Written by Simon Cushman
How To Master the Front Squat
Before we start to discuss how to perform the perfect squat, we first need to assess what the perfect squat is. There are many variations that can be used, and even those variations can have variations depending on body shape, limb length, hip joint depth and goals. So let’s start, for argument’s sake, with a traditional front squat.
I’ll explain the ‘gold standard’ first, although if you have imbalances or weaknesses this may not be applicable. Personally, I was born to squat, with short limbs in comparison to my trunk, good ankle and hip mobility and stability. I’ll then go to talk about two common errors and how you might go about fixing them.
Benefits of the Front Squat
The front squat can be used to increase the strength in your legs and core. Also, mastering the front squat will improve your clean.
Master the Front Squat
- Take the bar from the rack and position yourself into a front rack position
- Squat down below parallel
- Drive back up into a standing position
- ✔ Keep your elbows high
- ✔ Keep a full grip around the bar
- ✔ Distribute your weight evenly
- ✔ Perform in front of a mirror, that way you can see when your form is out
A common fault is when the knees do not move directly over the toes but fall inwards. This can be caused from the foot arches falling, a weakness of the external hip muscles or a tightness of the adductor muscles. In any case, you should always be warming up to potentiate the muscles and mobilising through the joints.
This will include some light and bodyweight squats getting the correct pattern, as well as some exercises such as crab walks, clam shells, hip thrusts, leg swings, spiderman stretch, pigeon stretch and Russian lunges. You can also try squatting with a small resistance band just above your knee and focus on forcing your knees wide against the resistance.