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  1. #1
    Registered User SwagenGTI's Avatar
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    Proper foot position for back squats?

    Alright, so back in high school I maxxed out (only tried once) on my back squats at 315; 5'3" @115 lbs. I feel like back then I was hitting 270 ish pretty easily though I dont think I was going as low as I am now. Anyways, I am 145 now, and I have yet to max out and I have been increasing weight by 5 lbs each week. Today, I went for 270 (3x8) and ended up failing on the last set. I noticed, that I am indeed going lower than I used to but my foot positioning seems very wrong to me.

    Back in high school we were told to squat toes pointing straight (or just slightly out) and about shoulder width apart. Since I started squatting again (January) I have been going with a stance that is more comfortable and allows me to go lower but I was examining it today in the slightly reflective window in front of the squat rack I look awful; my feet are wider than shoulder width, my feet, which naturally are angled outward, might be a bit more angled, and the weight seems to be sitting on the inside of my foot (more noticeable on my right foot). I squat barefoot (socks) and I can feel my foot kind of slipping out every once in a while and when looking at the reflection I was terrified of how it looked like my ankle could give way pretty easily.

    Anyways, obviously, I need to fix this but what is the proper foot positioning? Straight feet? slightly angled feet? Shoulder width? I feel like I cannot go even close to parallel when I stand shoulder width/feet straight without rounding my back too much. Hopefully I can fix this and be able to lift what I used to lift
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  2. #2
    Laughing Man Singularity7's Avatar
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    Try not to have straight feet. Always slightly angled, always and adjust from there accordingly.

    Use a foot positioning that is comfortable for you and of course allows you to execute the lift with good form. Make sure knees track in line with your foot.

    I've adjusted my foot positioning so many times until i found my sweet spot which is just slightly be more narrow than shoulder width apart.

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  3. #3
    Registered User SwagenGTI's Avatar
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    I guess I need to throw a single plate on each side and try various positions. I need to get some shoes as well to help keep my feet from slipping. I have been watching those "you think you can squat" videos and I guess I have been moving up and down and relying on my quads rather than opening my legs and utilizing more of my hips.
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    Registered User EmperorRyker's Avatar
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    The "ideal" position is supposed to be heels shoulder width, toes angled at a 30 degree angle from looking straight forward. But obviously the best position for a certain individual will change based on their flexibility, natural stance etc.
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  5. #5
    Training For Chest Hair rdferguson's Avatar
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    The proper foot position is whatever allows you to squat safely and productively (and, if you're interested in competing in powerlifting, whatever will allow you hit legal depth for your white lights). Some of the best squats I've seen have been with the feet only about hip-width apart, but lots of great lifters use a shoulder-width stance or even wider. My stance is normally just outside of shoulder-width. I've gone through different phases as far as foot angle goes. At first I was taught to squat with my feet parallel, then I relearned squats with my feet turned out slightly, then I relearned them again with my toes pointed out about 45 degrees, then I brought them back in to about 30 degrees, and now I'm squatting with my feet just about parallel again.
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  6. #6
    Registered User SwagenGTI's Avatar
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    hmmm, so I guess my feet position might not even be my problem then. the weight seems to get transfered to the medial/inner parts of my feet rather than the lateral parts so I need to try spreading my knees rather than trying to go straight down. I also need to focus on lifting my butt first.
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  7. #7
    Registered User devilsrule61287's Avatar
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    I have the same issue with the weight feeling like its pushing through the inner sides of my feet. This causes my knees to cave in. Really focus on that "knees out" cue. Imagine spreading the flooor with your feet. That will help resist and fight off the feeling of the weight on the inner foot and will stop your knees from caving as a result.
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