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View Full Version : Sticking point for Squat and DL



ZenMonkey
05-23-2008, 07:10 PM
Sticking Points:

Squat: At the bottom of the hole. I squat at shoulder stance and belt squat 315. I usually go a few inches below parallel in CTs. I think I will be upgrading to an OLY shoe to accommodate my style and flexability. I seem to get some momentum out of the hole but when I hit parallel I lose it all and sink back down.


Deadlift: Off of the ground. I hit 405 a few times both sumo and conv but just can't keep it consistent.


..side note... I will have a deload week in 3-4 weeksin which I will be on vacation but will do some active recovery such as hiking, climbing, and i'm gonna bring some kettlebells! nothing like doing some swings in the crisp mountain air.

MNRob
05-23-2008, 08:09 PM
I was starting to stick as well with squats, start up out of the hole and get real shakey. I widened my stance just a bit and got a little more ham and glute activation, pointed my toes out just a tad more too. Couple this with squatting barefoot (in socks) and it helped me a lot. I also started doing some "light" front squats after my squat sets as well to hit the quads just bit more in the squatting motion. Seems to have worked, my squats have gone up nicely.

Do you DL on leg day or on back day?

ZenMonkey
05-23-2008, 09:30 PM
I have a separate day for both. Changing stance is not something I want to do. I need the stance I am in now for rugby and OLY lifting purposes. My split:

Snatch Work
ME Squat
SLDL
Dips
Calf Raises

ME DL/ RE DL/ DE DL (3 week cycle)
DE Squat
OH Press
Pullups
Decline Situps

CNJ Work
Front Squats
Incline DB press
BO Row

All reps are low.... 5x5 at most usually
I also throw in some plyo work at the end of each day... not too much though. I also do HIIT or some type of circuit training 1-3x a week. I am bulking as well. (also any links would be appericiated as well for info)

thewicked
05-23-2008, 09:37 PM
I was starting to stick as well with squats, start up out of the hole and get real shakey. I widened my stance just a bit and got a little more ham and glute activation, pointed my toes out just a tad more too. Couple this with squatting barefoot (in socks) and it helped me a lot. I also started doing some "light" front squats after my squat sets as well to hit the quads just bit more in the squatting motion. Seems to have worked, my squats have gone up nicely.

Do you DL on leg day or on back day?

same for me here bro!

ZenMonkey
05-24-2008, 09:25 AM
anyone?

joey54
05-24-2008, 11:17 AM
Maybe, just maybe, you want to get rid of the front squats on your third day and do an exercise which hits the hams(i know, posterior chain) more, ie good mornings, glute ham raises, pull throughs. it seems that is where you are getting stuck at zen, right? for deadlifts zen, do you do them in the rack as well?

ZenMonkey
05-25-2008, 09:08 AM
so you think i am failing due to hamstring strength? i fail in the squat coming up as I hit parallel.


i dont usually do DLs in the rack... why?

txmike1
05-25-2008, 09:17 AM
so you think i am failing due to hamstring strength? i fail in the squat coming up as I hit parallel.


I believe the quads don't activate until 2-3 inches above parallel, so yeah, you're failing due to hamstring strength if you fail AT parallel. I think.

Someone else will chime in if I'm wrong and help us both I hope :idea:

joey54
05-25-2008, 09:19 AM
I think it could be hamstring strength, not 100% sure. could I ask, what are you using weight and rep rise with your stiff leg? I mean I know your hitting your hamstrings/lower back with your deads as well, but maybe they could use more work. HIT might also be affecting your gains. If you are trying to gain muscle mass and then killing yourself with cardio, it could be counterproductive. I know you have to keep in shape for rugby, but maybe light cardio right now, until you get a little closer to your season(which I am not sure when it runs) might help you out. Where do you feel your are failing when you get stuck at parrallel? When you push up, where do you feel you don't have it to make it all the way up? Do you start to lean far forward or anything like that?



As for the deadlifts, just asking for variety sake. I know your are rotating the rep scheme/style each week, but that is a lot of deadlifting off the floor. Plus, with rack deads you can use a little more weight, and vary the height you pull at. Each height is like a different exercise, which can help your overall deads.

Another question, and I apologize for all the questions, is why not follow the traditional west side split? you are using many of the principles already.

ZenMonkey
05-25-2008, 09:50 AM
i think it may be hammies now that everyone has said it and i thought about it.
SLDLs ~120-140kgs for 5x5

with the failing point on squats... I begin to rise from 3-4 inches below parallel... as I approach parallel I do so with a decent amount of speed and when I hit parallel momentum dies and I just sink back down to atg. form remains static.


on the deads i feel really strong except for getting the bar from the ground to a few inches (or right under the knee). when i hit my max i felt really shaky off of the floor but as soon as i get the bar to the knees i feel fine.


the reason for an unconventional split: I need to incorporate OLY stuff and get my squat and DL #s up and this seemed like a decent route. I have made good gains with the split so far.. except for these two plateaus everything has been increasing steadily. I want the benefits from westside and olympic movements.

Bob
05-25-2008, 10:46 AM
Ever try pause squats? Sitting in the hole for 4-5 secs and then exploding up... I read about in a couple of Milos - a real old timer type of squat... I believe there was a mention of guys using upwards of 80% of their max... I've only paused up to about 60% of my max... but it sure has built a great stable base and I can explode better too...

Below parallel box squats would help too..

ZenMonkey
05-25-2008, 10:54 AM
Ever try pause squats? Sitting in the hole for 4-5 secs and then exploding up... I read about in a couple of Milos - a real old timer type of squat... I believe there was a mention of guys using upwards of 80% of their max... I've only paused up to about 60% of my max... but it sure has built a great stable base and I can explode better too...

Below parallel box squats would help too..

thanks for the info.. I will try the pauses. I already do the low box squats though.

joey54
05-25-2008, 12:09 PM
Once you get that stiff leg up, your squat will go up. also, give gm's a try. pausing can help as well, i know others have suggested this in other threads. understand why you are doing the split you are, so as long as it is working keep up with it. i would chill with doing deads off the floor all the time, but if it is working for you, why change it?

Reko
05-25-2008, 12:28 PM
My bet for the deadlifts being tough off the floor would be quad strength.

ZenMonkey
05-25-2008, 12:31 PM
thanks joey... looking forward to tomorrow. gonna bump up the ham training and work on the pausing tomorrow after 1RM attempt.

i agree i should change the DLs up, but rack pulls, pull throughs etc seem like they are strengthening my strengths rather than my weaknesses. Maybe working with smaller plates on the DLing is what I should try... thoughts?

ZenMonkey
05-25-2008, 12:32 PM
My bet for the deadlifts being tough off the floor would be quad strength.

Thanks Reko! I will try to use that.

Reko
05-25-2008, 01:49 PM
[QUOTE=ZenMonkey;1934423

Maybe working with smaller plates on the DLing is what I should try... thoughts?[/QUOTE]

Agreed, that or standing on plates/boxes.

joey54
05-25-2008, 06:56 PM
could try the deads off the floor. another idea, you could sub barbell hacks for one of your quad exercises, ever done these? basically a deadlift holding the bar behind your back.

ZenMonkey
05-25-2008, 07:10 PM
great ideas, thanks guys!

joey54
05-25-2008, 07:11 PM
and i am thinking of another thing again, you said you are getting close to a break. maybe your are pretty much at your max for this particular period of your training and once you get back into it after your time off, you might start gaining again doing exactly what you are doing now. again, just another thought.

ZenMonkey
05-26-2008, 02:35 PM
maybe you a right. will be interesting to see. Today I couldn't get up 295. 295 last week was easy.. twice with a close miss at 315! F. I probably didn't build up to it well enough. Here's what I did:


ME Squat
Warm up hips, torso, shoulders and knees.
BW Squats x5
135x2x5
225x1x5
275x1x2
295x1xfailed
few minutes rest, water, light stretching
295x1xfailed
275x2x1
Low Box Squats
225x2x5

rest
-----
Power Shrugs 3x3-1 working up from 40kgs to a PR of 100kgs that felt like I could move into snatch position. (If I can OH squat it up is not yet likely)
Light Snatch Pulls, receiving with small ROM squatting with 40 kgs 5x3

-----

SLDL
work up
100 kgs 2x3
110kgs 1x3
120kgs 1x3
140kgs 1x1

Dips
85 lbs x 5x4-4

Calf Raises
160-200kgs in the smith
5x5

NITREAN : Strawberry 2.5 scoops w/ 5g CREATINE 500 in water.
mmmmmm.


felt like a good workout besides the Squats. I improved everywhere except the squats. So maybe I should chalk it up to an off day and take the gains come as they may.


....i'm just going to start a journal.

bigmoney
05-26-2008, 04:05 PM
Even though I did not see you squat, I can almost guarantee that you were not tight on the box. It is easy for a beginner like you or me to focus too much attention on other cues of the squat that staying tight on the box and on the descent becomes lost in the process. I guess this is a reminder. Apply it next time and I have no doubt you will get the 295 bro.

ZenMonkey
05-26-2008, 04:39 PM
i only did the 225s on the box. the fail and everything working up to it was no box. i also make a point to stay tight, it actually runs through my head while I do it. what exactly are you suggesting?

Phil Bailey
05-27-2008, 05:49 PM
For deadlifts, try speed deads. Sometimes people tend to fail because they don't have a good explosive start. You have to keep in mind that a deadlift has no stored energy because the weight lowering first then exploding up (ie. squat and bench). The other reason I see people fail is they tend to sit really low at the start of the dead, kind of like a ATG squat. THe dead is different so you have to play with it a little. Also, have some one look at your form to see if you are using proper technique. Most people tend to have their shoulders in front of the bar, but considering you do olympic lifts, you may need to start this way. Having your shoulders behind the bar will give you better leverage to pull fast off the floor. You can add rack pulls, but they wont fully address your issue, because your weak off the start not the mid way point. Lastly, you can try deadlifting off a block to increase the ROM.

Hope this helps.

ZenMonkey
05-27-2008, 08:52 PM
thanks Phil. I can probably lean back into it a bit more and pull the shoulders back, I think I already do this pretty well but I am sure I can improve on it. I don't have access to decent blocks at my gym, I will be using small 25s.. gonna look a bit silly, thats ok though. Besides that I think you are right with the lack of explosiveness. Where in my split do you think they can go? I cycle DLs in three weeks with ME, RE, and DE. I could make DE more often. I will add a link to the journal to come.


Thanks everybody!:strong:

ZenMonkey
05-27-2008, 08:53 PM
Even though I did not see you squat, I can almost guarantee that you were not tight on the box. It is easy for a beginner like you or me to focus too much attention on other cues of the squat that staying tight on the box and on the descent becomes lost in the process. I guess this is a reminder. Apply it next time and I have no doubt you will get the 295 bro.

thanks, they felt great today on the box!

Phil Bailey
05-28-2008, 05:06 AM
No prob.
I would put them on DE day either as the first movement or after speed work for squats. If you use them first and you are feeling good, feel free to add another RE movement or ME movent after. I find what worked best for me was using a weight somewhere between 50 to 60 percent of what I would normally do for a single from the floor. Then if you find you are a little slow lighten the weight and vice versa if your really fast. Do about 6 singles. This will give you a good idea of how good your form is and where you need to make adjustments.

Here is a link to a good article on deadlifting. It points out to most common deadlifting mistakes people make
http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=459744

Have you ever tried reverse band dealifts on ME day? These are great becuase you have lightened weight at the bottom to work on exploding up and as the weight moves up you have extra weight to work on the lock out. Also, your form will be the same as when you do a reg. dead.

Keep in mind that your body is in a slightly different poistion when you deadlift from pins vs deadlifing from the floor. So reverse band, band, chain deadlifts will give you a more natural feel and give you extra resistance on the lock out.

Just some food for thought.

ZenMonkey
06-08-2008, 09:58 AM
UPDATE:

Three days ago: A solid 2 reps w/ 295 on a very low box. So the squat is coming along.

Yesterday: 405 Conv DL for 3 singles. 425 for 2 singles. 405 for 2 more singles.


Thanks to everyone's advice I am breaking my walls down. I will have a 10 day rest period in about a week and a half, so I am bummed I wont be hitting the weights but I will be in the mountains doing some various forms of crossfit for active recovery. I hope this will do my lifts good... we will see.

But really though, I used all of the tricks and tools that were suggested here and got through the plateau. THANKS EVERYONE!!!

thewicked
06-08-2008, 01:54 PM
A FEW exercises that helped me get stronger off the floor...

pulls off a box..which make pulls off a floor seem like rack pulls

SPEED pulls..pulling singles for 8 reps with 200-300 less than your current max to really get used to generating explosive speed...


and pulls against bands but with the bands snug on teh bottom part of the lift....you'll find that even when using minis, when you go to use straight weight it'll feel SO much better!

ZenMonkey
06-08-2008, 02:15 PM
thanks wicked, Ive been using small 25lb plates and speed work. thanks!