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Started By Brotheric (Muskego, WI., U.S.A.)

Started on: 10/30/2005 9:53:13 PM, viewed 560 times
Need advice for doing squats.

O.K., here′s my problem. First let me tell you I LOVE going to positive failure on all my excercises, and am very familiar with what actual failure is, except when doing squats. I do have a spotting cage, and am very confident in it, but when I get to the second rep or so from positive failure when coming down to the bottom position it′s like a switch goes off and I go completely weak and drop the weight on the spotting bars. It′s very frustrating because I know I have enough left for two or more really good stimulating reps. I would really like to fail while I′m actually pressing upward you know? One more thing I have noticed, when I watch myself performing them in the mirror, I′m really not getting my legs parallel to the floor. Should I be? I′m really not that comfortable with the squat as an excercise, to be honest, and i′m thinking I might be using too much weight and should go a little slower. I don′t know. Anyone else ever have this problem? By the way I′ve just gotten started with squats and the weight is only 165# For 16 reps. I′m 160# I tell you, my legs sure are feelin it though!!!


This Topic has 5 Replies: Displaying out of Replies:

dafortae (a, a, U.S.A.) on 11/15/2005 4:28:15 PM

Hi Dave,

I hope you′re still around to read this!

Yes, I know EXACTLY what you mean. I too, am very weak at the parallel position (and below). I′ve decided to drop the weight, and do the squats properly (meaning more slowly as well). There are obviously some weak muscles or weak positions for both of us with a certain range of motion. Arthur Jones did quite a bit of research with muscle strength ranges. He found out that someone can get VERY strong with a limited (partial) range, but be extremely weak with the same movement in another range. It was even true for an isolation exercise like lower back extensions! This means there′s much more to strength and movement than what we all have though.

I think one may be leverage disadvantages. I personally have slightly longer legs for my height, compared to my torso. I think having longer, thinner legs like that makes it difficult to go to parallel and lower. But, I′ve decided for myself I′d rather be stronger through the full range of movement rather than just a partial range. I hate feeling so weak at the bottom position, like if I was moving heavy furnature and had to squat way down to pick it up because of how it was shaped.


Brotheric (Muskego, WI., U.S.A.) on 11/15/2005 7:32:28 PM

Yep I′ve been checking regularly for a response and am glad to hear from you, I really like to read your thoughts on things. I also have longer legs and what you have said makes perfect sense. I have lightened up and slowed down and we will see how it goes. Thank you for responding. Dave

Joey (Brisbane, qld, Australia) on 11/15/2005 8:11:26 PM


Another hint I would suggest would be to flare your toes out a little. When I squat my knees would start to buckle on the way up on the last few reps. Since I started to flair my toes out, I can squat deeper and it feels more natuaral for me, especially when the weight gets heavy. McRoberts′ book "the insider′s tell all handbook on weight training technique" recommends this.

dafortae (a, a, U.S.A.) on 11/15/2005 10:01:56 PM


Great! Joey gave some good advice there as well! It′s always best to do what′s "natural" feeling with the movement. Otherwise, you may end up getting an injury. They bodybuilding magazines tell you to do all kinds of crazy things, like vary the angle of your feet, bend your knees a certain way, etc (all dangerous). You should always do it in a "natural" fashion, to help avoid injury. Now the squat itself IS completely unnatural as an exercise to me, but no one can deny it′s benefits.


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