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Iron Addict 03-16-2011 08:39 PM

Need some advice
Hi everyone I'm new here to the forums and have a question to throw out there to you guys. I'm thinking about ditching back squats for front squats after many years of doing the former. But with back squats when the weight gets heavy I turn the lift into a good morning,straining my lower back which takes away from my deadlifting. I've competed in powerlifting in the past and the squat was always my worst lift, my deadlift was great so it would usually save my total. Anyway to make a long story short can I build decent thighs with less weight on the front squats just interested in what you guys think. Thanks for any advice and glad to be here on the boards.

IronManlet 03-16-2011 08:48 PM

If you Front Squat regularly you'll find that you can build big legs just fine. It places more emphasis on your Quadriceps, so at first you'll find that you won't be going as heavy as with your regular Squat. However, I know some lifters who have both lifts within 50lbs or so of each other, so it all depends on how often you're training them.

After my meet on the 26th I plan to put regular Squats aside as well and concentrate on Front Squats, Push-Presses, and Deadlifts as my primary movements. Guess we'll both figure it out. haha

Squatter 03-16-2011 08:51 PM

Yes, IMO, front squats are the best replacement for back squats when they can't be done for whatever reason. Front squats are lower back friendly:biglifter:

BendtheBar 03-16-2011 08:52 PM

Welcoem to the forum.

If you goal is to build muscle you certainly can focus on front squats.

With that said, you could still use relatively lighter weight on regular squats and go for higher reps or rest pause.

Have you ever posted a video and had other competitors critique your back squat form? I by no means am trying to pull you back to back squats, but just want to make sure that if there is something we can do to fix them, that we make an effort.

Ultimately heavy front squats are just as hard, if not more on the lower back for me. And I have a very strong lower back. Mileage may vary.

Iron Addict 03-16-2011 09:26 PM

Thanks for the replies , the only video I have was back in 2000 in a meet at York Barbell but have really never had anyone critique me since I train alone. I have the classic long femurs and can find when I narrow my stance I actually can handle more weight. I had a bout with pnemonia over Jan and part of Feb so it's really zapped my strength so today I went in and tried 5 sets of 5 on back squats with only 275 and my form was horrific and struggled a great deal. So after that I decided to try front squats for higher reps after that and was pleased to go up to 215 for 8 on my last set while staying upright especially since I haven't done those in at least a few years. Anyway just wondering if it's worth taking some time off on the back squat and focusing on the front. Thanks again.

BigFiveFive 03-16-2011 10:12 PM

Like the other guys said, front squats is indeed going to target different areas of the legs and quads. However, I personally love front squats, I believe it is less stress on my lower back and I can go deeper to still activate the hamstrings and glutes. This exercise is also one of the BEST for core strength as well, which will in return increase the rest of your compound lifts.

big_swede 03-17-2011 04:34 AM

Box squats (to paralell) are also a good alternative to deep squats. And front squats are great, both for leg and core strength!

Good luck and welcome to the forum!!

BendtheBar 03-17-2011 06:55 AM

I would recommend working on your back squat form, even with light no no weight, while using front squats. Perfecting form is something that's ongoing with exercises. As the weight gets heavier, you are forced to constantly work on form.

Get a video up if you can. We would be glad to help.

Iron Addict 03-17-2011 08:07 AM

Thanks guys, I'm not to computer savy to be honest but I'll try and get a vid up.

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