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Pro Tips | Squats


Squatting has become one of the most unnatural… (uncomfortable may be a better choice of words) movements in the gym.  Even without a bending barbell resting on your traps, a bodyweight squat for most looks pretty awful. For those of you who are more experienced with this ancient test of performing a movement we were born to do with ease, it’s now time to turn to the pro’s. For everyone else who feels like they’re going to be broken in half under the barbell, check out Instant Training Tips | Daily Squat and Mobility. This week our Powerlifting Pro’s got together to discuss how to add more weight to your squat today! Don’t miss these tips.


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“The most common flaw beyond program design and not varying style of Squat is 'falling forward' with poor torso angle. This is primarily the result of insufficient strength of the rectus abdominus and dynamic flexibility of the hips and ankles. For optimal develop and improving lower body strength, ensure the core is activated prior to resistance training and concentrate on hip and thoracic spine mobility as well using a weight with which you can manage proper form.” – John Davies | Founder of Renegade Training


“You may have a belt, but nature already gave you one! Want to top out your squat? Get that spine right... Given you're well balanced in the posterior chain (*cough*glute weakness*cough*)... most squats are drastically lost in the spine and for the sake of quality and safety, spinal strength can assist drastically in the development of appropriate range of motion. Treat that back like glass, temper it to no end using various core movements and assistance such as Snatch Grip Deadlifts, Good Mornings, Glute Ham work, Reverse Hyper, etc.” – Rob Saeva | Professional Strength and Conditioning Coach and Amateur Powerlifter


“Starting in an unhinged position at the waist and knees doesn't allow one to properly stabilize or lock in the core before squatting. Tell the body how you want to finish and "stand tall" first by flexing quads and squeezing glutes through so hips lock fully under the bar. If you do this prior to inflating and locking in the core creating proper infra abdominal pressurization (IAP), it locks on the pelvis orientation. With the pelvis locked and stabilized with IAP, it will eliminate butt wink and improve power transfer resulting in immediate gains.” – Chris Duffin | World Record holding Powerlifter and Strength Coach


“When you get to the bottom of your squat, force your knees to push out and open up your hips. I see a lot of lifter’s knees cave in right out of the hole and you lose a lot of force and stability that way. “Knees out" is one of my favorite cues for squatting because it works regardless of what your stance is.” – Kyle Sheridan | Record Holding Powerlifter


“Most lifters know to get and hold their air in. That’s nothing new. What you should be looking for is; where is the lifter holding the air? The air should be held in the stomach and not the chest. This is often a beginner mistake that can cause the lifter to be unstable. When watching, you should visibly see the stomach fill with air and the chest should not move. You should use that air to press against your belt to help keep your core tight and body stable.” – Jonathan Byrd | Elite Level Powerlifter 


Let us know how these tips worked for you and share your own on any of our social channels.  #LiveModern and #BeUltimate!


TEAM USPlabs and World Record Holder Chris Duffin


Prepared by TEAM USPlabs





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