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  1. #1
    Worldwide Brah atlrus's Avatar
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    Are squats & deadlifts really good for bodybuilding?

    I was reading about the old school Bulgarian weightlifters and it struck me as odd that even though their main (maybe even only) exercises were squats and deadlifts - their backs and legs weren't really that big. Yes, they were strong as bulls, but as far as building bigger muscle - not much.
    And from all the training videos I've seen of the big names in BB, yes, they would do a couple of sets of squads, but would really hit their legs hard on the machines. Some of them don't even do deadlifts that often/at all, as far as the vids I've seen.

    inb4 - a lot of BB with big legs do squads but they also do a lot of other leg exercises.

    So are the squads and deadlifts really good for building muscle? Here are photos of people doing mainly squads and deadlifts for years:







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    Umm, those people are Olympic weightlifters, their training programs are completely different from someone focused on BB.

    Apples and oranges bro
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    So are the squads and deadlifts really good for building muscle? Here are photos of people doing mainly squads and deadlifts for years:
    Actually they mainly did cleans, jerk, and snatches with squats for assistance and very little deadlifting.

    Here are two more guys who did a lot of squats and deadlifts:

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    Worldwide Brah atlrus's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Engineer_Guy View Post
    Actually they mainly did cleans, jerk, and snatches with squats for assistance and very little deadlifting.

    Here are two more guys who did a lot of squats and deadlifts:

    No doubt, but the point is that they didn't do only squats and deadlifts, correct?

    And the Bulgarian weightlifters did mainly squads and deadligts, besides practicing the weightlifting moves. Just look at this mofo squatting and look at the size of his legs.

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    Don't listen to the trolls above me OP. Squats and deadlifts are completely worthless.

    Complete waste of time. Fact.
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    No doubt, but the point is that they didn't do only squats and deadlifts, correct?

    And the Bulgarian weightlifters did mainly squads and deadligts, besides practicing the weightlifting moves. Just look at this mofo squatting and look at the size of his legs.

    [video=youtube;i1PpX1IOcIs]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1PpX1IOcIs[video]
    I don't anyone is advocating that you only squat and DL...

    Weight lifters squat a lot. They do not deadlift a lot.
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    Originally Posted by Engineer_Guy View Post
    I don't anyone is advocating that you only squat and DL...
    True, but if, for example, I do only preacher curls for 10 years I'd get a huge biceps, while as the weightlifters above show - squatting would not have the same effect.

    So wouldn't it be better to forgo squats and spend the time doing leg presses instead, if the goal is size not strength?
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    True, but if, for example, I do only preacher curls for 10 years I'd get a huge biceps, while as the weightlifters above show - squatting would not have the same effect.
    If you are progressing in squats, then you will get massive legs. How hard is this to understand!?
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  10. #10
    Johnny Rotten ThickAsABrick's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    True, but if, for example, I do only preacher curls for 10 years I'd get a huge biceps, while as the weightlifters above show - squatting would not have the same effect.
    Greetings, compadre.

    I feel that the above example is a bit too broad. Some people may get good gains from one exercise, while some may not. This alone is not proof or rationale for only performing that one exercise.

    It's probably a good idea to include squats and some form of deadlift.

    Have a great week!
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    True, but if, for example, I do only preacher curls for 10 years I'd get a huge biceps, while as the weightlifters above show - squatting would not have the same effect.
    You're saying those weight lifters don't have big legs?
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    Originally Posted by Engineer_Guy View Post
    You're saying those weight lifters don't have big legs?
    Exactly. It's just their costumes that make them look dorky.
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    True, but if, for example, I do only preacher curls for 10 years I'd get a huge biceps, while as the weightlifters above show - squatting would not have the same effect.
    their Olympic weightlifters, they train for power and strength, so really low reps, yer man in the video was doing 2 reps but he was lifting them really quickly, olympic weightlifters lift huge weights in a very short amount of time, using fast twitch fibres, so they probably wont get huge, but they will be super strong

    deadlifts and squats are great because they hit multiple parts of your body, the thing is getting your rep range straight for growth.
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    Worldwide Brah atlrus's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Engineer_Guy View Post
    You're saying those weight lifters don't have big legs?
    Look at the video I posted - does he have big legs? Not compared to an accountant, of course, but lets say to a pro body builder.

    If you are progressing in squats, then you will get massive legs. How hard is this to understand!?
    Again, look at the video, note the weight the guy is squatting and look at the size of his legs. Your statement is simply not true.
    Last edited by atlrus; 03-29-2012 at 10:56 AM.
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    Look at the video I posted - does he have big legs? Not compared to an accountant, of course, but lets say to a pro body builder.
    1. Weight lifters are in weight classes so they aren't always trying to pack on mass.
    2. Those images and video are examples you chose. There are certainly weight lifters with impressive physiques and legs.


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    Worldwide Brah atlrus's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ThickAsABrick View Post
    This alone is not proof or rationale for only performing that one exercise.
    Actually my point was exactly opposite, i.e. avoiding that one exercise, if muscle gain is the primary goal.
    Weightlifters are the only athletes that train legs with squats only, so I think it's the best example of the effectiveness of squats in the long term, i.e. the best way to show what squats alone could do for your legs.
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    Weightlifters are the only athletes that train legs with squats only
    Squats, cleans, snatches, pulls (RDL, clean/snatch pull, high pulls, etc)...
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    nice bull****.of course squats and deads build big back and legs.but only lifters are strength athletes
    heavy weight low sets
    VOLUME is so important as intensity to build muscle.also they dont train to add mass because more mass=heavier lifter=weaker lifter.if u weight 100 kg and squat the same as me but i weight 60kg whos stronger?
    strong logic involved
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    Yes, squats and deadlifts will help you add overall muscle mass. IME, they're not the only exercises that should be used, nor even particularly the "best" exercise for any one muscle group. But overall, they are very efficient at helping to pack on mass simply because of the number of muscles involved.

    You cannot draw direct correlations from olympic weightlifters because they train for strength, not hypertrophy, and technique is a big part of their lifts. Typically, they use a lower rep range and lower volume than a bodybuilder would use. While size and strength are related, they don't always go proportionately hand-in-hand.
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    Originally Posted by muscleman353 View Post
    nice bull****.of course squats and deads build big back and legs.but only lifters are strength athletes
    heavy weight low sets
    VOLUME is so important as intensity to build muscle.also they dont train to add mass because more mass=heavier lifter=weaker lifter.if u weight 100 kg and squat the same as me but i weight 60kg whos stronger?
    strong logic involved
    Your logic is extremely flawed, please do not participate. There is a reason why there are "weight groups".
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    Your logic is extremely flawed, please do not participate. There is a reason why there are "weight groups".
    in saying that volume matters?lol
    and what do u mean about weight categories?
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    Originally Posted by muscleman353 View Post
    nice bull****.of course squats and deads build big back and legs.but only lifters are strength athletes
    heavy weight low sets
    VOLUME is so important as intensity to build muscle.also they dont train to add mass because more mass=heavier lifter=weaker lifter.if u weight 100 kg and squat the same as me but i weight 60kg whos stronger?
    strong logic involved
    Well typically the 100kg lifter would lift more than the 60kg lifter hence why there's weight classes in weight lifting and power lifting.

    In that example you'd be equally strong.
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    Originally Posted by VoxExMachina View Post
    Yes, squats and deadlifts will help you add overall muscle mass. IME, they're not the only exercises that should be used, nor even particularly the "best" exercise for any one muscle group. But overall, they are very efficient at helping to pack on mass simply because of the number of muscles involved.

    You cannot draw direct correlations from olympic weightlifters because they train for strength, not hypertrophy, and technique is a big part of their lifts. Typically, they use a lower rep range and lower volume than a bodybuilder would use. While size and strength are related, they don't always go proportionately hand-in-hand.
    I agree with this. But if your goal is to get bigger, why not substitute squats with leg presses? I was watching a video of Coleman doing leg work and while he did a few squats in the low rep range (2-3x800lbs), he really focused on leg presses with high volume (I think he did something like 10x2,000lbs+). Also, a lot of the pros are doing squads on a Smith machine, basically isolating quads.

    Is it possible that squats are just something people do out of habit/influence instead of being the best leg exercise, as many tend to claim?
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    I agree with this. But if your goal is to get bigger, why not substitute squats with leg presses? I was watching a video of Coleman doing leg work and while he did a few squats in the low rep range, he really focused on leg presses with high volume. Also, a lot of the pros are doing squads on a Smith machine, basically isolating quads.

    Is it possible that squats are just something people do out of habit/influence instead of being the best leg exercise, as many tend to claim?
    oh gawd!its because the lower body is naturally stronger than the upper.so with squats yes its true that u may fail the set rep because ur upper body is not ready for it but the lower is.thats why the post -exhaust pre -exhaust them quads.that still doesnt mean anything cause the squats works much more mass than the leg press.theres really no comparison.
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    Honestly, I don't know whether to laugh or weep for humanity due to this thread/the op.


    OP, don't squat or deadlift. It seems like you're looking for justification not to anyways. So don't.
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    I agree with this. But if your goal is to get bigger, why not substitute squats with leg presses? I was watching a video of Coleman doing leg work and while he did a few squats in the low rep range (2-3x800lbs), he really focused on leg presses with high volume (I think he did something like 10x2,000lbs+). Also, a lot of the pros are doing squads on a Smith machine, basically isolating quads.

    Is it possible that squats are just something people do out of habit/influence instead of being the best leg exercise, as many tend to claim?
    Ronnie Coleman is not a great example of how the average lifter should train.
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    Originally Posted by chazzy1864 View Post
    Honestly, I don't know whether to laugh or weep for humanity due to this thread/the op.


    OP, don't squat or deadlift. It seems like you're looking for justification not to anyways. So don't.
    thissss!!!^ op u have to understand that u have to lift heavy **** and make sacrifices to progress just like in every sport.
    this or stay mediocre at best its ur choice.really i cant even ****in think a substitute of the squat for a beginner
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    Originally Posted by chazzy1864 View Post
    Honestly, I don't know whether to laugh or weep for humanity due to this thread/the op.


    OP, don't squat or deadlift. It seems like you're looking for justification not to anyways. So don't.
    LOL, I'm not 15 so I don't do peer pressure. If I don't want to do squats I don't do squats

    I am really trying to understand the reasons behind squatting for mass, since the evidence just doesn't add up.
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    Originally Posted by atlrus View Post
    I am really trying to understand the reasons behind squatting for mass, since the evidence just doesn't add up.
    facepalm.jpg

    You must be trolling...
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