Assault on The Squat!

This article is about strategies I’m using to strengthen my back squat

I’m obsessed with the back squat exercise.There’s something about this movement that makes me want more. Maybe it’s because the back squat was one of the first movements I’ve done in the weight room. I squatted before I ever benched or deadlifted. The joy I feel for an improved back squat surpasses that of any other lift.

The back squats is an awesome movement that hits nearly every muscle in your body and has a positive effect on testosterone and HGH production. It’s also an empowering movement because you’re overcoming the force of gravity to move something that’s meant to keep you down.

My current one rep max is 355 lbs but I’m determined to increase it. I’m using the high bar method for my back squat which means putting the bar on top of my traps. I’ve been told switching to the low bar stance will help me move more weight but I’m determined to see how far I can get with the high bar method.

Even though there’s many exercises that will help you boost your squat, the best way to improve your squat is to squat. Depending on your fitness needs, you can modify lifts in your favor.

Plan of Attack:

One of the best ways to get better at something is to attack your weaknesses and see how it can become a strength. With the back squat, two things I have to work on is bar speed and just getting out of the hole ( the bottom position of the squat). I’m using two squatting methods to attack these weak points.

Bar Speed: To improve my speed in the squat movement, I’ve been using Compensatory Acceleration Training (CAT) squats. This method involves setting up the barbell at 55-60% of your one rep max. In this method, the lowering portion of the squat is done in a controlled manner. The concentric/ rising part of the squat is done as explosively as possible. Imagine yourself as a rocket being launched when rising in the squat.By trying to move as explosively as possible, you’re teaching your body to contract/ activate your muscle fibers quickly. The faster your muscle fibers activate, the more explosive your movement will be. Increasing my squat speed means I feel less strain in the movement.

Getting out of The Hole: The hardest part of the squat is the bottom position. If you can increase improve your ability to get past the bottom of your squat, the easier the lift will be. In order to get more comfortable at the bottom of the squat, I’ll be doing a lot of pause squats. Pause squats also teach you how to brace your core through out the lift. It also forces you to rely on pure strength rather than momentum. Paused squats have helped me in the past so I’m confident it’ll help me again.

To Be Continued….

Author: Chris Ameto

I'm passionate about health and fitness. I want to use my personal experience and countless hours of research to help you reach your fitness goals.

6 thoughts on “Assault on The Squat!”

  1. I’m with you on that. The squat is my favorite lift, and it has been since high school. (That makes the two of us odd-balls.) I went to a powerlifting meet my senior year, and was sitting nicely in the standings after squats. After bench, I’d dropped way down. After deadlift, I might as well have not gone! I’m 43, and I still squat at least twice a week.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice post! I love squats. Pause squats really helped me in my squat endeavors. I have loved squatting so much I ran smolov a few times (which took my squat from a 1rm of 345 to squatting 425 to 10 sets of 3 repetitions). I have found bulgarian split squats and single leg presses my favorite accessory movements. If those go up, so do my squat. Anyways, nice choice of exercises and keep up the good work!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey!
      I completely agree with you about Bulgarian split squats. They’ve helped my squats a lot. Those are some impressive numbers. I might have to try Smolov one of these days. I’ve heard good things about it. Thanks!

      Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s