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  1. #1
    Registered Manlet houtexans23's Avatar
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    Lightbulb front squats vs. back squats.

    generally i've always done back squats, but as of lately i've switched to front squats after hearing elliott hulse preach about them being better for athletes. i've found to like them more than back squats but i do want to hear others' perspectives on the subject.

    are front squats better than back squats, and if so, why?
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  2. #2
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    Do them both.

    I like fronts better too.
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  3. #3
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  4. #4
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    I agree with Hulse but I do both.

    I find front squats very humbling.
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    Registered User k9pit's Avatar
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    I do both, but I find front squats to be a more comfortable motion.

    I back squat high bar not low bar so the feel is pretty similar to front squats albeit with more glute/ham involvement.

    I like to combine Front Squats with RDLs and Back Squats with Hack Squats as leg day lead off movements.

    Somedays I'll do both in the same session but in that case I'll go heavy on one and rep out the other with a lighter weight.
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  6. #6
    Registered Manlet houtexans23's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by k9pit View Post
    I do both, but I find front squats more comfortable.

    I back squat high bar not low bar so the feel is pretty similar to front squats albeit with more glute/ham involvement.

    I like to combine Front Squats with RDLs and Back Squats with Hack Squats as leg day lead off movements.

    Somedays I'll do both in the same session but in that case I'll go heavy on one and rep out the other with a lighter weight.
    so you recommend both? should i alternate them weekly or what? i feel like doing both in the same workout would be exhausting.. generally with legs i primarily train for strength because of soccer, but i guess i could do higher reps with one and lower reps with the other.
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  7. #7
    Registered User matjusm's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by houtexans23 View Post
    so you recommend both? should i alternate them weekly or what? i feel like doing both in the same workout would be exhausting.. generally with legs i primarily train for strength because of soccer, but i guess i could do higher reps with one and lower reps with the other.
    You can have more than one squat session a week so alternate the squat versions then. I personally front squat 2x and back squat 2x a week.

    With front squats though keep the reps low, no more than 5-6 as your back will fatigue before your legs do so when the weight gets heavier, you´ll just be doing some ugly rounded back front squats.
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  8. #8
    Registered Manlet houtexans23's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by matjusm View Post
    You can have more than one squat session a week so alternate the squat versions then. I personally front squat 2x and back squat 2x a week.

    With front squats though keep the reps low, no more than 5-6 as your back will fatigue before your legs do so when the weight gets heavier, you´ll just be doing some ugly rounded back front squats.
    i do legs twice per week, so on the first day i will do a workout based around front squat and the second one will use the back squat. thanks for the help! repped.
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    one problem with back squats is that they have a tendency to put too much strain on your lower back, especially when done incorrectly.
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  10. #10
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    Originally Posted by houtexans23 View Post
    generally i've always done back squats, but as of lately i've switched to front squats after hearing elliott hulse preach about them being better for athletes. i've found to like them more than back squats but i do want to hear others' perspectives on the subject.

    are front squats better than back squats, and if so, why?
    Front squats are much more quad dominant, they are great for someone who wants to improve his quads for whatever reason. It also mimics an important part of most of the Olympic lifts, which makes it essential for Olympic weightlifters. Back squats recruits your quads, hamstring, glutes and lower back to a much higher degree compared to high bar squats, which allows you to lift more weight and work on your over-all lower body strength.

    Non of them is better than the others, It all comes down to your goal(s)
    Last edited by DivaJana; 04-24-2013 at 02:25 PM.
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  11. #11
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    Both are good exercises. Do them both and reap the best from both worlds.
    Also be ready to adapt to having your quads being blasted and core as well for trying to stay more upright rather than the back squat.
    I'm also pretty sure it is easier to hit a deeper depth than back squat.
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    Lately I have preferred front squats, but I still do both.

    Quick question on front squats though, every now and then I feel like I am getting pulled forward, but the bar doesn't slide or anything, so is this ok? (My upper back is always a bit sore afterwards as well)
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  13. #13
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    Originally Posted by Krieg13 View Post
    Lately I have preferred front squats, but I still do both.

    Quick question on front squats though, every now and then I feel like I am getting pulled forward, but the bar doesn't slide or anything, so is this ok? (My upper back is always a bit sore afterwards as well)
    Are you keeping the weight on the outer end of you heels?
    You core is probably fatiguing so your back starts to go forward instead of upright shifting
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  14. #14
    Registered Manlet houtexans23's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Singularity7 View Post
    Both are good exercises. Do them both and reap the best from both worlds.
    Also be ready to adapt to having your quads being blasted and core as well for trying to stay more upright rather than the back squat.
    I'm also pretty sure it is easier to hit a deeper depth than back squat.
    i've noticed that. The day after doing front squats for the first time, I was incredibly sore in my abs, but my lower back felt fine, which is part of the reason why i switched from back squats in the first place.
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    Front squats are awesome. Helped me out tremendously with sprints and shot put.
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    Originally Posted by Krieg13 View Post
    Lately I have preferred front squats, but I still do both.

    Quick question on front squats though, every now and then I feel like I am getting pulled forward, but the bar doesn't slide or anything, so is this ok? (My upper back is always a bit sore afterwards as well)
    Depends kinda....do you start pushing off with the balls of your feet when this happens.........?

    One thing to keep in mind is to focus on keeping the bar/elbows "up" and the bar in line with the middle of your feet as you drive up.

    My upper back is pretty strong but upper back fatigue is real once you start going heavy. I usually do sets of 5-6, but I find that heavy sets of 3 help a lot of well for strengthening all muscles in the movement (followed by lower weight sets of 6-8 to get reps in/develop quads).
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    Originally Posted by houtexans23 View Post
    are front squats better than back squats, and if so, why?
    They are both excellent movements and everyone should do them if they want to have big, strong legs. It has been said before, but I'll say again - do both. Neither is better than the other.
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    Originally Posted by houtexans23 View Post
    generally i've always done back squats, but as of lately i've switched to front squats after hearing elliott hulse preach about them being better for athletes. i've found to like them more than back squats but i do want to hear others' perspectives on the subject.

    are front squats better than back squats, and if so, why?
    Some coaches prefer front squats in certain athletes because of sport specific positioning, shorter learning curve, and less risk of injury. It doesn't mean they are better for everyone.
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  19. #19
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    Do both. I do front Squats once a week and back twice. Front Squats are easier to perform correctly I find. The weight you push on front squats depends a lot on upperbody strength though.
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  20. #20
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    High bar back squats. All your power comes from your glutes in athletics. Strengthen your glutes and everything else will follow.
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  21. #21
    Registered User Halfway's Avatar
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    Fronts are a deload for me, the weights are much lighter than back squats and you can't do high reps so I focus on technique work. It also gives the PC a bit of a break and lets me go ATG with a flat back which I cant on back squats. My knees like them, as do my torn hip labrum and piriformis

    better? Absolutely not. Get your close-ish stance, high-ish bar squat up as much as possible and that will build a lot more leg size + strength.

    when back squats go up, fronts should go up assuming you have good technique
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  22. #22
    Mod Squad VoxExMachina's Avatar
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    They are different exercises, which hit the muscles differently. Might as well compare barbell rows with pulldowns.

    Whether you do one, the other, or both depends on your goals. It also depends on what other exercises you are doing.
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    Registered User taher123's Avatar
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    I like em both..even out my legs muscles
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  24. #24
    Registered User miamibodybuilder's Avatar
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    i've actually done the same thing the past few months. i always focused more on back squats and only did front squats every once in a while. but because of knee and back pains i made the switch to front squats to see if they pain would go away and it truly has. so now i make front squats my main squat exercise on leg day and i do back squats every other week, and usually on the smith machine. so yeah man, do them both but i like front squats more.
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  25. #25
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    back> front
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    Objective optimist Xuaxace's Avatar
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    back squat is a very loose term, and can be done in very different ways, from a wide stance low bar to a narrow high bar.

    I have done front squats in the past, but I have come to the realisation that if you are flexible you should be able to perform the high bar back squat in a very very similar fashion to the front squat (torso angle), without the awkwardness of having the bar in front. Since then I have definitely been able to target my quads a lot better.
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  27. #27
    Registered User GeneralSerpant's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Engineer_Guy View Post
    Some coaches prefer front squats in certain athletes because of sport specific positioning, shorter learning curve, and less risk of injury. It doesn't mean they are better for everyone.
    I was thinking that it mainly has to do with the glutes not getting involved, but that also entails a shorter learning curve. The extra weight with back squats means that you have to learn the form better.

    Originally Posted by VoxExMachina View Post
    They are different exercises, which hit the muscles differently. Might as well compare barbell rows with pulldowns.

    Whether you do one, the other, or both depends on your goals. It also depends on what other exercises you are doing.
    I'd say it's more like Decline Bench Press and Incline Bench Press. Maybe dips and Incline Bench Press.
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  28. #28
    Registered User Zalc2's Avatar
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    I make front squats after deadlifts and after back squats .
    natural bodybuilding for da winners ;)
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  29. #29
    Registered User Jfern689's Avatar
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    I have a Front Squat Day and a Back Squat Day
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    Do both, like everybody says.
    Harder better faster stronger

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