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View Full Version : Maxing out with squats??



jake020
08-06-2003, 07:26 PM
My legs have some really good development, but I don't squat very heavy at all...I don't think I ever do more than 225 (5'10" 175lb). I see guys all the time w/ "chicken" legs squatting a lot more than that...why is this?? This may sound naive, but I would think since my legs are much more muscular I would be able to lift as much weight as them, I mean I see guys that are like 5'10" and 150lb squatting over 225...how can they do this?...and how do you even max out with a squat?

unshift
08-06-2003, 07:33 PM
to max out with a squat, you squat till you can only do 1 rep

squatting has a lot to do with the quads, yes, but the more you do it and the heavier you go, you'll realize that the hip flexors, hamstrings, calves, and especially lower back have a lot to do with it too. the squat works quite a few things besides quads :)

Scott S
08-06-2003, 07:34 PM
Are they doing "real squats"? Nearly everybody in my gym loads up with 200 lbs, but they only go down a couple of inches. :rolleyes:

On the other hand, here I am, proud to have just broken 115 lbs for squats. (In my defense, I've only been squatting for a couple of months.)

Have you been progressing on squats? If you are stuck, maybe you need to try other things to get your legs stronger. Wish I had better advice than that! :(

unshift
08-06-2003, 07:36 PM
oh yeah, most people are gonna tell you to max out in the safety rack with pins set and all that garbage.... i perfer to dent the floor instead :p (i dropped 315lbs last week -- loudest crash i've ever heard!) :cool:

ryan1117
08-06-2003, 07:39 PM
Size does not always equal strength. Strength can be independent of the amount of muscle mass.

Plus, some of these so-called skinny guys actually have a decent amount of lean body mass but low bodyfat.

For Example:
165@7% = 153 pounds of lean body mass
180@17% = 149 pounds of lean body mass

Most untrained eyes would probably think that person 2 has more lean body mass, yet person 1 has more despite looking skinny.

I'm not saying that everyone who lifts a lot for their weight has a super low bodyfat, I'm just showing another possibility.

harryhoudini66
08-06-2003, 10:27 PM
I am with Scott on this one. I did squats today and was able to do 185 (third week). I hardly see anyone do squats at my gym and when they do, they only go down about five inches. I go all the way down and sometimes wonder if I will make it back up.

The guys you see with thin legs may only workout their quads and have ****ty calves. Unless the guys wear those shorts from the 70ís I donít see how you really could determine the condition of their legs.

Rudee
08-06-2003, 11:47 PM
Squats are one of my favorite exercises. I attribute most of my leg mass to squats, and that includes glutes and hamstrings. I normally do sets of 8 with 315. That's parallel, no wraps. Warmup = 30 min on the lifecycle. I'm able to do 405 for 3 reps if needed, but normally don't go less than 8 reps. I could go much heavier on the Smith Machine, however I don't like the feel of it when it comes to squatting.

estropes
08-07-2003, 06:36 AM
Unshift,

Remember this!!!

I had a friend in High School that just used to drop the weight in squat. One day he messed up and on the release he didn't move his finger quick enough. 315 was just enough to complete detach his middle finger from his right hand!!!!

Relentless
08-07-2003, 06:44 AM
Originally posted by jake020
I mean I see guys that are like 5'10" and 150lb squatting over 225...how can they do this?...and how do you even max out with a squat?

Check out what the powerlifting records are for 148lb category.

225 is nothing, really. . . and these are POWERLIFTING squats, which are quite deep, usually just below parallel.

If you want to get better at squatting, squat more. Seeking out a powerlifting coach in your area for a session or two can't hurt. I did that recently and had training sessions with two nationally-known PLs/coaches -- for free. In fact, ElPietro, from this board, now trains with one of the guys that coached us. Do a little research and see if you can hook up with your regional/state PL association or union.

jake020
08-07-2003, 07:52 AM
All good information, in response to How I see their quads...well these guys usually load on the decline leg press and ask me to "spot" them (I work at the gym). I can see when they do this exercise that there quads aren't that developed. I watch the squats and many go to parallel (i thought lower than that was terrible on the knees). I understand the difference between lifting for power and hypertrophy, but I still don't see how some of these kids squat with the amount of weight they use. Oh, and if I ever "dropped" the weight...especially 315 on the floor...I am sure that would not go over well with the staff, which I am a part of and would not be happy if someone did that while I was on duty.

Goin_Big
08-07-2003, 07:54 AM
I can say one thing about this thread. Listening to some of these squats makes me no longer worry about my back injury, hehehehehehehahahahahaha, lol.

btw, don't go heavy until you are ready to go heavy. Keep this phrase in mind when you are lifting. Squat with confidence, not with an ego.

Ja113
08-07-2003, 09:40 AM
Also keep in mind that training for size and training for strength are different. When you're training for size, you're more concerned about stimulating muscle fibers in order to stimulate growth. Yes, you will get stronger as your body compensates BUT, it's not the priority. Whereas with strength training, say powerlifting for example, you'll train for speed and power (using weights near your 1RM). Sure you'll gain some size but training that way isn't the most optimal way to gain size.

jake020
08-07-2003, 11:43 AM
So what I am gathering from all this is just to do what I can and not worry about the "max" thing since I am going for hypertrophy. Just focus on performing them the correct way...I like that "squat with confidence not an ego" phrase, puts it in perspective.

XoVegasPrincess
08-07-2003, 11:57 AM
ouch! dont start talking about broken middle fingers..im going to have nightmares, just stay in a rack. as far as maxing, u need to squat more to strengthen up ur legs; its not so much how much weight ur putting on. dont sacrifice ur form to lift heavier weight, thats probably why alot of guys u see that r way smaller can lift more because they work at squatting and they have perfect form and know how to gather all their powerand strength from their quads, hamstrings, calves, lower back etc. and drive it up even if they have chicken legs. im 5'1 108lbs and i have squatted 190 and ive seen girls twice my size that look absolutley pathetic when they squat. they arch or roll their back and dont even go down more than a few inches. so my advice to u is to squat what u know u can do for like 3 or 4 sets for 10 and really concentrate on ur form. as far as maxing, try a pyramid lift. ( this is what i would do; of course much lighter weight than recommended for u) ex: warm up with the bar or very light weight for a set of 10, then 95lbs for set of 10, 115x8, 135x6, 165x4,175x2,1rm at 180lbs and if i feel good and i can go heavier then i would put a lil more weight on each time doing a 1rm until i know its too heavy. pyrmaid lifts for me give me an idea of where i am and how much i can lift without jumping up in weight too fast or just guessing. but thats just my suggestion i dont really know much about anything, so if im wrong someone please inform me because i also have alot to learn from u weightlifting gods out there. ok im going to stop talkin. byebye

MixmasterNash
08-07-2003, 12:28 PM
Jake, I'm a similar build (but skinnier).

Squatting for me has very little to do with the quads, especially when going to parallel or lower. Sure, they get worked, and are a primary mover, obviously, but my quad strength is much higher than the rest of my body's ability to squat. I think this is the case for many people, especially runners and cyclists. What this means is that you need to get a strong ass: do a lot of deadlifts too.

Here's what worked for me:
For size: 5 set pyramid of 10 reps each, e.g. 135/185/225/185/135
For power:10, 8, 4, 2 e.g. 135/225/275/315

Finally, stance has everything to do with it. I've been recently squatting very narrow ("bodybuilder" style) and it's much harder than wide ("powerlifter" style).

Rudee
08-07-2003, 01:04 PM
I found a good way to get out of a squatting rut is to do Super Slow repetitions. i.e. 2 sets of 4-5 reps, with 10 seconds positive, 10 seconds negative. (Warning: This is not for the weak stomached) Each set should last 80-100 seconds long. You will only need 2 sets, but when done properly it's mighty painful but the results will be phenominal. If you don't have a spotter you can do it on the Smith Machine or Power Rack. Follow this up with Super Slow lying or Seated leg curls (Super Slow style)

jugheadkills
08-07-2003, 01:30 PM
i have chicken legs, and i cant squat sh1T

Rudee
08-07-2003, 03:25 PM
Originally posted by jugheadkills
i have chicken legs, and i cant squat sh1T

The more reason why squats should be the cornerstone of your lifting routine.

jugheadkills
08-07-2003, 04:02 PM
yea, i see at as just more of a reason to do it. the only way to get better at something is to do it. giving up gets no one anywhere.

jake020
08-07-2003, 04:47 PM
Well, I did 3 sets of 10 at 135 and really concentrated on form and went all the way down. I coud have handled a little more weight, but didn't want to overdo it just yet. I definitely noticed that I have NOT been going all the way down in past workouts. I was definitely feeling it, I could barely do sh*t on the leg press which I hit immediately after the squats. (of course, after I was through with the rack, some "chicken" legger came over and piled more weight, and this time I noticed the squats were what I now know to be called "half" squats.)

SaulDSL
08-07-2003, 06:11 PM
It's all in the hips, I went to a special powerlifting trainer who gave me a list of exercises to make it so my back was more inline with my hips when I squat, this way my hips were taking the load a lot more than my legs or lower back, a week after doing these exercises I go back in to the gym and boom I was doing 505x5 when a week earlier I was doing 445x5.

NormanMellow
05-28-2009, 07:57 AM
My legs have some really good development, but I don't squat very heavy at all...I don't think I ever do more than 225 (5'10" 175lb). I see guys all the time w/ "chicken" legs squatting a lot more than that...why is this?? This may sound naive, but I would think since my legs are much more muscular I would be able to lift as much weight as them, I mean I see guys that are like 5'10" and 150lb squatting over 225...how can they do this?...and how do you even max out with a squat?

............the only way anyone can do it (and i speak from experience btw), is by set after set of brutal squatting. there's no other way. week in. week out. i speak from experience. i'm that EXACTLY that guy you're referring to (but i'm 5'8")

jwood1988
05-28-2009, 08:18 AM
It's all in the hips, I went to a special powerlifting trainer who gave me a list of exercises to make it so my back was more inline with my hips when I squat, this way my hips were taking the load a lot more than my legs or lower back, a week after doing these exercises I go back in to the gym and boom I was doing 505x5 when a week earlier I was doing 445x5.

Care to share any of those exercises?? They sound great.

danmac
05-28-2009, 08:57 AM
Care to share any of those exercises?? They sound great.

the post was from 6 years ago so you probably wont get an answer, but i would love to put 60 lbs on my squat in a week too haha.

blackboard
05-28-2009, 09:11 AM
My legs have some really good development, but I don't squat very heavy at all...I don't think I ever do more than 225 (5'10" 175lb). I see guys all the time w/ "chicken" legs squatting a lot more than that...why is this?? This may sound naive, but I would think since my legs are much more muscular I would be able to lift as much weight as them, I mean I see guys that are like 5'10" and 1ng 50lb squatting over 225...how can they do this?...and how do you even max out with a squat?

With Chicken legs are u talking about the Knee down? From the Knee down Squats have done little for me. You might think I have chicken legs lol but from the knee up everything is big. Its hard to fit in regular jeans from the hips downs to the knees.

Travis Bell
05-28-2009, 09:57 AM
ooooold thread guys. Probably not going to get a ton of answers here.