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Old 07-25-2011, 09:45 PM   #1
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Default Teaching Females Technique

I am working on training my fiance how to squat, deadlift and bench in order to help her become stronger for running, with the focus mainly on squat and deadlifts because push ups are still a good workout for her.

That said, I was curious if anyone had any suggestions how to teach a female how to squat and deadlift. I am not claiming that men automatically have better form, but I'm sure different teaching techniques that work better.

As for squats, I currently have her doing box squats off a bench at the gym that is parallel for her because she can not reach parallel with weight on her back yet. However she can squat 95 x 2 off the box.

For deadlifts I used an idea given to me by jwood and had her hold a 25lb plate and deadlift that way to help teach her to keep her knees out and back up. I tried this technique tonight and it worked quite well and she was able to deadlift 75 x 5 for five sets with semi decent form. Just a note she says she feels more comfortable pulling sumo as opposed to conventional.

Sorry this is so wordy. Any advice you can offer to me and to other members is much appreciated!
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Old 07-25-2011, 10:08 PM   #2
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I've honestly never had to teach a female anything in weightlifting, but I have made some observations off things I've read and seen:

- I've never seen a girl pull conventional, always sumo

- Mark Rippetoe (I think?) said girls are way easier to teach deadlift and squat than men, apparently they're really good at sticking their butts out .
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Old 07-25-2011, 10:14 PM   #3
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I teach my wife the basics of squatting by asking her to squat naturally to pick up a quarter. If she sees the squat as a lift with a heavy bar on her back she hesitates a bit. I ask her to squat naturally, and then when she comes up to focus on 2 things:

1) Lifting her butt up.
2) Leading with her head.

The box squat is also a good starting point. Just make sure she leads with her head.

Far too often you see women taught the knees forward, unnatural squat:





They need to be more:



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Old 07-25-2011, 10:24 PM   #4
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Thanks for the pointers! She is joining me for squats on Thursday so I will definitely keep those pointers in mind.
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Old 07-25-2011, 11:13 PM   #5
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I've heard that women are much better at listening and following direction. Of course this usually flies out the window when it's your own wife/girlfreind.
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Old 07-25-2011, 11:36 PM   #6
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I've had great success with the goblet squat. I taught my lady as Dan John explains it. In 2 weeks she was doing back and front squats.

I taught her the RDL first. Deadlift was easy after that.
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Old 07-26-2011, 09:35 AM   #7
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Lucky for me, my girlfriend was a college athlete. That being said, she still has an aversion to heavy weight.

She can knock out goblet squats all day long, but load an empty bar on her back and its like all her natural ability goes out the window. We only do box squats as she has needed 4 knee surgeries after a soccer accident, but they are starting to come along.

Deadlifts, she WONT pull sumo. I have a hard enough time getting her to widen her stance to hip width. She's pulling more than her bodyweight now, and its happened pretty steadily for her. The key was getting her to want to see progression.

For technique on these two, my cues are usually T*ts up, and butt out. Once she's not slumped over, she does pretty well with just that.
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Old 07-26-2011, 05:36 PM   #8
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Thank you for the suggestions. I'll have her try goblet squats Thursday, and keep working on box squats from there.
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Old 07-28-2011, 02:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boucher View Post
I am working on training my fiance how to squat, deadlift and bench in order to help her become stronger for running, with the focus mainly on squat and deadlifts because push ups are still a good workout for her.

That said, I was curious if anyone had any suggestions how to teach a female how to squat and deadlift. I am not claiming that men automatically have better form, but I'm sure different teaching techniques that work better.

As for squats, I currently have her doing box squats off a bench at the gym that is parallel for her because she can not reach parallel with weight on her back yet. However she can squat 95 x 2 off the box.

For deadlifts I used an idea given to me by jwood and had her hold a 25lb plate and deadlift that way to help teach her to keep her knees out and back up. I tried this technique tonight and it worked quite well and she was able to deadlift 75 x 5 for five sets with semi decent form. Just a note she says she feels more comfortable pulling sumo as opposed to conventional.

Sorry this is so wordy. Any advice you can offer to me and to other members is much appreciated!
I never pull sumo just can't get used to it...anyway, teach her the same way you'd teach anyone else, male or female. Find out if she is better at visual learning; I am, and it means if I watch someone I can then replicate what I see...but she also needs to understand the important underlying principles of the head position, back tightness etc before she really gets down to just going through the motions.

There is also a point in the female menstrual cycle where a female is more prone to injury due to increases in the various hormones; I have a link somewhere, not sure if it's on here...if not, I'll see if I can locate it and post it up, it's worth her taking the time to read it.


Here you go, I found it:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/6354303.stm
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Old 07-28-2011, 10:30 PM   #10
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Thanks 5k! It is great to get feedback from a female. I will make sure to show her that article. She was always a cross country runner so the weight room is still foreign to her, but as long as work allows it she has been joining me at the gym so I guess that's a start!
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