August 18, 2005

8 responses to Week 34: First free squats max and a floor press PR

  1. jon Says:

    Congrats on your floor press pr. Those heavy weighted side bends are awesome - especially helpful for deadlifting.

  2. Alberto Caraballo Says:

    First off, congratulations on the new PR and welcome back. I thought the vacation was getting TOO good for you:)
    The artcle Causal Friday by Jim Wendler sounds like just the ticket for you. Excellent for raw squatters, it answers that question you have about sitting too far back.

  3. Kris Says:

    Thanks guys! Will look into the Wendler article as soon as I get back from Sweden. Here with the family for a couple of days.

  4. Kris Says:

    Found the article. A must read for all raw squatters, thanks Alberto!

  5. Guy the Canadian Says:

    hi there kris, just happened across your site, one thing regarding your squat form which i noticed in your video, was how high you had the bar on your back, or so it appeared to me, maybe it was just hidden under your pony tail….anyways it might be one of the reasons why your being pushed forward at the bottom of your squat, but as you mentioned a weak midsection might just be the problem for that…so in conclusion, try and have the bar sit a little further back, since you aren’t very thick in the shoulders, try and get the narrowest grip you can when squatting, you should have to force your body in between your hands, this will help form the “shelf” that guys talk about, also just do that on max attempts, doing it too much during training will wreak havoc on your shoulders….

  6. Kris Says:

    Guy, thanks for the helpful suggestions! I certainly keep the bar far above the legal limit and, as you point out, lack of upper back thickness makes it hard to go that low. Will try your suggestion of narrowing the grip width to get a better shelf, thanks! That said, the relatively high bar position should make it easier to stay upright, not vice versa. The lower the bar goes, the lower the center of gravity, but at the same time the stronger the tendency to be pushed forward. I have been doing some Manta Ray squats of late, and the really high bar position does indeed make it much easier for me to stay upright.

    As Judd Biasiotto puts it in Power, pp. 36:

    The problem with a low bar placement is that it’s hard to keep your back erect - it doesn’t look pretty either. Fortunately, there are no points subtracted for “ugly” and with practice, you can learn to keep your back fairly close to vertical.

    Practice it is. Will try to get the bar down much lower next time I squat to see what happens.

  7. Guy the Canadian Says:

    Interesting…as I have found the exact opposite with myself! but I’ll most likely blame that on our differences on body type. me being short and thick (1.8m 5′11″, 121.5k, 268lbs) also with my lack of flexibility, I find myself most comfortable with a low bar placement and a fairly wide stance…Also while i was reading on one day I came across the point that it shouldn’t be so much “low” on the back as it should be “back” on the upper back, which is just a result from having a thicker upper back…So short answer: thicken up those shoulders…long answer: keep messing with the technique which gives you the best advantage…as with all these things in lifting it all comes down to lots of trial and error

  8. Kris Says:

    When did 1.8m become defined as short? ;-) I am 1.83m myself, but a good 20kg lighter than you.

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