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Question about squat form

Discussion in 'Female Health & Fitness' started by hourglassy, Aug 6, 2007.

  1. hourglassy

    hourglassy Active Member

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    I posted last week in the newbie forums and have a question about squat form that I hope doesn't sound too ridiculous!

    I started a 'newbie' weight training program 3 weeks ago. When evaluating me, my PT didn't feel I was strong enough to do proper squats. All my life I've been told to 'pretend I'm sitting down' while doing a squat, but my trainer felt that my torso was moving forward too much (and that my glutes were too weak to squat properly) so no squats on this program.

    I'm meeting with him again towards the end of this week for a new program, and would like to add some squats to my routine.

    Now, for the ridiculous part of the question: I have big boobs (36 DD) but also have a proportionate frame - could my boobs be affecting my form, i.e. could this explain why I'm leaning my torso forward (for balance?)

    I do feel the squat in my legs and glutes, my knees don't go over my toes, etc... I'm just wondering whether how I've been taught to squat in the past is totally wrong and something I have to 'unlearn', or whether I'm doing them ok but could somehow improve my form.

    Thanks in advance for any input you may have!
     
  2. droopy172

    droopy172 Active Member

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    That could be a factor as your back needs to support those breasts. Another thing a lot of people do is use machines or a smith machine for the time being until their body gets stronger. When I was helping training my friend she couldn't keep the bar stabalized on her back for her to do one squat. So i had her use the smith machine and do full squats as well as core strengthening exercises till she could do about 100lbs on the smith then switched her to freeweights. She thought 45lbs would be easy but when she did it she said doing 45lbs freeweights felt just as hard as doing 100+lbs on the smith machine LOL. She then complained she wanted to go back to using the machine.

    Also, crappy shoes will be a factor as well as most gym shoes have the heel portion platformed higher then the front this will make you lean forward more. Some chucks will fix that or weight lifting shoes, or be a cheapskate and just take off your shoes when doing squats so your flat footed i've done that before probably not the best solution but it keeps me off my toes.
     
    #2 droopy172, Aug 6, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2007
  3. jaybird-15

    jaybird-15 Active Member

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    You could start out with dumbbell squats to get used to the range of motion..also light lunges would be good..on the db squats,go all the way down with dbs even with your feet at the sides..I see a lot of females doing these at the gym..start light..Talk to the PT about it..

    Edit: Last Sat. I saw this woman your Mom's age deadlifting at the Y..I about fell over...She had a french curl bar loaded up to 95#, and was using perfect form..pretty neat...A bit unusual around these parts..
     
    #3 jaybird-15, Aug 6, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2007
  4. chicanerous

    chicanerous Elite Member
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    As long as:

    -- your back stays neutral, maintains posture, and doesn't round
    -- your shoulder blades remain retracted with your chest up
    -- your pelvis doesn't posteriorly tilt at the bottom of the ROM
    -- your knees push out as you descend
    -- your torso lowers "between" the legs
    -- your knees track in line with your toes
    -- your weight remains off your toes

    It doesn't matter that your torso is inclined. As long as you're minimizing and resisting any increased forward lean, the degree of lean that you naturally assume based on your body and the barbell's weight distribution is fine -- even if it is more inclined than one might arbitrarily say is normal.

    IMO, I think it's unlikely that your glutes are not strong enough. More likely, if there is a problem there, it is that you aren't able to use them properly to assist you during exercise. This is a nervous system motor control issue. You might want to check out Eric Cressey's series of articles:

    http://www.t-nation.com/readTopic.do?id=495189
    http://www.t-nation.com/findArticle.do?article=04-057-training
     
    #4 chicanerous, Aug 7, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2007
  5. hourglassy

    hourglassy Active Member

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    Thanks droopy, jaybird and chicanerous!

    My shoes do have a little bit of an elevated heel, but I tried squatting without them and I seem to be doing the same thing. I tried leaning back a little while extending my arms to stabilize myself, but as soon as I try to do that same range of motion without the arms, I lose my balance.

    All checks out on chicaneous's checklist, except I for the shoulder blades in part, which was helpful, as were the articles which I'm going to read over once more. :tucool:

    I'm going to start out with the db squats...would have tried the smith machine ones except my brand new gym has closed down due to bankruptcy :cry: I knew it was coming, but not so soon! Thankfully I have a db set at home and will be doing some of the Body for Life exercises until I find out whether this gym is going to re-open or I find another suitable one. I'm so pissed, I really loved this gym!
     

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