Tag Archives: split squat

Preventive maintenance for your workout?

I have an online client who mentioned that he was not feeling great with the front squats in his program, but he was pretty confident he was doing them well since he is an experienced lifter. He is smart and self-aware, so I tended to think he was probably right. But I asked him to get someone to video his front squat because I have a pretty good eye for small details (I’m a ski instructor – if you can find small faults as someone launches past you on a ski hill, standing still on flat land is a piece of cake) and I just wanted to see what was up. Partly I just wanted to be sure that it was good form, because that would impact what exercises I would give to him.

He did, and before I even got the link he noted that he could see one major flaw in his front squat and that he was confident that I’d be able to help with it. I saw the video, which his son uploaded to youtube, and he is correct! The front view of the squat looks great – shoulders look great, the knees don’t cave in, and no lateral (side) shift. This is the view that you would have if trying to watch your own form at the gym if you had a mirror in front of you. Then came the side view, which lets face it, we don’t get to see. When you’re deep into a squat with weight on your back, you really don’t want to be turning your head to the side to check form. It could lead to bad things for your neck or back. But in fact, the side view showed the big flaw in his squat: his knees move way too forward as he comes down and his heels rise up slightly.
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Workouts are more fun when you succeed

As a trainer, I spend a lot of time trying to convince people how amazing training is. I like to think I’m convincing. I also like to think that the awesomeness of the workouts I put together and my great coaching skills seal the deal for people once they come to give me a try. Or that they think I’m hilarious and can’t wait to come for another session to spend more time with me. But in reality, there is a bit more to it. Here’s something I’ve come to learn: For many people, working out is not actually fun. And for these people, there are actually things they’d rather do than workout. Shocking, right?
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To Lunge or To Squat? That is the question.

This is a clip from a presentation I gave at the Ottawa Ski Show called “Training Tips for Injury Risk Reduction & Performance”. This particular clip addresses squats and lunges and a spectrum of exercises in the squat progression. I think the only exercises missing from the progression I presented are the TRX rear-foot elevated split squat and TRX single-leg squat. Once you see the video, I’m sure you’ll know where to put them.
Continue reading To Lunge or To Squat? That is the question.