Proper form vs. muscle gain question

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    Proper form vs. muscle gain question


    For squats does going low help with muscle development or people who do 3/4 squats, for example, losing out on more than just form?

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    this is a constant argument between bb and plers. but in my experience the lower you go the harder it is and the more sore yuo can get. plus once you break parallel you are using more muscles like hammies, glutes and all that good stuff. imo always go below parallel, it's a whole body lift
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    Yeah, I go below but I see guys with big legs do 'incorrect squats' and always wondered if it was more genetics helping them along or if you could get the same benefit from not dropping as low.
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    their quads are strong, but have them drop below parrallel and i bet they couldnt do half the weight, the hammies wouldnt be able to handle the load
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    I agree. There is this dynamic duo in my gym who squat pretty heavy weights but don't even hit parallel and they are all excited, out of breath and high fiving each other like retards...... I am not so sure what they are all excited about... oh and by the way, their calves are like tooth picks... hahaha
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    This was brought up recently on another forum that isn't even for weightlifting, the general feeling by them was that using the full range of movement is bad form because it can cause joint pain, I personally feel if you're going to do squats you may aswell do the full range and if you then want to add 3/4 movement afterwards then fine. Full range = maximum muscle use and that's what I'm going for.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronin13
    I agree. There is this dynamic duo in my gym who squat pretty heavy weights but don't even hit parallel and they are all excited, out of breath and high fiving each other like retards...... I am not so sure what they are all excited about... oh and by the way, their calves are like tooth picks... hahaha
    Hey! Don't make fun, mine are tiny too and my thighs are good size, poor genetics on my part.
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    Sorry man. Not poking fun at genetics. They just come in and do everything upper body with good form and then these half azz squats and no calf work at all... triceps and shoulders are huge though... go figure.

    Quote Originally Posted by PVSkyHigh
    Hey! Don't make fun, mine are tiny too and my thighs are good size, poor genetics on my part.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronin13
    but don't even hit parallel and they are all excited, out of breath and high fiving each other like retards......
    ROFLMAO
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    Here's a good classic answer to the above question:

    http://www.irongame.com/videos/TomPl...Exhibition.wmv


    Also check out who else is all in the video.
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    You can do partial range squats, use the box. Just raise the box 4-5 holes above your typical height (should usually be 1 hole below parallel). Works well when you're training in briefs with a load that is hard to work all the way down.

    As far as bodybuilding goes, doing partial squats with extra weight like that is putting more stress on the core than anything else. Not what most bodybuilders want. Easy way to rack up back and shoulder injuries too.
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    Proper form vs. muscle gain question

    Depends if you are trying to work yout quads, your hamstrings or both



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    I alternate. Lighter weights below parallel one day, heavier weights less than parallel another with extra SLDL's and lunges to hit the hammies and glutes. Doing squats at 3/4's is much better than doing no squats and sitting on your ass at home watching TV and eating potato chips IMO.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ronin13
    I agree. There is this dynamic duo in my gym who squat pretty heavy weights but don't even hit parallel and they are all excited, out of breath and high fiving each other like retards...... I am not so sure what they are all excited about... oh and by the way, their calves are like tooth picks... hahaha
    My gym has those people as well. I was watching a guy who kept loading more and more plates but would just go down about 4 inches, he stopped at 4 plates per side. He seemed all proud of it. Now I actually get compliments from the local pros for my squat form (ATG style) so I guess im doing something right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cubbybear
    Here's a good classic answer to the above question:

    http://www.irongame.com/videos/TomPl...Exhibition.wmv


    Also check out who else is all in the video.
    The only ones that I could really recognize were Kaz and Dr. Squat Fred Hatfield. Tom Platz was a beast.

    For squats I go to parallel or a bit below. I'm more concerned with putting the pressure on my hamstrings and glutes and not my quads, so I tend to sit back a bit more when I squat. Of course, going to a commercial gym, I love the stares I get when I use the power rack for what it was actually made for.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bpmartyr
    I alternate. Lighter weights below parallel one day, heavier weights less than parallel another with extra SLDL's and lunges to hit the hammies and glutes. Doing squats at 3/4's is much better than doing no squats and sitting on your ass at home watching TV and eating potato chips IMO.

    I do almost this. In a 7-8 day period I try to hit legs twice, one time going heavy as possible to around top-of-the-quad parallel with the ground to alittle past that, and one time going lighter weight pause squats with the bottom (where the pause happens on the safety bars) being the absolute lowest possible stance I can go. I try to keep all reps to 4-6 per set, and work up to around 5-6 sets.

    The light pause squat day definately helps increase lagging hammys/glutes if need be as well as improving flexibility for getting a nice low squat (I like going with a wider stance...not sumo, but not shoulder width either), and the heavy day is, well, the meat and potatoes.
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    Some people gain muscle in spite of themselves....


    Kinda like my company makes money in spite of itself....
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    Quote Originally Posted by UHCougar05
    I love the stares I get when I use the power rack for what it was actually made for.
    You mean barbell curls, right
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    Quote Originally Posted by guyfromkop2
    their quads are strong, but have them drop below parrallel and i bet they couldnt do half the weight, the hammies wouldnt be able to handle the load
    +1

    I don't see the point of doing squats any other way. You are trying to build LEG strength...which to me means the entire leg.
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    For someone who's have chronic lower back injuries, i find it extremely difficult to go below or even to parallel on the squat. Every time i get close to parallel, i can feel something about to pull even with relatively light weight. In this circumstance would going to 3/8 be better then doing nothing at all?
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    Yes sir.
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    Quote Originally Posted by david4zero8
    For someone who's have chronic lower back injuries, i find it extremely difficult to go below or even to parallel on the squat. Every time i get close to parallel, i can feel something about to pull even with relatively light weight. In this circumstance would going to 3/8 be better then doing nothing at all?
    In my case it did. I had some major back problems and couldn't squat unless I used something like a free motion machine that supported my back. I had to use really light weight (I'm talking embarassing weight). I have eventually worked up the weight and now I'm starting over with light free weights. I find that if I neglect exercises like squats my back tends to get worse in the long run. With this type of stuff I just really pay attention to the TYPE of pain that I feel. If I feel the OH ****, I SHOULDNT HAVE DONE THAT pain I make note of it and back off some next time.

    A little off the subject, but make sure to really stretch out your hammies. You'll be surprised how much that can help your lower back if you're not already doing that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stxnas
    In my case it did. I had some major back problems and couldn't squat unless I used something like a free motion machine that supported my back. I had to use really light weight (I'm talking embarassing weight). I have eventually worked up the weight and now I'm starting over with light free weights. I find that if I neglect exercises like squats my back tends to get worse in the long run. With this type of stuff I just really pay attention to the TYPE of pain that I feel. If I feel the OH ****, I SHOULDNT HAVE DONE THAT pain I make note of it and back off some next time.

    A little off the subject, but make sure to really stretch out your hammies. You'll be surprised how much that can help your lower back if you're not already doing that.
    Are you talking about a pre workout stretch of the hammies or post? I usually do all my stretching post workout including the hamstrings on leg days.

    I workout at home so i basically only workout with free-weights.

    I'm not 100% sure if it's the lower back that's giving me the problem during the squat movement, but looking through an anatomy chart it might be the gluteus medius muscle. I feel the pain in the medial portion of the rear hip bone.
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    I have found since I started good mornings and deadlifts(both were started with very light weight for several weeks) the lower back pain subsided by a huge amount.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayhawkk
    I have found since I started good mornings and deadlifts(both were started with very light weight for several weeks) the lower back pain subsided by a huge amount.
    I was thinking about adding good mornings to my routine. What does your back routine consist of? I did deadlifts for a good year and a half or so, but the muscle injury kept coming into play and i would pull it ever so often, so i left it out of my current routine. I do partial stiff legged deadlifts though on leg days.
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    Lots of light stretch warmups. About 3-4 sets of bar only reps. then 2-4 more sets with light weight still. Nothing over 50% of my max.

    Deadlifts
    Squats(box squats have helped a lot)
    Rack Pulls
    Leg extensions
    Hamstring curls
    Hack squats
    Smith machine squats to allow me to walk out from the bar and focus on my quads


    I mix and match them but with my back injuries i'm taking it slow. My gains have come and my back pains are slowly decreasing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by david4zero8
    Are you talking about a pre workout stretch of the hammies or post? I usually do all my stretching post workout including the hamstrings on leg days.
    For a while I was stretching EVERY DAY (even off days) and before and after my work outs. I don't stretch that often before work outs anymore, but I do like to warm up with 5-10 minutes of slow cardio to get the blood flowing. If I'm still tight after that I will stretch out my hammies berfore jumping into the weights.

    I have also recently added good mornings to my routine and basically do a lot of the same stuff that Jayhawk does (still afraid of deads though).

    I would even suggest trying yoga and or pilates for the back if you can get over the stigma of them. I have them available for free with my digital cable so I do it when the wife isn't home or is in the other room.
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    Acute muscle stretching inhibits muscle strength endurance performance.

    * Nelson AG,
    * Kokkonen J,
    * Arnall DA.

    Department of Kinesiology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803, USA. anelso@lsu.edu

    Since strength and muscular strength endurance are linked, it is possible that the inhibitory influence that prior stretching has on strength can also extend to the reduction of muscle strength endurance. To date, however, studies measuring muscle strength endurance poststretching have been criticized because of problems with their reliability. The purpose of this study was twofold: both the muscle strength endurance performance after acute static stretching exercises and the repeatability of those differences were measured. Two separate experiments were conducted. In experiment 1, the knee-flexion muscle strength endurance exercise was measured by exercise performed at 60 and 40% of body weight following either a no-stretching or stretching regimen. In experiment 2, using a test-retest protocol, a knee-flexion muscle strength endurance exercise was performed at 50% body weight on 4 different days, with 2 tests following a no-stretching regimen (RNS) and 2 tests following a stretching regimen (RST). For experiment 1, when exercise was performed at 60% of body weight, stretching significantly (p < 0.05) reduced muscle strength endurance by 24%, and at 40% of body weight, it was reduced by 9%. For experiment 2, reliability was high (RNS, intraclass correlation = 0.94; RST, intraclass correlation = 0.97). Stretching also significantly (p < 0.05) reduced muscle strength endurance by 28%. Therefore, it is recommended that heavy static stretching exercises of a muscle group be avoided prior to any performances requiring maximal muscle strength endurance.

    PMID: 15903372 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    Effect of static stretching of the biceps brachii on torque, electromyography, and mechanomyography during concentric isokinetic muscle actions.

    * Evetovich TK,
    * Nauman NJ,
    * Conley DS,
    * Todd JB.

    Human Performance Laboratory, Wayne State College, Wayne, NE 68787, USA. taeveto1@wsc.edu

    The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of an acute static stretching bout of the biceps brachii on torque, electromyography (EMG), and mechanomyography (MMG) during concentric isokinetic muscle actions. Eighteen (men, n = 10; women, n = 8) adult subjects (M +/- SD age = 22.7 +/- 2.8 years; weight = 78.0 +/- 17.0 kg; height = 177.9 +/- 11.0 cm) performed maximal isokinetic (30 and 270 degrees.s(-1)) forearm flexion strength testing on 2 occasions while EMG and MMG were recorded. Subjects were randomly assigned to stretching (STR) or nonstretching (NSTR) protocols before strength testing. Two-way ANOVAs with repeated measures revealed significantly (p < or = 0.05) greater torque for NSTR (M +/- SEM = 36.9 +/- 3.3 N.m) vs. STR (35.2 +/- 3.3 N.m), significantly greater MMG amplitude for STR vs. NSTR for 30 degrees.s(-1) (STR = 93.5 +/- 14.4 mV; NSTR = 63.1 +/- 10.6 mV) and 270 degrees.s(-1) (STR = 207.6 +/- 35.6 mV; NSTR = 136.4 +/- 31.7 mV), and no difference in EMG amplitude. These results indicate that a greater ability to produce torque without prior stretching is related to the musculotendinous stiffness of the muscle rather than the number of motor units activated. This suggests that performing activities that reduce muscle stiffness (such as stretching), may be detrimental to performance.

    PMID: 12930173 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]


    Just some interesting stuff. Not weighing in one way or the other on stretching due to an injury or due to muscle/tendon pains, just throwing some information out there.
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    I'll take my risks...If I don't stretch I can't workout...If this is correct it's a catch22 for me, but I don't see it...
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    They are saying extreme stretching not what we're talking about.
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    Going below parallel is difficult if your form sucks. When I started squatting I would wear a sneaker with a heal which sends the body forward. This in many cases leads to the knees going forward in turn making it difficult to break parallel (also hurt my knees). With this style I could barely break 365
    Now I wear wrestling shoes sit back into the squat can easily break parallel and with a belt and knee wraps can do 630 on a bad day.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayhawkk
    They are saying extreme stretching not what we're talking about.
    Thanks for clearing that up for me. I'm at work and I try to stay under the radar and often only skim through stuff and sometimes have to close the browser b4 finished...lol...I'm quite the productive employee!
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    Aren't we all But I know that my stretching which isn't super stretching but just more of warming up has helped me a ton. If i'm 10% weaker but 40% in less pain I can deal haha
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayhawkk
    They are saying extreme stretching not what we're talking about.
    Not exactly. They are saying that static stretching i.e. holding a certain position for x number of seconds can lead to a deterioration in strength. And it does to some extent. For warm-ups before lifting, you should be incorporating dynamic stretching instead such as scorpions, fire hydrants, leg swings, body squats etc... If you are not sure what these are, check out the running parts of westside for skinny bastards, the dynamic warmup section. They have most of the drills in there.
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    I can't perform dynamic actions with out first stretching out via static movements. I would be in great paing if I tried it this method...I guess it's a little different though when you have an injury, especially in the lower back!
  

  
 

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