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    So, after reading from many sites and a few books I have realized that only a few consider a half squat a squat? Is that right? When I squat full my knees crack like mad and kinda ache for a day or two. Only to squat again to ache again. This achy knee thing starting yrs ago, unrelated to lifting. All my brothers (3) have bad knees, my dad too as well as all his brothers (my 4 uncles). Maybe funky knee genes? Anyway, question is, is it still worth doing? As in, will my legs and rear still benefit?

    Regardless, I totally love it, lifting weights has become a love for me now.

  • #2
    Squatting to depth is good for your knees. Half squats are terrible for them. Keep squatting correctly past parallel and I bet the aches will go away.
    The Champagne of Beards

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    • #3
      What do you consider a half squat? Some people think that it's not a squat unless you go ass-to-grass (which is ridiculous). I think squatting to parallel is perfectly effective.

      You shouldn't do an exercise that causes you actual pain. I know some taller lifters who have stopped squatting all together because their build just makes it so difficult for them. Squatting is not mandatory, and if you're not built to squat without pain, don't squat.
      My nutrition/fitness/critical thinking blog:

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      • #4
        I am going parallel. Mr Rippetoe said (in a video on you tube teaching about the squat) unless I remember wrong, that past the knees is useless and not considered a squat? I'm getting up in the 100's and it's too much. Before that my knees felt better than before I started lifting.

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        • #5
          Rich said it as well, squatting past parallel.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by umm7 View Post
            I am going parallel. Mr Rippetoe said (in a video on you tube teaching about the squat) unless I remember wrong, that past the knees is useless and not considered a squat? I'm getting up in the 100's and it's too much. Before that my knees felt better than before I started lifting.
            Are you warming up properly? You should always do at least 3, maybe 4 or 5 warm-up sets with less weight before you hit your workout weight. This helps your whole body (knees especially) transition into the heavier weights.

            For instance, today I squated 3x3 at 225 lbs, so my warmup sets were 2x5x45 (bar), 1x5x95, 1x3x135, 1x2x185 before I finally got into my workout.

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            • #7
              Yes, first I do a set with an empty bar, then two more sets with some added weight each time. I also jump rope first before doing anything, and stretch.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by umm7 View Post
                Yes, first I do a set with an empty bar, then two more sets with some added weight each time. I also jump rope first before doing anything, and stretch.
                Take a form check video and post it in the Coach's forum on the Starting Strength website.
                The Champagne of Beards

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                • #9
                  You may just have bad knees from -- like you said -- years of having bad knees. But squatting will surely help you with that over time. I would follow RichMahogany's advice and take a video to have others critique your form, though. I've never heard of bad form hurting knees (usually neck or back), but it can't help.

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                  • #10
                    I won't post pics/videos. I will however ask my dad when I see him (long time lifter). Although he won't squat with weights (stopped yrs back because of his knees) he does body squats. My back and neck feel great, and I'm not on my toes. I'm pretty certain my form is good. (video watched myself)

                    I just wanna tighten my tush. I hope not going below parallel will not hinder that.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by umm7 View Post
                      I won't post pics/videos. I will however ask my dad when I see him (long time lifter). Although he won't squat with weights (stopped yrs back because of his knees) he does body squats. My back and neck feel great, and I'm not on my toes. I'm pretty certain my form is good. (video watched myself)

                      I just wanna tighten my tush. I hope not going below parallel will not hinder that.
                      You've got things backwards. Not going below parallel will put undue stress on your knees. It's going deep (1-2" below parallel) that protects and strengthens them. If you're high-bar squatting, that also requires a little more shear force on the knees, which is one of the reasons Rippetoe coaches the low-bar squat.

                      I'm sure your dad is a great guy, but he's probably not the best one to ask for squat form advice, from the sound of things.

                      Just cut your head out when you take the video, and post it anonymously.
                      The Champagne of Beards

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by jakejoh10 View Post
                        What do you consider a half squat? Some people think that it's not a squat unless you go ass-to-grass (which is ridiculous). I think squatting to parallel is perfectly effective.

                        You shouldn't do an exercise that causes you actual pain. I know some taller lifters who have stopped squatting all together because their build just makes it so difficult for them. Squatting is not mandatory, and if you're not built to squat without pain, don't squat.
                        This.

                        And some people also do very good on shallow quarter squats, that can be effective for building quadriceps without the Donald Duck ass, and without stressing knees and lower back too much...
                        "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

                        - Schopenhauer

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                        • #13
                          My dad is a pretty good :-) maybe right, I may need a different person to ask. Do you say that because of his knees?

                          Would you think starting over again (just the bar) and squatting below the knees then adding 5lbs ever workout would fix my knee cracking achy feeling?

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                          • #14
                            Oh, and I'n doing low bar, not high bar.

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                            • #15
                              Sorry for the typos, smart phones are not always all that smart. Plus fat thumbs :-)

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