How to Squat more, Today (and bulletproof for tomorrow)

How to Squat more, Today (and bulletproof for tomorrow)

0 comments / Posted on by Andrew Jansen

How to Squat more, Today (and bulletproof for tomorrow)

Easily the biggest lie, mistruth or just silly statement is 'do squat 300, you do the same things you did to squat 200'. The idea that your body requires the same input is wrong in our opinion (and caused a bunch of missed gains).


Our position - which you should consider

  1. Although load on bar in increased in a linear matter, the shear force and torque at hips is increasing at a far higher level
  2. The more weight - the more torque at hips, and different requirement for the body
  3. The Torque at the hips is higher with a low bar
  4. The more you squat, the higher the demands on the erectors and muscles of the hips

This is part of the reason when trainers start going beyond the 200 mark, they start getting pulled forward more and more often.


How to Squat more, Today (and bulletproof for tomorrow)How to Squat more, Today (and bulletproof for tomorrow)

Images from Squat University


You can see Darwin below, much like many lifters over the 300 mark, he has moved to a wide stance, which greatly lowers the shear forces.

 How to Squat more, Today (and bulletproof for tomorrow)

How to Fix it

In moving my squat beyond 220, I got literally nowhere until the gym bought a reverse hyper, and I started to hugely increase my lower back/erector work.

One day a week I would do reps with a hold at top (5 seconds) the other day I would go heavy.

Heavy KB swings also allow you to place heavy torque on the hips.

Romanians and still legs will also assist.


Squat variants - collect them all

Broadly, you have

  1. High Bar ATG
  2. High Bar parallel
  3. Low Bar ATG
  4. Low Bar parallel

High bar is generally on the traps, low bar on the rear delts. Each one of these places huge demand on the body.

Even if this is not your preferred squat style, there are huge carryover benefits from getting more load onto a bar.

Doing some amount of high bar ATG, even for reps, hugely decreases the load on the hips and lower back, and can allow you to build your quads. Heavy low bar stopped at parallel often leaves the quads out of hypertrophy.


Shear Force

Shear force is 'unaligned forces pushing one part of a body in one specific direction, and another part of the body in the opposite'. For us, thats the bar when it goes forward and is trying to make you good morning.

This tends to happens a few inches above parallel - the fall forward. This is caused (in general) but getting the first few inches assisted by stretch reflex, then running out of momentum.

If you are having this issue a lot, we'd recommend pauses below parallel, or squats off a box.


Wrap Up

Its nothing beyond simple logic, but if you are at a level where the torue and shear forces on your squat are making it hard, consider adding in some work to strengthen you lower back, hips and quads.



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