Leg weights

what do you guys think about stance? wide?

it be pretty difficult to get below parallel with a close stance… lol… but regardless wider is better.

charlie said lots of times. No reason to do front squats or ATG squats.

It can be done though. I squat with feet about shoulder width and because my hips are flexible I have no problem doing full squats ATG. Close stance makes it more quad dominant but I balance it out by stressing my hamstring auxiliary exercises more. Not saying this is the best way, but it’s what I do.

This is the first time I have heard that strength training reps has a degenerative effect on the tendons. That is very interesting. If you could elaborate a little more on this…, that would be great.

And I’ve got to check out this Gregory guy. I’m going to google him.

One area where I least expected to see sprinting ablity, was the distance race walker, who was also internationally ranked at indoor 60meters sprint. He also competed in 10km and 25km walking races.

It goes like this;

  1. Deep squats involve more posterior chain than conventional parralel squats.


  1. Parralel box squats, with wide stance, and powerlifting competition style squats, probably strengthen the glutes and hamstrings atleast as much as deep squats. In these ‘power’ style squats, there is a pronounced forwards lean from the hip, which indeed involves more length tension in hamstrings than slightly more erect parralel squat. Remember that the powerlifters have a vertical shin - even at parralel position (plus forwad lean), plus heavy weight = tremendous hamstring length/tension relationship etc… Olympic deep squat has a very positive shin angle (more relevent to sprinting - some would say.)

  2. The shittiest technique you ever saw some one doing a squat, they was probably doing a quater squat / good morning. And yet, that is a geniuine powerlifting training exercise, and greatly strengthens the hamstrings, but not enough gluteal stimulus compared to box squatting.

  3. Powerlifting style squats and box squats, greatly recruit the posterior chain, but are more taxing to the c.n.s than deep squats.

And that, number 4, is why deep squats probably come up top trumps in the squat debate.

I’m not overly interested in studies comparing ‘deep’ squats to ‘half squats’. There was a debate years ago on this forum about ‘half’ squats. We ended up concluding that one persons ‘half squat’ is another persons ‘quater squat’. And that the ‘half squats’ generally used in studies are more like 'third squats, probably with the strange cue of trying to keep the torso as near to vertical as possible. A novices way of interpreting ‘straight back’. They are rarely true parralel, and so ofcourse their half squats are not going to have a lot of posterior chain recruitment.


Any type of squat can significantly enhance the conditioning and strength of the quadriceps. Even high rep with very light weight, can strengthen quadriceps - which are a very versatile muscle.

But in order for weight training to truly enhance posterior chain strength, you have to add a lot of weight, or go for max acceleration with a medium weight, for say 10 explosive reps. And pause between reps (in standing position) and then lower, and explode back up. The pause allows you to do more for the fast twitch fibers.

If your not moving fast, the only way to add strength and power to posterior chain, is to add a lot of weight. Sounds a trifle obvious, but the same is not allways true for some of the anterior chain muscles such as quadriceps.

Going ‘heavy’ is probably why Loiuse Simmons (West side barbell) is convinced that the squat is hamstring dominant over quads. For his athletes, that might be the case. (Think of the weights they are lifitng, the wide stance, the forwards lean etc… - but they are going parralel.) And as a side note: I have NEVER seen a championship Olympic lifter with greater hamstring developement than a powerlifting champion of similar weight. The powerlifters tend to have bigger hammies, but it is from a large pool of posterior chain exercises. But the need is there, to support the big two powerlifts.

If you cant handle a lot of weight in a deep squat position (some can’t), then try explosive reps with roughly around 60-65% of 1 rep max. Go for the ‘feel’ rather than pedantic about the numbers though. You’ll know when you get the feeling. And then some high pulls with similar %'s. It will feel like “intensive tempo” weight training, if there is such a term.

I did weights for a long time, and I’m not going back to barbell work, but I have to admit, I had some nice results when I occasionally switched to explosive weight training, instead of my usuall ‘grind them out’ reps. If you can’t escape the gym, I seriously recomend cycling with explosive squats, and later; back to general squats at standard bar speed.

My soccer club sent me to a top orthopedic specialist in the UK. He said the biggest problem an athlete encounters when punching/striking/throwing/running etc, at the end of the movement they have no power. This is because their own tendons throughout the whole arm/leg ROM are pulling back with far more force then they can generate with the muscles. Hes noted in some people that putting emphasis on strength training a muscle had negative impacts on the tendons & anyone putting emphasis on muscles than tendons are going the wrong way.

If where led to believe Bolt, Powell & Gay don’t do lower body weights for reps, where is there tendon strength at. If there tendon strength is greater than other competitors surely they have got a massive advantage. This Dr also gave me the “roundabout” %'s in everybody of tendon use vs muscle use to propel a runner forwards. Quite startling.

Also sprint performance is related to muscle fascicle length in male 100-m sprinters.

Isometric training hence (tendon strength) can be used to increase fascicle length in muscles.

Goose, How long do you hold that pause?. I have been “pause” training instead of reps for over a year now.

Your talking about explosive isometrics right?.

You could also add a super-slow set which will take the maximum contraction point at every angle to new extremes.

sorry… but what is an ATG squat?

Ass to grass squats or Ass to ground.

how is this different from a full squat?

Full squats, deep squats, ass to ground squats.

No difference.

EMG analysis study; Squat Vs Deadlift.

Off the top of my head I can think of 5 exercises which activate the Gluteus Maximus more than deadlifts. What does this say about squats?. Look at the analysis.

Overrated IMO.

What about the hams? Any analysis?

Almost no glute activation for squats? What style of squat and deadlift?

The study looked at eight different muscle sites calf, two quadriceps, two hamstrings, glutes, lower back and abs. Seven weightlifters took part in the study and where randomly assigned to either perform an olympic squat (full squat high bar position) or conventional deadlift first (3 reps of their 6 repetition maximum (R.M.)). After a five minuite rest they perfromed the protocol on the other exercise.

All squats had to be hip past the knees which is pretty deep, well past the 90 degree angle of knee flexion considered by some as “parallel”.

The glutes in the squat do not fire untill right at the very bottom of a deep ass squat.

Variations of the deadlift (namely stiff legged deadlifts have been shown to have up to 2x higher levels of activation in all hamstring musculature).

Throw motor unit recruitment into the mix, Result; Deadlift via KO in round 1.

Someone call Barry Ross :smiley:

you guys should show this to tyson, asafa or bolt. Im sure they’ll be taking your graphs into consideration when setting up their “lifting programs” lolz…