Monday, March 10, 2014
Advice on squatting:
-Squat frequently in some variation or another. It doesn't necessarily need to be heavy all the time. But squatting heavy and squatting frequently should be done on a consistent basis in some way or fashion.
-Squat as deep as physically possible. This includes unloaded and loaded settings. If you can squat perfectly ass to grass without a load, then why wouldn't you with a load? Do you catch heavy cleans and snatches above parallel? Then don't train yourself to squat to that depth. If your reason to quarter squats is that you are "scared" that you won't be able to get out of the bottom, take some weight off and re-train your squat. Start light and build to where you are ONLY able to sit down in the bottom position for 5 seconds before standing on each rep. That'll unscare you.
-Have one squat stance, for everything. Front squats, back squats, overhead squats, goblet squats, air squats, squat cleans, squat snatches, squatting to eat, squatting to dump (shout out to squatty potty), squatting to pick up a heavy stone/object/child. The width of your feet and angle of your toes should be equivalent on all these lifts whether light or heavy. Why? Because you should never compromise range of motion and Because Greg Everett says so
-Increase your squat so that you can increase your clean, your snatch and your overall strength. Its magical how that happens.
Ways to improve your squat:
-If you are unable to squat deep, find out why and address your issues. Ankles, hips, quads, everything tight? Smash the tissue, mobilize and stretch those bad boys out consistently. 30 years of terrible posture/positions and lack of/non-exsistent stretching and mobilization won't be un-done with one or two 10 minute mobility sessions every other week. It takes consistent exposure to the stretching and mobilizing of your tissues to really make a change AND it takes pressure. Heavy med balls on the chest, barbells, thick PVC pipes, super friends, all these are excellent tools to really get ourselves into better positions. Don't think your body weight is enough, because its not. If a foam roller gives you pain, you should be embarrassed. If you don't have time, make time. If you can't make time, its not that important to you so stop complaining to your coach.
-Sit in the bottom of the squat more. If you suck at something, put yourself into that position more often to improve that position. This can be accumulating time throughout the day in the bottom of your squat. Start with 10 minutes a day then move onto 20 and 30, its amazing how much your squat will improve the more time you spend down there.
-Adding tempos to your loaded squats helps build the type of body awareness needed to know where your bottom position is. If you need someone to tell you whether you're squatting deep enough or not, most likely you aren't, luckily for you this drill will help. Like stated above, sit in the bottom for 3-10 seconds to really learn how to sit comfortably in YOUR deepest possible position. If you can't find comfort down there, its a mobility problem, address it and fix it. Use this drill until you no longer have to ask someone whether your at depth or not, find comfort and confidence in your rock solid bottom position.
Squat deep and heavy more often. Get strong.