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View Full Version : squat bar is a rollin'



JSully
11-18-2010, 02:44 PM
a quick preface: in august I weighed 310lbs and was hitting 500x5 beltless on squat.. no issues with the bar, just a little knee pain. the knee pain was caused by a lack in hamstring training due to my injury and i was babying it too much.. i lowered my squat down, just hitting 315 for reps and really smoking my hams for the next 6 weeks, after that i ended up pulling my groin (very minor, 2 week recovery time) and then i got some crappy stomach infection then followed it up with a nice sinus infection.. So here we are.

After about 6-8 weeks of nothing on my back heavier than 365 i started squatting heavy again. knees feel good, although stiff but that's a usual for a squatter. 2 weeks ago i put 405 on the bar and it was pretty easy, however, the bar kept rolling down my back. I've actually dropped about 15lbs of fat due to conditioning and diet so i don't think i've lost my "sweet spot" anymore. In fact, I find it every time I touch the bar. the bar i used last week had no knurling in the center so i figured that was the issue. this week i used a different bar that did have knurling in the middle andwhere my rear delts are. on all of my warmups i got down into position, put the bar right on the top of my rear delts and no issues at all. even on 315 no issues.. as soon as i got 405 on the bar, it starts rolling. the bar used to just sink in my rear delts perfectly and id barely even have to touch it to keep it good. i managed an easy set of 5 and worked up to 455x3 today but i spent more time worring about getting the bar back up on my shoulders rather than exploding out of the hole

has anybody else has this issue and fixed it? there's one different type of bar at my gym and i'm going to give it a shot, but i don't think it'll be too useful because the kurling doesn't seem as sharp as the bar i was using today..

theBarzeen
11-18-2010, 03:05 PM
Could be a lot of things...... we have a lifter who is strong as an ox but the bar always rolls on him...... without a video its hard to really guess why though..... it could be the loss in size, it could be that you are just holding the bar too low..... if you are relying on your rear delts to support the weight instead of the traps you could just have your hands out too wide....... really just a shot in the dark without video though.......

you could always just set the bar up on your traps, or you could just wear wrist wraps and squeeze the heck out of the bar...... again, just guessing without video.

gmen5681
11-18-2010, 03:08 PM
maybe try rubbing some chalk on your back too? this is a bit of a reach but maybe it was the shirt. ive always noticed the bar sits on my back a little better if its an older beat up shirt that's not soft anymore, sounds stupid and its probably in my mind but seems to feel different.

JSully
11-18-2010, 03:10 PM
i've got banded box squats this weekend, i'm going to try putting it a tidbit higher on my traps to see if that makes a difference.. i really don't remember that miniscule of stuff about when i squatted before.. it always just came naturally.. it is a possibility i'm putting it too low though..

i don't grip the bar either, never have been able to with my squat stance. i hold the bar about 2" inside the plates.. (however, now that I think about it, I have gone wider than usual lately due to my weight gain, I wonder if I'm losing tightness by holding my hands wider) and like i said, never had an issue previously. i appreciate the input, i'll take all of that into consideration.. a video is tough to come by because i rarely have a training partner, i guess i'll just be that douchebag to ask another dbag to video me with my phone, lol..

i never really paid attention to this stuff before, hahahaha.. i just did it.. typically when i take a 6-8 week layoff its because i stopped training all together and i've actually gotta build my squat back up. i've lost very little strength, now i've got to build my form back up? lol

JSully
11-18-2010, 03:47 PM
if you are relying on your rear delts to support the weight instead of the traps you could just have your hands out too wide

I think you hit the nail on the head with this. I just watched a comp vid of me straight on and I was holding the bar about 4-6" inside the plates. Since then (and since my 500x5 I referenced above) my shoulder girdle has gotten bigger due to hang cleans, snatches and high pulls and it's not comfortable to keep my hands in that close anymore which I'm guessing is a flexibility issue and as a result I've been letting my hands go out wider. I'm going to tighten it up this weekend and see how it feels. It's annoying having to think more about the bar than pushing the weight.

Thanks for your help/suggestions bro..

LanceGoyke
11-19-2010, 07:53 AM
Work on the shoulder mobility... it'll really save them. A buddy of mine strained his pec squatting a few months ago because his mobility is pretty lacking up top.

Chalk and a "rough" shirt should help, as previously mentioned. I would try to pull the bar down into your back too because you'll get the side bonus of engaging your lats.

mchicia1
11-19-2010, 09:24 AM
Definitely because of your hand spacing then. With your hands that wide, unless you are directly focusing on creating that "shelf" with your upper back, then the bar will roll down when the weight gets that heavy. Your arms are now responsible for helping to hold the weight up. I know when I bring my hands in as far as I can, my upper back tension is really good and I can actually squat a lot more because thinking about the bar being steady is one less thing I need to worry about. Daily dislocates with a broom stick have helped me tremendously. Then again, I am also much smaller than you so I might have it a lot easier getting my shoulders in a comfortable position.

Maybe train with a safety squat bar until your shoulders get better?

Sean S
11-19-2010, 11:05 AM
Besides what everyone else has said about bar position and hand width, I would recommend you actually pull down on the bar a bit like an isometric behind the nech pulldown. For me this helps keep the bar in place and also engages the lats, which helps me maintain my arch better. You don't have to try a max effort pulldown, just pull down with moderate pressure. If you pull down too hard you could make your elbows or biceps sore.

mchicia1
11-19-2010, 11:56 AM
Also, take a thumbless grip it will allow you to get your hands closer together.

JSully
11-19-2010, 03:59 PM
Thanks everyone, much appreciated. I already use a thumbless grip but I've never thought about pulling the bar down, I'm going to give that a shot too as it makes sense and would be nice to get an easier arch.

teeroy
11-19-2010, 04:45 PM
Thanks everyone, much appreciated. I already use a thumbless grip but I've never thought about pulling the bar down, I'm going to give that a shot too as it makes sense and would be nice to get an easier arch.

I would love to hear how it feels when pulling down on the bar. I've never heard of it either, but if it helps me keep a better arch I'm definitely interested.

Sean S
11-19-2010, 05:47 PM
I would love to hear how it feels when pulling down on the bar. I've never heard of it either, but if it helps me keep a better arch I'm definitely interested.

I don't remember where I first read it, but it makes sense based on the anatomy. Since the arms are anchored by holding the bar, the lats act as a back extensor based on their line of pull behind the axis of rotation for the vertebral column. They also insert into the lumbar fascia with the erector spinae, they will pull in a similar fashion. Like I said early, don't go crazy at first because it can beat up your biceps and elbows if you pull too hard.

SELK
11-19-2010, 10:09 PM
I have this problem.. I have almost solved it. For me what has worked is very different then what most have suggested:

- I widend out my grip. I am at max width on a standard 7 foot bar.
- instead of driving my elbows through, I am pushing them up (the opposite of through) to create a better shelf.

Just got to find what works for you.. I don't have this issue solved 100% yet. but its managable now.