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Old 01-13-2013, 05:01 PM   #11
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My hammies were also weakest in the chain. Squatting 2-3 times per week helped a lot and I also progressed my RDLs to decent weight and volume, which seemed to make a difference. I tended to use deep lunges as a warm up too.

With good low-back form, the deeper the squat the better the hams get worked. So maybe setting the safety bars on nocth lower is worth a try. You don't have to lift near max to tell if it's working either!!!
Yeah I just started using RDL's as accessory work this cycle or last, I don't remember (old age lol). My depth is pretty much a function of my poor flexibility rather than the safety bar setting. I wish I had the problem of hitting the bars. Gravity with heavy weight helps though haha! But I am slowly getting better with depth.
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:07 PM   #12
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Yeah I just started using RDL's as accessory work this cycle or last, I don't remember (old age lol). My depth is pretty much a function of my poor flexibility rather than the safety bar setting. I wish I had the problem of hitting the bars. Gravity with heavy weight helps though haha! But I am slowly getting better with depth.
That's good, man. No need to rush it but, when the depth comes, you will get new development and performance.

If you don't want to drop weight from the bar, you could always try some reverse bands (or chains) to help you get to depth more safely/confidently.

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Old 01-13-2013, 05:33 PM   #13
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I'm pretty new like you and have done 3 times a week squatting, 5 times a week squatting, twice a week squatting and once a week squatting.

I liked 3 times a week the most (HLM), but I progressed pretty slow. 5 times a week greased the groove the best, but I was beat most of the time and progress was only decent at best, not great. Once a week, I made huge gains in short order, like what I am doing now, but recovery is a lot tougher and gearing up for squat day is maybe more mental than physical because you know it is going to hurt during and after.

Honestly, it's what works for you. Everyone has a troublesome lift that won't be fixed by a cookie cutter program. Deadlifts are that for me.

If I were you, I'd hammer the crap out of squats once a week, then do a medium session somewhere else in the week. Like 5-3-1 plus BBB one day, then front squats or some other variation on deadlift day.

Get your form fairly tight, then beat the snot out of volume. Squats can take a pretty big amount of volume in my opinion.

However, all that said, you can compete right now. No chance your squat will "embarrass" you. Your supposedly "weak" squat will not be out of place in any competition you do. Especially with your good bench and deadlift numbers which will put near the top of your age and weight class almost certainly.

But it's not about winning yet. It's about setting a mark for yourself to beat later.
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Old 01-13-2013, 05:51 PM   #14
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I'm pretty new like you and have done 3 times a week squatting, 5 times a week squatting, twice a week squatting and once a week squatting.

I liked 3 times a week the most (HLM), but I progressed pretty slow. 5 times a week greased the groove the best, but I was beat most of the time and progress was only decent at best, not great. Once a week, I made huge gains in short order, like what I am doing now, but recovery is a lot tougher and gearing up for squat day is maybe more mental than physical because you know it is going to hurt during and after.

Honestly, it's what works for you. Everyone has a troublesome lift that won't be fixed by a cookie cutter program. Deadlifts are that for me.

If I were you, I'd hammer the crap out of squats once a week, then do a medium session somewhere else in the week. Like 5-3-1 plus BBB one day, then front squats or some other variation on deadlift day.

Get your form fairly tight, then beat the snot out of volume. Squats can take a pretty big amount of volume in my opinion.

However, all that said, you can compete right now. No chance your squat will "embarrass" you. Your supposedly "weak" squat will not be out of place in any competition you do. Especially with your good bench and deadlift numbers which will put near the top of your age and weight class almost certainly.

But it's not about winning yet. It's about setting a mark for yourself to beat later.
Yeah Mike I also lked the HLM 3 times a week squatting in a 5x5 format. I progressed very rapidly, 10lbs a week, although it wasn't real as I was squatting above parallel thinking I was doing a great job haha! I need to work on my depth and form with heavyish weight for more volume that I get on 531. I also have to commit to focus HARD on improvement and not just accept the gains when and if they come.

I appreciate your words Mike. And you are right. The first meet is about setting the mark to then improve upon, which is what powerlifting is all about I do need to start practicing some paused benching, as that will be a totally different animal!!
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Old 01-14-2013, 07:36 AM   #15
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Try running 5/3/1 as it's written - 10lbs per month increase to your training max.

If you want to squat twice a week, you could throw them in 5x5 @ 70% after deadlifts, and do your hamstring assistance on your "main" squat day.

EDIT: just saw Mike already made my suggestion... see great minds think alike!
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:00 PM   #16
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I've found the biggest increase in my squats have come from training Sheiko-style. Now, you don't have to follow Sheiko programs, but the ideas and philosophies are a must (personally).

Follow Prilipen's chart, squat two-three times a week (increase this as you get more experienced). You'll be doing a ton of sets (3-6), with relatively low rep numbers (between 1-5 reps per set). Percentages of your 1RM will range from 70-90%. This way you get a ton of practice in a non-fatigued state, really perfecting your technique. Additionally, all that volume really builds your overall work capacity.

From what I've seen so far on the forums, a lot of people seem to be very American style of training oriented, and with that comes technique? I've found that switching my technique from flat shoe/sitting back to olympic shoe/sitting down, my raw squat has skyrocketed.

My overall aim is to transition off of Sheiko numbered programs and design my own cycles in the same philosophy. I'd also like to move into squatting 4 times per week overall. This will take a great deal of knowledge on how to manage volumes on a daily weekly and monthly level.

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Old 01-15-2013, 02:19 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by mr_bigmuscles View Post
Try running 5/3/1 as it's written - 10lbs per month increase to your training max.

If you want to squat twice a week, you could throw them in 5x5 @ 70% after deadlifts, and do your hamstring assistance on your "main" squat day.

EDIT: just saw Mike already made my suggestion... see great minds think alike!
Thanks for the comments Mr Big Appreciate the input!

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I've found the biggest increase in my squats have come from training Sheiko-style. Now, you don't have to follow Sheiko programs, but the ideas and philosophies are a must (personally).

Follow Prilipen's chart, squat two-three times a week (increase this as you get more experienced). You'll be doing a ton of sets (3-6), with relatively low rep numbers (between 1-5 reps per set). Percentages of your 1RM will range from 70-90%. This way you get a ton of practice in a non-fatigued state, really perfecting your technique. Additionally, all that volume really builds your overall work capacity.

From what I've seen so far on the forums, a lot of people seem to be very American style of training oriented, and with that comes technique? I've found that switching my technique from flat shoe/sitting back to olympic shoe/sitting down, my raw squat has skyrocketed.

My overall aim is to transition off of Sheiko numbered programs and design my own cycles in the same philosophy. I'd also like to move into squatting 4 times per week overall. This will take a great deal of knowledge on how to manage volumes on a daily weekly and monthly level.
Thanks Paradox, I have decided on tweaking the 531 into a 321 with multiple top sets, and some extra squatting on deadlift day.

Want to elaborate a little more on what you mean by sitting back vs sitting down? I had a real hard time sitting back flat footed so I purchased oly lifting shoes which helped tremendoulsy, but I still find myself having issues with sitting back. From what I have been told, my first cue is breaking at the hips.
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:28 PM   #18
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I've found the biggest increase in my squats have come from training Sheiko-style. Now, you don't have to follow Sheiko programs, but the ideas and philosophies are a must (personally).

Follow Prilipen's chart, squat two-three times a week (increase this as you get more experienced). You'll be doing a ton of sets (3-6), with relatively low rep numbers (between 1-5 reps per set). Percentages of your 1RM will range from 70-90%. This way you get a ton of practice in a non-fatigued state, really perfecting your technique. Additionally, all that volume really builds your overall work capacity.

From what I've seen so far on the forums, a lot of people seem to be very American style of training oriented, and with that comes technique? I've found that switching my technique from flat shoe/sitting back to olympic shoe/sitting down, my raw squat has skyrocketed.

My overall aim is to transition off of Sheiko numbered programs and design my own cycles in the same philosophy. I'd also like to move into squatting 4 times per week overall. This will take a great deal of knowledge on how to manage volumes on a daily weekly and monthly level.
Listen to this guy!
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:29 PM   #19
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I'd love to elaborate more!

Firstly, I'd like to edit that comment. I shouldn't just assume most of the forum is "American" style of training. It's still a small sample size I've yet to see! Anyway, from what I've seen on the internet, technique on the squat can essentially be broken into two techniques or styles.

1) American. This is the style popularized by Louie Simmons and Westside Barbell, where you break at the hips, sit back, and don't let the knee travel over the toes. Now, this is obviously difficult when squatting raw, but the American approach still tries to limit the knee traveling. Most of what I've read on the internet is this style of squatting, as most websites are American and promoting a westside type squat.

2) Russian/European/Whatever. This style of squat allows for you to almost break at the knees and hips simultaneously and sit down. Your knees will travel farther forward, and you'll get a ton more quad activation. If you're squatting a lot, you might get a bit of pain underneath your knee cap, but that's from your quads tightening up. You won't blow a kneecap out anytime soon, so don't worry lol. Here's a video of someone sitting down instead of back:

Malanichev. SQUAT. The 2nd hard workout in the new season. 28 february 2011. - YouTube

I hope I'm not stepping on any toes here, but from personal experience the "Russian" style of squatting is far superior WHEN RAW. I have a lot easier time getting depth, it feels more natural, and overall has been beneficial for my squat. I took a hit in numbers for about a month, but I've since caught up and love it. Does that help? I can try to explain better if needed.
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Old 01-15-2013, 02:30 PM   #20
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Thanks, man. This is all recent personal experience for myself lol.
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