Squat Handles???

Discussion in 'Basic Training Principles and Methods' started by FireFighter, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. FireFighter

    FireFighter New Member

    I was doing squats the other day and I started to realize that holding the bar was placing a stress on my arm that has given me trouble over the years.

    I remember someone around here posted some pictures of a device that allowed you to hold the bar in front of you with the bar still on your back. It was two bars that were somehow attached to the barbell and they ran perpendicular from it on each side of the head.

    Sorry, I know I sometimes suck at descriptions but if anyone can remember something about this I would really appreciate it.

  2. mikeynov

    mikeynov Super Moderator Staff Member

  3. bgates1654

    bgates1654 New Member

    Rippetoes low-bar squat, when executed properly, places little to no load on the arms. The arms, in his squat, function they same way as in the front squat; they are there just to hold the bar in place, while the torso bears the weight.
  4. FireFighter

    FireFighter New Member

    Thanks Mikey....that was exactly what I was looking for. Glad someone could decipher my horrible description.

    I'll do a search for Rippetoes low-bar squat and see what I find.

    Thanks guys
  5. Lol

    Lol Super Moderator Staff Member

    Yeah, once I switched to low-bar back squats with a thumbless grip lots of issues improved for me: no more skin rubbed off my neck, no more neck vertebrae bruising, no more wrist strain, and greatly reduced lower back fatigue.

    It took a month or so before I felt comfortable with the bar lower down on my scapulae and now I do a bit of a shoulder warm-up before getting under the bar. By the time I get to my work sets, the bar sits very comfortably on my adducted scapulae; with my wrists flat and thumbs on top of the bar there is no appreciable load on my hands and wrists. Keeping the elbows up during the squat ensures that the bar can't roll back and as long as you don't lean forward it won't roll towards your neck either.

    Might be worth giving them a try before splashing out on a Top Squat (not that there's anything wrong with that!). [​IMG]
  6. TunnelRat

    TunnelRat Active Member

    (mikeynov @ Aug. 14 2008,2:02)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">I'm guessing this is what you're looking for:

    Dave Draper's Top Squat.</div>
    Yup, I've looked at that gadget due to my continuing shoulder problems. It just seems mighty expensive... [​IMG]
  7. mathey

    mathey New Member

    if you are not using Olympic weights and you have a straight bar without permanent inner collars, you can make a top squat device for about $15-20 using hardware store items...i did this and it works great. I'll post a photo if anyone is interested.
  8. FireFighter

    FireFighter New Member

    Yeah...post some photos please of your homemade contraption. I have a buddy who is pretty creative around the garage, maybe I can show it to him and see what he can come up with.

    Also...can someone post a picture or video of the low-bar positioning.

  9. mikeynov

    mikeynov Super Moderator Staff Member

    (fearfactory @ Aug. 16 2008,8:19)</div><div id="QUOTEHEAD">QUOTE</div><div id="QUOTE">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A6TLa5ICl0Y</div>
    Pretty solid form, imho.

    Rip would tell you two things:

    1) You might actually be a little wide. He advocates a low bar squat, but (edge of) heels at about shoulder width apart.

    2) He would tell you to look down and work on your hip drive out of the bottom.
  10. FireFighter

    FireFighter New Member

    Thanks for the video and all the help....much appreciated
  11. bgates1654

    bgates1654 New Member

    Yeah you are definitely wide. That is much more like a powerlifter squat than the Rippetoe squat. The hip drive issue should be fixed if you do some drills with a TUBOW or some other object that you can place infront of your toe that you can touch your knee with when you squat. The knee should stop moving forward (about tip of the knee over the tip of the toe although this can change due to individual morphologies) about 1/3 to 1/2 of the descent and remain in that position for the remainder of the trip down and the equivalent back up. This allows the hamstring to participate as a primary mover. As the weight got heavier this occurred naturally but there was still a bit of knee wobble which can happen with heavy weight, such as your triples. The TUBOW gives a tactile stimulus during the response so you know what your knees are doing without having to look at them or directly concentrate on them.

    The powerlifting style squat has a more vertical shin which requires that the hips are back further which requires that that the back be more horizontal which minimizes the use of the quads. You can generally move more weight this way, but the idea of the Rippetoe squat is to become stronger overall. The Rippetoe squat requires more knees forward which gives more balanced load to all the muscle groups of the legs. It is very hard to bring the knees forward over the top of the toes with the wide stance of the powerlifting squat so the Rippetoe squat requires a bit closer of a stance.

    On the descent think knees forward and hips backward at the same time. If the knees are over the tips of the toes, the hip are back, the bar is balanced over the middle of the foot, then the back should be at its current angle for the rest of the descent. The shoulders should rise with the hips and vice versa.

    Fixing the &quot;looking down&quot; thing should be easy if you stare at a spot on the floor 6-10 feet in front of you. If that does not work then practice squating with a tennis ball held under your chin. This will help you keep your neck in a neutral position.
  12. FireFighter

    FireFighter New Member

    Thank you for all the advise on the Rippetoe squats. I did them today and felt a world of difference. I also had absolutely no strain on my back like I use to when I did my squats before.

    My back thanks all of you.

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