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S&C UnderGround >> Question about squat technique


12/3/12 9:12 PM
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Invisible Lats Syndrome
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LordSeano -  I use a pretty wide stance at the moment - wider than shoulders. To the point i get the helpful 'instructors' at my gym coming over and teling me i should be standing with my legs close together and not turning my feet out as much.... Phone Post


These jerk offs probably couldn't squat their bodyweight to parallel, so tell them to fuck off.
12/4/12 2:13 PM
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WillD
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I have a question that I should probably create my own thread for but I don't really know how to create a thread for a sub-forum (it might be easy but I don't know how). This thread is close enough to what I'm asking about so I'll try this route...

I used to use a lot of machines and dumbbells (which I've come to learn that I should've been disgusted with myself).

Then my son was born and started using a kettlebell because I could do it in my basement and it didn't take up much room.

Now after some time of lurking the shit out of the S&C forum I bought Starting Strength and I'm ready to roll with some compound lifts. The only thing I'm worried about is doing these lifts on my own. My schedule/family makes it difficult to work out with a partner most of the time. Should I be doing heavy squats and bench press on my own? Should I use a smith machine or something? I'm sure most of you would rather I not use any kind of machine but I'm worried about hurting myself or needing a spot and not having one. Any suggestions? I'm really worried to start this workout on my own. Maybe I shouldn't be but I could use some help.
12/4/12 2:40 PM
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LordSeano
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Im not so familiar with starting strength but if you structure your program correctly you should be able to get good gains without going to failure. Phone Post
12/4/12 3:46 PM
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WillD
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So lighter weight and no smith machine?
12/4/12 4:36 PM
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Chocolate Shatner
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No Smith Machine. EVER.

That being said, I train alone. With a barbell, doing the compound lifts. The main thing is learning to dump the bar if need be.

Squats are easy to dump the bar. Bench not so much, but learn to read yourself, and leave "1 in the tank", or even 2 if you are unsure. I'm quite sure there have been more than a few reps I've not done because I wasn't sure that day of if I could get it up or not.

You can still go heavy, just don't be fully retarded.
12/4/12 8:02 PM
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I train at home by myself and do 3-5 rep max lifts on all the big compound lift. I've never been in trouble and I just use squat stands.

It works for me. Here's how I handle it:

-Don't lift to failure intentionally of course (duh), but if you don't think you've got another rep in you then leave it.

-Know your limits, be strict with your log book, do many incremental warm up sets and program your lifting so you take a few weeks to find a groove and work up to a weight that's challenging.

-Heavy benching is done powerlifting style with narrower grip and bar touching lower down on my chest. If you fail you should be able to roll it over your John Thomas and sit up.

-I use squat stands and just shrug the bar off if I'm ever in the shit. You could use a cage or if the space doesn't permit, you can get the sawhorse style safety bars that are free standing.
12/4/12 10:01 PM
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WillD
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Thanks guys Phone Post
12/5/12 1:56 PM
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andyman011
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I got a question. I can see how squatting in a smith can ruin your range of motion but doesn't benching in a smith equal free benching minus balancing a bit. From what I know the bar goes up and down in a straight line in a bench. Please correct me if I'm wrong because I do regular and incline bench on a smith so I don't drop Shit on myself if I push too hard Phone Post
12/5/12 2:59 PM
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LordSeano
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That 'balancing a bit' is a pretty important part Phone Post
12/5/12 8:25 PM
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andyman011 -  I got a question. I can see how squatting in a smith can ruin your range of motion but doesn't benching in a smith equal free benching minus balancing a bit. From what I know the bar goes up and down in a straight line in a bench. Please correct me if I'm wrong because I do regular and incline bench on a smith so I don't drop Shit on myself if I push too hard Phone Post


Nothing is completely linear when it comes to human motion.

Benching is a compound exercise, it kind of defeats the purpose to use a smith machine and remove all elements of stabilisation.
12/5/12 8:44 PM
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andyman011
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Invisible Lats Syndrome -
andyman011 -  I got a question. I can see how squatting in a smith can ruin your range of motion but doesn't benching in a smith equal free benching minus balancing a bit. From what I know the bar goes up and down in a straight line in a bench. Please correct me if I'm wrong because I do regular and incline bench on a smith so I don't drop Shit on myself if I push too hard Phone Post


Nothing is completely linear when it comes to human motion.

Benching is a compound exercise, it kind of defeats the purpose to use a smith machine and remove all elements of stabilisation.
So the smith is completely useless? Phone Post
12/5/12 11:59 PM
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Chocolate Shatner
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well, the Smith Machine does make a handy towel rack every once in a while.
12/6/12 4:13 AM
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LordSeano
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arnanderson - Sounds like you are using a wide stance box squat style of squatting, which is designed for geared powerlifting. If you are not wearing support gear, this style of squatting can beat the hell out of your hips. Try Olympic style squatting or get some briefs
Interesting just read a few articles on olympic vs power style and you could be on to something. The stretching and glute exercises im doing are helping but once i have hit my target weight i think i might try more olympic style and see how i go with that.

I squatted two days ago and didnt have nearly as much pain in the hips.

Good advice though cheers Phone Post
12/6/12 12:02 PM
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None So Blind
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WillD - I have a question that I should probably create my own thread for but I don't really know how to create a thread for a sub-forum (it might be easy but I don't know how). This thread is close enough to what I'm asking about so I'll try this route...

I used to use a lot of machines and dumbbells (which I've come to learn that I should've been disgusted with myself).

Then my son was born and started using a kettlebell because I could do it in my basement and it didn't take up much room.

Now after some time of lurking the shit out of the S&C forum I bought Starting Strength and I'm ready to roll with some compound lifts. The only thing I'm worried about is doing these lifts on my own. My schedule/family makes it difficult to work out with a partner most of the time. Should I be doing heavy squats and bench press on my own? Should I use a smith machine or something? I'm sure most of you would rather I not use any kind of machine but I'm worried about hurting myself or needing a spot and not having one. Any suggestions? I'm really worried to start this workout on my own. Maybe I shouldn't be but I could use some help.

I'm in the same boat as you.

I'm 42 and a working professional and have zero inclination to jack myself up somehow while exercising. And I really like Starting Strength, have followed Rip's routines a couple times and gotten ridiculously strong (for me, anyway).

I also exercise alone - s/t I do go with my wife, but in all honesty a 100 pound girl is not likely to do much if I drop a heavy barbell on my chest while benching.

My solution is to use a cage/ squat rack for *everything.* I can set safety pins for bench so that if I do fail, I can set it down on the safety bars/pins and squirm out, it won't really put any major pressure on me. Same as if I were to drop it somehow. And same with squats - I know where to set the pins for a smidgen below parallel, so if I fail a squat rep,I go ass-to-grass and simply move out when the bar comes to rest on the pins.

Does this interfere with your bench technique? Yeah, a bit, but in the grand scheme of things it's about 1 inch of range-of-motion, and like I said, I'm just an older guy lifting for fun, not some pro athlete or competitor, so that difference is negligible to me.

Also, someone mentioned if you fail on bench, just roll it down your body - I think we've all done that (I know I have), but there are documented cases of people fucking themselves up bad (including a kid who died) from doing just that. That kid rolled a relatively light weight (around 170 or 180, IIRC) down his chest and belly and somehow tore his aorta, bled to death internally in just a few minutes.

BTW, Rip's recommendation for failed benches is that you *never* collar the bar - when you fail and lower it to your chest, tilt it to one side so that the weights slide off. Of course, it will slam the other way once that happens :-) but better than than getting it across your windpipe and suffocating, which reportedly happens to 5-7 people a year, every year.
12/6/12 9:13 PM
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andyman011 - 
Invisible Lats Syndrome -
andyman011 -  I got a question. I can see how squatting in a smith can ruin your range of motion but doesn't benching in a smith equal free benching minus balancing a bit. From what I know the bar goes up and down in a straight line in a bench. Please correct me if I'm wrong because I do regular and incline bench on a smith so I don't drop Shit on myself if I push too hard Phone Post


Nothing is completely linear when it comes to human motion.

Benching is a compound exercise, it kind of defeats the purpose to use a smith machine and remove all elements of stabilisation.
So the smith is completely useless? Phone Post


I never use it.
12/6/12 9:27 PM
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arnanderson - Sounds like you are using a wide stance box squat style of squatting, which is designed for geared powerlifting. If you are not wearing support gear, this style of squatting can beat the hell out of your hips. Try Olympic style squatting or get some briefs



I wouldn't recommend narrow stance squats for LordSeano.

To me it sounds like he has the classic quad dominant/poor glute activation symptoms. Basically glutes don't fire and are weak, quads and lower back do more of the work compensate, hips and hamstrings end up tight and limited in mobility and squatting is very challenging. I see this all the time with tall and lanky folks with desk jobs.

Certainly narrow stance squats can be a goal. But these have less of a glute and hamstring emphasis than wide stance squats and the wide stance squats are going to be quite a bit easier to do properly (upright posture and depth wise) when you do have these hip/ham/glute issues. Keep in mind that these issue probably go back to when LordSeano had some growth spurts as a teenager so it's no small task to correct basically programming in a new way of moving the body and correcting a muscle imbalance with the largest muscles in the body that's probably existed for all of adulthood.

The wide stance squat is more of a 'powerlifting' style of exercise, but that is the point. It's a style of lifting that has the biggest muscles doing the most work and in this case it's the posterior chain (glutes and hams). In LS's case if he does have this glute activation issue, then these muscle will be underdeveloped compared to the quads and lower back and they'll need focus to catch up.

Again, I can't speak too much about the specifics here, but if it is this glute/ham activation problem at its root then I would be training with a corrective focus on glutes/hams.
12/9/12 4:16 AM
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LordSeano
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Just fyi as an update ive now added the following glute activation routine in twice a week and have seen immediate flexibility improvements.

Couch stretch 30 secs each leg
Lunge hip flexor stretch 30 secs each leg
Glute bridges (lying on back and squeeze glutes to go up into arch) 2x10 with 3 secs of isometric hold at top of each rep
'bird dog' pose 2x10 with iso holds (on all fours and extend left leg right arm and vice versa)
Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg.

After a couple of weeks I'll start to add weight to the glute bridges with a barbell

It feels like im doing a 1980s jane fonda workout but seems to be helping. I squat tomorrow so will see then. Phone Post
12/9/12 4:30 AM
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Chocolate Shatner
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definitely do some glute barbell raises when the hottie in yoga pants walks by. Nothing gets her motor running more than seeing some guy who can take her body weight and thrust it upwards over and over and over and....

I need a shower.
12/9/12 11:45 PM
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LordSeano -  Just fyi as an update ive now added the following glute activation routine in twice a week and have seen immediate flexibility improvements.

Couch stretch 30 secs each leg
Lunge hip flexor stretch 30 secs each leg
Glute bridges (lying on back and squeeze glutes to go up into arch) 2x10 with 3 secs of isometric hold at top of each rep
'bird dog' pose 2x10 with iso holds (on all fours and extend left leg right arm and vice versa)
Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg.

After a couple of weeks I'll start to add weight to the glute bridges with a barbell

It feels like im doing a 1980s jane fonda workout but seems to be helping. I squat tomorrow so will see then. Phone Post

"Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg. "

This is good. Also try the crab walks with elastic around your ankles.
12/10/12 4:41 PM
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andyman011
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Invisible Lats Syndrome -
LordSeano -  Just fyi as an update ive now added the following glute activation routine in twice a week and have seen immediate flexibility improvements.

Couch stretch 30 secs each leg
Lunge hip flexor stretch 30 secs each leg
Glute bridges (lying on back and squeeze glutes to go up into arch) 2x10 with 3 secs of isometric hold at top of each rep
'bird dog' pose 2x10 with iso holds (on all fours and extend left leg right arm and vice versa)
Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg.

After a couple of weeks I'll start to add weight to the glute bridges with a barbell

It feels like im doing a 1980s jane fonda workout but seems to be helping. I squat tomorrow so will see then. Phone Post

"Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg. "

This is good. Also try the crab walks with elastic around your ankles.
Hilarious Phone Post
12/10/12 5:08 PM
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LordSeano
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andyman011 -
Invisible Lats Syndrome -
LordSeano -  Just fyi as an update ive now added the following glute activation routine in twice a week and have seen immediate flexibility improvements.

Couch stretch 30 secs each leg
Lunge hip flexor stretch 30 secs each leg
Glute bridges (lying on back and squeeze glutes to go up into arch) 2x10 with 3 secs of isometric hold at top of each rep
'bird dog' pose 2x10 with iso holds (on all fours and extend left leg right arm and vice versa)
Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg.

After a couple of weeks I'll start to add weight to the glute bridges with a barbell

It feels like im doing a 1980s jane fonda workout but seems to be helping. I squat tomorrow so will see then. Phone Post

"Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg. "

This is good. Also try the crab walks with elastic around your ankles.
Hilarious Phone Post
Was it a joke? They look like the sort of exercises i need to do to help unless I'm way off base.

Squatted tonight and whilst my flexibility was much improved my hips still feel beat to fuck now Phone Post
12/10/12 6:52 PM
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andyman011
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LordSeano -
andyman011 -
Invisible Lats Syndrome -
LordSeano -  Just fyi as an update ive now added the following glute activation routine in twice a week and have seen immediate flexibility improvements.

Couch stretch 30 secs each leg
Lunge hip flexor stretch 30 secs each leg
Glute bridges (lying on back and squeeze glutes to go up into arch) 2x10 with 3 secs of isometric hold at top of each rep
'bird dog' pose 2x10 with iso holds (on all fours and extend left leg right arm and vice versa)
Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg.

After a couple of weeks I'll start to add weight to the glute bridges with a barbell

It feels like im doing a 1980s jane fonda workout but seems to be helping. I squat tomorrow so will see then. Phone Post

"Lying adductor raises 2x10 each leg. "

This is good. Also try the crab walks with elastic around your ankles.
Hilarious Phone Post
Was it a joke? They look like the sort of exercises i need to do to help unless I'm way off base.

Squatted tonight and whilst my flexibility was much improved my hips still feel beat to fuck now Phone Post
The elastic crab walks was a joke, and I laughed. Phone Post
12/10/12 9:02 PM
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Invisible Lats Syndrome
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5kUsOQWKjo

Lateral band walks - no joking.
12/11/12 2:41 AM
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LordSeano
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Invisible Lats Syndrome - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5kUsOQWKjo

Lateral band walks - no joking.
Lol yeah i figured that's what you referring to. Phone Post
1/5/13 3:41 PM
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Sippi Boy
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