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Old 02-20-2015, 04:10 AM   #1
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Default box squats

hey all, so, i recently made a huge health change and due to just general fatigue and such I had to step out of the gym for a while, on top of that, my last workout I pushed it a bit heavy and i hurt my hip/upper glute.. weird spot, anyway. been giving it the Dr.Ho and stretching etc. So i went back into the gym today and did some squats with a light weight and noticed, as expected, body is tight again, but I also noticed my form looked and felt... weird... (perhaps due to my body avoiding the pain in my hip area) So. I grabbed a DB and proceeded to squat down and check form - straighten out my back etc. and noticed I was out of wack, knees caving, couldnt keep myself together. I saw these jump boxes people use for ... jumping lol etc and the only one that put me below paralell was like 3" below... threw a 45lbs plate on it and presto! box!. Started box squatting... and looky! no weird pain in my hip!

Could going too deep with too much weight pulled something? Thats my guess at this point.

Box squats according to eliteFTS are like the bomb diggity for getting super strong butt and hammys and getting out of the hole and learning to go back! (After observation I was doing this hybrid, high bar squat depth low bar position causing some weird angles in my body). How should I cycle them with free squats.. I was thinking like a month on month off sorta deal?

On a funny note... I was doing this, and realized "wow this 135lbs bar is heavy... ive gotten really weak"... turns out 45 mins had gone by of me squatting, adjusting, squatting, DB squat stretching, squatting. LOL tomorrow shall be funny.

tl;dr

Do you like box squats? why or why not.
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Old 02-20-2015, 12:13 PM   #2
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Wide stance box squatting is good for people who have trouble opening up their hips. You can also start on a high box and progressively lower it over a few weeks to build flexibility in the hips and groin, which is great for people who are stuck in a chair all day.

But the truth for raw powerlifters is that too much time focusing on box squatting will actually kill your power out of the hole. If you want to integrate box squats, toss them in for a quick 3 week wave or use them as an assistance movement. Just remember, a box squat is not a squat to a box. It's a different movement. The feet need to be wider than a normal back squat so that you can sit back to the box without having to sit back really far, and you also want to deload onto the box while relaxing the hips but still keeping the core and upper back tight.

I like box squatting I certain cases, but they definitely don't replace normal squatting.
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Old 02-20-2015, 12:16 PM   #3
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I am a break at the knees squatter and box squats typically give me tendonitis because I change my form to accommodate the box.

It's not for everyone, and folks need to know that the inclusion of a box can change their form even if they aren't aware of it. Even if they are aware of it, like me, it still can throw you off. I have to change my form to box squat and it's not a style of squatting that is well suited for my body type.

They are not the bomb diggity for everyone. In fact, I don't advocate squatters use them until they have spent years working of non-box form.

Just my opinion.

I would try box squatting a couple times but no more than 75% of max. Video and see how they feel. If you want to try using them, maybe alternate weeks.

Personal experience will be a good teacher.
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Old 02-20-2015, 03:56 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Soldier View Post
Wide stance box squatting is good for people who have trouble opening up their hips.
when my hips were tighter, I just used a wider PL squat stance without the box for a similar effect.
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Old 02-20-2015, 07:03 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jdmalm123 View Post
when my hips were tighter, I just used a wider PL squat stance without the box for a similar effect.
That will definitely work, but the problem is that in squatting without a box you are placing the most pressure on those muscles at their most stretched. For people who have absolutely no athletic experience or ability and who have not squatted for many, many years, box squatting can be the only way to really squat at all.

Also, the box allows you to monitor and control depth. That way you can progressively stretch those muscles over a longer period of time.
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Old 02-20-2015, 07:39 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Soldier View Post
That will definitely work, but the problem is that in squatting without a box you are placing the most pressure on those muscles at their most stretched. For people who have absolutely no athletic experience or ability and who have not squatted for many, many years, box squatting can be the only way to really squat at all.

Also, the box allows you to monitor and control depth. That way you can progressively stretch those muscles over a longer period of time.
good point about athletic/squat experience.

I used the safety pins to confirm depth.
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Old 02-20-2015, 08:22 PM   #7
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I used to box squat a few years ago. It helped me get used to getting below parallel with the really short box I was using . After awhile I stopped using the box altogether and just go ass to grass on my squats.

I've recommended it to a few guys getting into doing squats, if for nothing else to use a touch and go instead of a stop and go to help them hitting at or below parallel.
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Old 02-20-2015, 09:02 PM   #8
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I would def do them touch and go. Not necessarily sit and let the muscle relax, which I suppose is a typical "Box squat". It would be to make sure in my comfortable stance Im not jamming down and tearing things up as I am fairly confident thats how I got this injury. It would in theory

1) slow the decent down and focus on form, for me, sitting back, KNEES OUT. chest flat.
2)hit box, slam up!
take a breath
repeat

again it was my first day back and I just noticed that I was aggrivating my hip while dropping down. normally in my lowbar stance I get basically to the ground. Im just wondering when I put 245 on and went for it, if the jostling and poor stability of my core and stance just caused the injury. Thus my proposed solution of using the box as a "cue check" off and on.

edit: I do want make sure that my glutes and hams are always tight and ready to reflex so to not compromise the purpose of the squat. EliteFTS' article was saying box squats really help train this movement. Obviously debated but just for gigs here's a link to the article I read.

http://www.elitefts.com/education/tr...our-raw-total/
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Old 02-20-2015, 10:46 PM   #9
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Do you have any video of your squat? I think some of the pain you're getting could be related to over-arching your lower back. I know I used to have pain in my lower back and hip flexors before I learned to not arch my back and brace my core better.

But of course, that's just a theory. Hard to say without seeing your technique.
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Old 02-21-2015, 01:13 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soldier View Post
Do you have any video of your squat? I think some of the pain you're getting could be related to over-arching your lower back. I know I used to have pain in my lower back and hip flexors before I learned to not arch my back and brace my core better.

But of course, that's just a theory. Hard to say without seeing your technique.
Just the one I posted in the form critique thread a long time ago. I could have over arched for that perticular lift as it was heavier than I expected. I did my barbell math wrong... not sure.
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