Squat woes

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by Potomak, Aug 8, 2015.

  1. Potomak

    Potomak White Belt

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    Been training 1.5 years now with no competition goals in mind, just like being strong. Jumped into 5/3/1 after my Starting Strength gains subsided. However, I did not take the "traditional" approach with training - being that all of my squatting has been box squatting and I have an approximate 1RM of about 410.

    I tried making it work but at 6'5" I am guessing my lever lengths have something to do with my issues. I simply can't go anywhere near parallel. Tried YouTubing mobility drills, etc. Did the Agile 8 4 times a day (yes, 4. Once in the morning, once at night, and twice on break at work.) Nothing.

    Anyway, the point of this post. I did some reading and 'old school bodybuilders' used to put a 2x4 under their heels to hit perfect depth. Tried it, and what do you know? My hamstrings ended up touching my calves. ATG full squat with no issues whatsoever.

    My questions:
    1) Is it safe to continue doing this?
    2) If not, what is it about raising the heels that enables me to hit a proper depth squat?
     
  2. SexyMahnaz

    SexyMahnaz Green Belt

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    You'd be better off buying some weightlifting shoes for the same effect [they have built in raised heels]
     
  3. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    It would be safer not to not be backing onto a raised surface, while trying to life heavy weights. So it does reduce safety. So, as was said, you'd be better off buying a weightlifting shoe.

    A weightlifting shoe allows your knees to track more forward with less bend at the ankle. So it could be that your ankles lack mobility, and that some old fashioned static stretching for the calves would help. However, a lot of people do squat better with a weightlifting shoe, regardless of mobility work.
     
  4. Dan O

    Dan O Purple Belt

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    Spend some time on your ankles and buy some proper weightlifting shoes and you'll be fine.

    And stop box squatting.
     
  5. KnightTemplar

    KnightTemplar Halloween Belt Platinum Member

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    It's not an exercise I do, but why exactly?
     
  6. UVee

    UVee Senior Moderator Staff Member Senior Moderator

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    I tried going the route of putting something under my heels but found it a hindrance trying to get the right position. I was spending too long adjusting before actually squatting. Oly shoes have been helpful not just because of the heel but also makes you feel more stable.

     
  7. counterkulture

    counterkulture Orange Belt

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    look into ido portals 30/30 squat routine, it worked wonders for my squats, google will hook you up. Within the month you'll be squatting much better.

    Im 6ft4 and i can easily go ATG with my squats, i wear Merrel Footgloves and previously wore vibram five fingers.

    Also, you could try the bar in the "low" position, it changes the levers, i did this for a while but i didnt like the position, however for some it can make squatting feel better.
     
  8. Tebowned

    Tebowned Boise Dime.

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    I was kind of in the same boat,
    Two things I recommend
    1.) use a lighter weight try again and slowly add more weight.
    2.) Widen your stance. It looks funny but I added like a foot of depth.
     
  9. SteveX

    SteveX Nobody F*cks Wit Da Jesus

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    +1 to weightlifting shoes

    I don't know what you were doing as far as the mobility drills from youtube, but Agile 8 doesn't really address much in regards to ankle mobility. So you could do it 100 times a day and probably wouldn't see much benefit from it in terms of your ankle mobility (which seems to be the limiting factor here).

    Youtube some ankle mobility drills and start putting some effort into those and see how things go
     
  10. Potomak

    Potomak White Belt

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    Thanks all, Appreciated
     
  11. Medusas Weave

    Medusas Weave Blue Belt

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    This guy goes over why beginners should not do it, and it seems like lots of people tell beginners to do this to help their squat.
    Would you say he is right in what he is saying in the video?
    [YT]atkLWxOJvTE[/YT]
     
  12. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    He's basically saying there are some potential issues with how a beginner might use a box. Which is correct, but it's not as if those issues are very difficult to work around. Just because it's possible to mess something up, doesn't mean it isn't useful. From my personal experience, I know the box can be a useful tool in teaching people to squat, although as I've got better at teaching the squat, I use it significantly less.
     
  13. Dan O

    Dan O Purple Belt

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    If you need a box to learn how to squat A: you're a moron. Or, B: your coach is a moron.
     
  14. deadshot138

    deadshot138 Red Belt

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    Weight lifting shoes plus stretch your ankles and hip flexors. Don't cheap out on the shoes either. Last place you want to lose stability is descending into a squat with over 400lbs. on your back
     
  15. Medusas Weave

    Medusas Weave Blue Belt

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    Right, which he says it if useful if you are advanced
     
  16. Tosa

    Tosa Red Belt

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    A lot of people are morons, and that includes when it comes to physical skills. I've met people who have a ridiculous amount of trouble doing something as simple as breaking at the hips without a whole bunch of other, unwanted crap, happening. If having a something physical there helps cue them, I'm not against it.

    Personally, I've seen it used more as a teaching tool. I don't personally know anyone who is "advanced" who box squats with any frequency. Much more pause squatting, or even squatting off pins, instead.
     
  17. MuyThaiTom

    MuyThaiTom Brown Belt

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    Why cant you go near parallel? Can you physically not do it with just a bar on your back? I'm 6'2 and realized i wasnt doing proper depth and i started from scratch. I lost about 100lbs off my max, be prepared for that. Just start with light weights, toss the ego and work your way back up.
     
  18. bad seed

    bad seed Double Yellow Card Double Yellow Card

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    do goblet squats as often as you can throughout the day. Just get your body used to going down low and staying there rigidly while holding something in front of you.
     

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