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Form Critique
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GeorgeP1
Level

Join date: Feb 2012
Location: England
Posts: 28

Can anyone please critique my form

Squat 127.5kg


Overhead Press 55kg


Barbell Row 87.5kg


Deadlift 130kg


Height 6ft and weight is 85-90kg depending on time of day

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Kooopa
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Join date: Jul 2012
Location:
Posts: 68

squat:
- bigger chest
- don't let yourself drop that hard, go down very controlled and then push out of the whole, don't do that bouncy shit

ohp:
- elbows need to be more out in front, otherwise your lever goes to crap
-> spread your lats forward, creating kind of a "shelf" for the bar
- push yourself through as soon as the bar is over your head, looks like you're wating a little too long

didn't watch rows

deadlift:
- your back must be in extension, if you lift like that you'll hurt yourself in the long run. as the weight gets heavier if you don't fix your form it will go to shit
- you pull the slack out of the bar first before which you get really tight, then you go up. if you're gonna reset on a heavy single you should get all the way up first

hope that helps

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GeorgeP1
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Join date: Feb 2012
Location: England
Posts: 28

Thanks mate,

Squat: I wasn't aware I was bouncing and what do you mean by bigger chest, my shoulder blades are pulled back as far as they can go?

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Mathew Bertrand
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Join date: Feb 2005
Location:
Posts: 630

what he means by bigger chest is you need to stay more upright.

Nice lifts man, I'm going to give my feedback one by one.

First of all, very nice squat 280 is no joke, it took me a long time to get there. 315 is right around the corner, but screw that, 365 isn't far either, focus on 365.

WHAT I LIKE ABOUT YOUR SQUAT:
your shoulder blades are tigher together, your descent is smooth and controlled and you get a great stretch reflex coming out of the hole, ie you bounce very well and controlled. your stance is shoulder width, and your depth is perfect. Your knees go out over your toes which I like, keeps you upright, and takes advantage of your quads through stretch reflex, as well as below parallel the quads are the most engaged and the limiting factor of your squat. you also keep your back flat, and your pelvis doens't round as you go past parallel, telling me you have good posture, and likely no pelvis tilt, or you could just have loose hamstrings, I also like what you're doing with your head when you drive it back into the bar... either way, very nice squat, I wanted to let you know what you're doing well so that you stay on track and keep doing it.

WHAT YOU CAN IMPROVE ON:
your walkout is very loose and shaky - get tight as hell, and limit it to 3 steps, the faster you set up the more you'll squat.
Low bar - I don't like it, and that's the reason for the bigger chest comment, low bar makes you lean forward more. This doesn't mean you have to go highbar on top of your traps, but go somewhere in the middle, on top of the shoulders, but below the traps.
grip - go thumbless, it will save your shoulders and arms, improves your flexibility.

TIPS
weightlifting shoes - if you can, ask for them for xmas, check out ebay or roguefitness. Addidas and Nike are the best. These will improve your squat instantly, they make it much easier to get depth and keep position, and put much more emphasis on the quads. They'll last a lifetime, just make sure you get a 3/4 inch heel.

front squats - back squat once a week, and front squat once a week, bring up this lift to 75-80% of your back squat, and your form will greatly improve as well as you'll have the quads to squat big.

Overall nice squat, excellent execution, you've got big things in your future.

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Mathew Bertrand
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OHP - Kooopa summed it up very well

Bentover row - I would highly recommend that you don't max out on this exercise, do sets of 6-10, and touch and focus on bringing your shoulder blades together.

I honestly only use 135 when I do them, and I generally just do machine rows and cable rows.

Deadlift:

What I like : I like your starting position, your scapulae is in line with the bar, so you arne't wasting any energy.

What you can improve on: you just need to lighten up, and learn how to keep your back static so that it doesn't round. Besides just plain old getting tight as shit, try some deadlifts to the knees with 80% for triples. These teach you how to drive with your legs, and how to keep proper torso position.

That's about it, big time respect for opening yourself up to criticism the way you have, that takes balls man, and I respect anyone who wants to get better.

Hope my advice helps.

Feel free to ask any questions.

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Kooopa
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Join date: Jul 2012
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Larry10 wrote:
Low bar - I don't like it, and that's the reason for the bigger chest comment, low bar makes you lean forward more. This doesn't mean you have to go highbar on top of your traps, but go somewhere in the middle, on top of the shoulders, but below the traps.
grip - go thumbless, it will save your shoulders and arms, improves your flexibility.


low bar squatting isn't bad it's just a little more posterior chain involving. i wouldn't advise anyone to not squat low bar as it usually enables the greatest muscle recruitment which enables you to use more weight which then in turn allows for greater strengthening potential.
either way, you should experiment in the beginning with squat styles as well as how far you put your feet apart. find the way that is most comfortable to you and go with it. it may change after time as it did with me (in the past high, now low).

strongly agree on the grip though, squats are the only lift where i would go thumbless.

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Mathew Bertrand
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Join date: Feb 2005
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Kooopa wrote:
Larry10 wrote:
Low bar - I don't like it, and that's the reason for the bigger chest comment, low bar makes you lean forward more. This doesn't mean you have to go highbar on top of your traps, but go somewhere in the middle, on top of the shoulders, but below the traps.
grip - go thumbless, it will save your shoulders and arms, improves your flexibility.


low bar squatting isn't bad it's just a little more posterior chain involving. i wouldn't advise anyone to not squat low bar as it usually enables the greatest muscle recruitment which enables you to use more weight which then in turn allows for greater strengthening potential.
either way, you should experiment in the beginning with squat styles as well as how far you put your feet apart. find the way that is most comfortable to you and go with it. it may change after time as it did with me (in the past high, now low).

strongly agree on the grip though, squats are the only lift where i would go thumbless.


I appreciate the feedback, and I'm just finishing an article that actually deals with this, so I won't get into it too heavily, but my personal belief is to take more advantage of the quads as my research indicates that it's actually the quads that are the limiting factor in the raw squat.

That being said, I'm currently reading Starting Strength, and he makes a very good argument.

In the end it's up to the lifter.

Hope all is well

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cparker
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Join date: Nov 2008
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Posts: 214

Idk if its been touched on already, but on the squat:

Fix your walkout, youre feet are all over the place getting to your stance

Get yours elbows under the bar more, they were cocked back. This can cause you to have an excessive forward lean.

Tighten up your core and slow your descent into the hole, think about keeping a tight "coil" that springs you out of the bottom.

And on the deadlift:

You start with the bar very close to your shins, not always a bad thing but can put unneeded stress on the back.

Try keeping your shoulders above the hips, pull the slack out and sit back on your heels, leading with the chest.

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Field
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Join date: Oct 2011
Location: Washington, USA
Posts: 529

That barbell row was pretty appalling,
thats all i have to say.

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cparker
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Join date: Nov 2008
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Field wrote:
That barbell row was pretty appalling,
thats all i have to say.



hey good critique

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Mathew Bertrand
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Join date: Feb 2005
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Posts: 630

cparker wrote:
Field wrote:
That barbell row was pretty appalling,
thats all i have to say.



hey good critique


lmao.... also a good critique

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Kooopa
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Join date: Jul 2012
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Posts: 68

Larry10 wrote:
I appreciate the feedback, and I'm just finishing an article that actually deals with this, so I won't get into it too heavily, but my personal belief is to take more advantage of the quads as my research indicates that it's actually the quads that are the limiting factor in the raw squat.

That being said, I'm currently reading Starting Strength, and he makes a very good argument.

In the end it's up to the lifter.

Hope all is well


i think rip makes the same argument regarding that the quads limit the lift. that's the reason why he advises to squat low as it brings in more muscles because of the more foward leaning torso position. with high bar squats you emphasize the quads more, so shouldn't you squat low bar because of the argument you presented?

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GeorgeP1
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Join date: Feb 2012
Location: England
Posts: 28

Larry10 : Squat; thanks for the advice I will try and incorporate front squats as maybe a warm up for my back squats, good idea? I've had a few people comment now saying I need to be more upright so I guess it's something I need to improve upon.
Barbell row; Normally I just do 5x5 of rows but the aim of that particular session was to see how far we could go on each lift either before we fail or form breaks down.
Deadlift; I had a ex-powerlfiter friend say my hips are too high and thinks most of my issues are due to that, but do you know any particular exercises that could help me get tighter?

Cparker: should the walk out just be 1/8 squat, right foot back, left foot back then squat? And good heads up about the elbows I hadn't thought about that before. With the speed of descent I found when I went slower I ended up stopping slightly at the bottom finding it impossible to get up again.

With the deadlift I'm conscious of trying to get the bar over the middle of the foot but will bear it in mind about getting too close to the shin.

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Mathew Bertrand
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Join date: Feb 2005
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Posts: 630

Kooopa wrote:
Larry10 wrote:
I appreciate the feedback, and I'm just finishing an article that actually deals with this, so I won't get into it too heavily, but my personal belief is to take more advantage of the quads as my research indicates that it's actually the quads that are the limiting factor in the raw squat.

That being said, I'm currently reading Starting Strength, and he makes a very good argument.

In the end it's up to the lifter.

Hope all is well


i think rip makes the same argument regarding that the quads limit the lift. that's the reason why he advises to squat low as it brings in more muscles because of the more foward leaning torso position. with high bar squats you emphasize the quads more, so shouldn't you squat low bar because of the argument you presented?


With a higher bar squat you epmphasize the quads more, but they're also in a much more advantageous position to contract when your knees are more forward.

My concern with low bar, or at least what would happen to me when I was using it, was that I wouldn't have the quads to get out of the hole, my butt would shoot back to compensate, but my hamstrings are just not in a good position to be able to do much, and I'd wind up face planting. I used to constantly blame my upper back.

That's just me though.

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Mathew Bertrand
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GeorgeP1 wrote:
Larry10 : Squat; thanks for the advice I will try and incorporate front squats as maybe a warm up for my back squats, good idea? I've had a few people comment now saying I need to be more upright so I guess it's something I need to improve upon.
Barbell row; Normally I just do 5x5 of rows but the aim of that particular session was to see how far we could go on each lift either before we fail or form breaks down.
Deadlift; I had a ex-powerlfiter friend say my hips are too high and thinks most of my issues are due to that, but do you know any particular exercises that could help me get tighter?

Cparker: should the walk out just be 1/8 squat, right foot back, left foot back then squat? And good heads up about the elbows I hadn't thought about that before. With the speed of descent I found when I went slower I ended up stopping slightly at the bottom finding it impossible to get up again.

With the deadlift I'm conscious of trying to get the bar over the middle of the foot but will bear it in mind about getting too close to the shin.


Front squats as a warm up is a wonderful idea.

and yes, work on being more upright, try squatting like this:



watch this squt over and over, memorize it, pretend it's you. watch how far his knees go forward, as they have to due to his long legs. He's one of the best squatters in the world.

Personally, I would never max out my barbell row, they're a high injury risk, lots of people tear a bicep on heavy rows. I think you have some time before that's a reality, but I wouldn't push it either, I think 5x5 is perfect.

For your deadlift, I watched it again, and I agree your hips could be lower, but not by much, hopefully this video helps to explain how to position your deadlifts.





I'd watch this too, just for good measure, I really love how Mr Rippetoe explains the deadlift.



Hopefully this helps you out man, feel free to fire off any questions or ask for more clarification.

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tattoo'd'popeye
Level 2

Join date: Sep 2006
Location: Missouri, USA
Posts: 586

Larry thanks for posting this, this guy explained more about fundamental deadlifts in 10 minutes than anyone else I have come across. These should get pinned to permanent thread to read for all new guys!

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Mathew Bertrand
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Join date: Feb 2005
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Mark does an amazing job explaining the deadlift, best I've come across so far.

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Kooopa
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Join date: Jul 2012
Location:
Posts: 68

Larry10 wrote:
Kooopa wrote:
Larry10 wrote:
I appreciate the feedback, and I'm just finishing an article that actually deals with this, so I won't get into it too heavily, but my personal belief is to take more advantage of the quads as my research indicates that it's actually the quads that are the limiting factor in the raw squat.

That being said, I'm currently reading Starting Strength, and he makes a very good argument.

In the end it's up to the lifter.

Hope all is well


i think rip makes the same argument regarding that the quads limit the lift. that's the reason why he advises to squat low as it brings in more muscles because of the more foward leaning torso position. with high bar squats you emphasize the quads more, so shouldn't you squat low bar because of the argument you presented?


With a higher bar squat you epmphasize the quads more, but they're also in a much more advantageous position to contract when your knees are more forward.

My concern with low bar, or at least what would happen to me when I was using it, was that I wouldn't have the quads to get out of the hole, my butt would shoot back to compensate, but my hamstrings are just not in a good position to be able to do much, and I'd wind up face planting. I used to constantly blame my upper back.

That's just me though.


i wouldn't call high bar squatting a more advantageous position for the quads per se, they are just (usually, there are some people squatting better high than low bar but i'm referring to the norm) more limiting because you have the hamstrings at a more disadvantageous position.

either way, i guess it comes down to preference so i don't think discussing further from this point on will be of much use.

rip's explaining shit pretty well in any case! those videos & perhaps his book (although dreadfully detailed) could also be of use to the OP

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GeorgeP1
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Join date: Feb 2012
Location: England
Posts: 28



I've taken everyone's advice and here is what resulted, thanks guys!

Still must be room for improvement?



Similarly with my deadlift.

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