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Thread: Box Squat %'s for High Bar/Narrow Stance Squatter

  1. #1
    Banned MPB's Avatar
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    Box Squat %'s for High Bar/Narrow Stance Squatter

    I'd like to have you guys' input on box squatting for an Olympic style squatter. For the Powerlifting stance, I believe it is generally recommended 50%~60% of one rep max. For Olympic lifters, Louie Simmons recommends 60-85% (it says in his book, Book of Methods) for dynamic day.

    What do you think about this? If I squat with a high bar/narrow stance style, do I need a different approach in terms of techniques and loading percentages? I have a box that is 5 inches below parallel. That's what I'm planning on using.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Really wouldn't over think this one.

    If you feel what Lou outlined is over what you're capable of right now, don't do it. Work your speed up to that or whatever you feel you need to do.


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  3. #3
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    Are you planning on competing in powerlfting? if you are a box that deep will make it impossible for you to get your form down.

    Are you raw or with gear. I always found that training raw off a box had little to know carry over to a raw meet squat.
    Best raw meet lifts
    Squat:765 with wraps. / 700 raw with out wraps
    Bench: 525
    Deadlift: 755
    Total: Raw with wraps: 2000. with out wraps: 1925

    Best lifts Equipped
    1050, 840, 715. Total: 2605

    Representing AtLarge Nutrition and EliteFTS

  4. #4
    LittleJake JSully's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottYard View Post
    Are you planning on competing in powerlfting? if you are a box that deep will make it impossible for you to get your form down.

    Are you raw or with gear. I always found that training raw off a box had little to know carry over to a raw meet squat.
    As amazing as your lifts are, I must respectfully disagree.

    I found that by box squatting, it greatly improved my hamstring/glute/hip development. It tought me how to sit back and into the squat, then explode up. I had knee problems before from my knees crossing over my toes and my quads were overdeveloped. Box squats fixed those problems. Within 5 months of box squatting, I took my max from 505 to 600lbs raw and my knees no longer hurt all day, every day.

    To the OP, if you can hit 5" below parallel with a narrow stance and stay back on your heels, more power too you. In my opinion, oly squats are more quad/glute focused and less with the hips. Obviously, hips play a factor, but my hips and hams never got beat up when I did close stance ATF squats, only my knees. I think it would be very difficult to hit a box 5" beow parallel, sit back, then explode up while staying close.

    Or are you talking about a touch-n-go rep so your ass just touches the box and you explode up? In that case, you should be fine, but I think that would lose some of the effectiveness of the box squat. I like to sit back then explode up from the hips..

    I agree with Travis' advice. If you don't feel you can do it, start with what you can do. When I first started box squatting, 300 was 60% of my max and there was no way I was doing that for speed, LOL.. I just worked up to it and kept on trucking.. Good luck!
    Jake Sullivan
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  5. #5
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    Thats why the forum is so great. Everyone is different and responds differently. In the end it all comes down to what works for you.
    Best raw meet lifts
    Squat:765 with wraps. / 700 raw with out wraps
    Bench: 525
    Deadlift: 755
    Total: Raw with wraps: 2000. with out wraps: 1925

    Best lifts Equipped
    1050, 840, 715. Total: 2605

    Representing AtLarge Nutrition and EliteFTS

  6. #6
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottYard View Post
    Thats why the forum is so great. Everyone is different and responds differently. In the end it all comes down to what works for you.
    Scott, I wonder if initially you didn't see a lot of transfer because your hips and hamstrings were already quite strong? I don't know. Just a thought


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  7. #7
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    I got strong at box squatting, But not at squatting. I could rawc box squat 775 for a double off a 15 inch box, but 675 at the time would have crushed me with out the box.
    Best raw meet lifts
    Squat:765 with wraps. / 700 raw with out wraps
    Bench: 525
    Deadlift: 755
    Total: Raw with wraps: 2000. with out wraps: 1925

    Best lifts Equipped
    1050, 840, 715. Total: 2605

    Representing AtLarge Nutrition and EliteFTS

  8. #8
    LittleJake JSully's Avatar
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    just curious, was the 15" box at or below parallel?

    I box squat with a 12" box (my parallel is about 13.5-14") and it has done wonders for my raw squat..
    Last edited by JSully; 11-24-2009 at 02:21 PM.
    Jake Sullivan
    6' - 280lbs - 29yrs old - Professional Highland Games Athlete
    curently off-season
    HG training log = road to pro
    youtube channel = www.youtube.com/xtra0t

  9. #9
    Banned MPB's Avatar
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    I've seen very good gains for bench and deadlift after adding dynamic work. So I thought I'd do the same for my squat. I'd have to widen my stance a bit if I really wanted to sit back, but I can still do it with a narrow stance.

    Thanks Travis and LittleJake. I'll experiment and start with what's appropriate for me.
    Last edited by MPB; 11-24-2009 at 02:15 PM.

  10. #10
    Go Bears Pete22's Avatar
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    I've been training for a raw meet coming up, and I squat relatively narrow and medium-ish high bar. For my DE days, I'm using a 10" box (I'm 5'11") and my percentages usually go in a wave from around 50-55-60%.

    I'm also using accommodating resistance (bands/chains) with these straight weight percentages, so they're actually higher but I'm not about to start calculating it.
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  11. #11
    Wannabebig Member C-Sobrino's Avatar
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    I would imagine you should choose your box squat depending on your weaknesses:

    "For weak hips you used a below parallel box with a wide stance, weak quads- use a parallel box, for lower back power close stance and below parallel, for the typical sticking point a box two inches above parallel." - From "The Evolution of Westside Barbell Training Part I" by Mark Reifkind
    "Test all things; hold fast what is good." - 1 Thessalonians 5:21

    "For me the most important thing is to beat myself, to lift the barbell that up to this point I have not yet lifted." - Alexeyev

  12. #12
    Administrator chris mason's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottYard View Post
    I got strong at box squatting, But not at squatting. I could rawc box squat 775 for a double off a 15 inch box, but 675 at the time would have crushed me with out the box.
    When I first tried them I noticed the same thing. I would get stuck in the hole with a regular squat. I think it was because the box I was using was too high. Once I started using accomodating resistance in the form of bands and varying the box height every few weeks I saw a significant transfer to my raw squat.


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  13. #13
    Westside Bencher Travis Bell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottYard View Post
    I got strong at box squatting, But not at squatting. I could rawc box squat 775 for a double off a 15 inch box, but 675 at the time would have crushed me with out the box.
    I was going to comment on the box height, but Chris beat me to it.

    What Chris said is what Louie usually has guys do who are struggling in the hole or train raw.

    Lower rotating box heights and rotating accomadating resistance. Also, a lot of guys just plop right down on the box (not saying you do, just commenting on what I've seen some others do) which negates part of the concentric part of the squat. You have to come down the same way you would on a regular squat


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  14. #14
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    it was about an inch high. Ill have one of our guys try it again but with a low box. See if anything happens.
    Best raw meet lifts
    Squat:765 with wraps. / 700 raw with out wraps
    Bench: 525
    Deadlift: 755
    Total: Raw with wraps: 2000. with out wraps: 1925

    Best lifts Equipped
    1050, 840, 715. Total: 2605

    Representing AtLarge Nutrition and EliteFTS

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