside of your quads. It's demonstrated well here:
    YouTube - Chinese Lifters at the 2008 Arnold

    With high bar squats the bar rests on top of the traps, with low bar squats the bar rests between the traps and the posterior delts. This means that the bar is farther back with low bar squats, and the shift in the center of gravity results in the differences seen here:
    http://www.crossfitdublin.ie/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/squat-balance-line1.jpg

    Definetly do front squats with the bar. That way the weigth is supported across the shoulders, I.e. a much more solid position. 5lb plates under the heals for the front squats during a warm-up only, just to emphasize the quads and work on activating them. Don't do it for your work sets. I do think that 3 pressing exercises in one workout is too much, and you'd be better off dropping one to make time and energy to work on your front squat.
     
  18. turbozed

    turbozed Red Belt

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    I used to know of a video where they had a split screen comparison of a guy doing low-bar vs high-bar squat. Would be perfect at this point but I can't remember how to find it. Can anyone help?
     
  19. MatterOverMind

    MatterOverMind Pulling for you

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    High-bar versus low-bar back squats on Vimeo
     
  20. PCP

    PCP Guest

    your hamstrings/glutes SHOULD be stronger than the quads. you WANT them to be stronger. you might even have overdeveloped quads which caused this injury. most likely though you were use a quad-dominant squat form (knees forward, not hitting parallel, bar placed high, etc...) that placed a lot of stress on that area
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 20, 2010

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