Increase Your Squats Weight Instantly!

Discussion in 'Powerlifting & Strongman' started by Fadi, Jul 17, 2014.

  1. Fadi

    Fadi Well-Known Member

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    Increase Your Squat Weight Instantly!
    Force Dissipation

    Ah, here we go again, another empty promise for the day; so what’s new?! Well let me assure you fellow iron warriors, the promise I’m making here is not another one of those empty magazine promises, where if you just take this or that pill, or follow such and such a program, you’d turn into a superman or wonder woman overnight.

    This here is the real deal. This short article of mine is not about that Russian or Bulgarian squat program, nor is it about squat technique as such. This article is about what you’ve got underneath your feet…your shoes!

    I’m willing to take a guess that about 95% of everyone reading these words is wearing the wrong shoes when it comes to that almighty exercise we discuss so much on public forums. Yes, it’s the king of leg strength exercises we come to love and respect; his name is King Squat!

    Now we all want to feel comfortable and secure, that goes for our feet also. We go shopping and we spend a hefty sum of money on the most comfortable shoes we could find, or could afford at the time. Usually these shoes are great looking and mighty comfy. They have some of the best shock-absorbing materials you could ever find. The feeling one gets from such a comfortable shoes is as if one was walking on air. After all, who wants to damage their feet walking or running on hard surfaces? Not me that’s for sure.

    [​IMG]


    But hang on a minute; we’re talking about squatting with some heavy duty weights here, not running or walking…SQUATTING!

    I won’t be using two yards long words here to try and impress you with some science etc. When was the last time you saw a sprinter wearing weightlifting shoes and racing with them? The sprinter’s shoes have spikes on the front portion where the feet make contact with the ground as the sprinter is bursting through like a bullet. Shoes that fit the occasion beautifully.

    [​IMG]


    Now for the fun bit: Force Dissipation.

    Now imagine this with me if you will. You're sitting on the floor with your legs half extended forward (as in a half-squat position). You’re placing your feet against a heavy object which you intend to push forward away from you. You have your back against the wall for some serious stabilisation and force generation. You begin to push and are happy to see that heavy object moving slowly forward. Now imagine this; what would happen if suddenly the wall you’ve had your back against is taken away? Your legs and glutes are still your legs and glutes are they not? Well then why has that heavy object stopped moving forward and why have you lost your strength? The answer is because the object that was preventing the generated strength of your legs from dissipating has been eliminated. We’re talking about the wall that was giving support to your back here remember? Ok, let’s look at it from a slightly different perspective. What would you say if I was to magically bring that wall back but with a small variation to its composition? I mean a wall is bloody rock solid is it not? Well how about I make it a little bit soft, you know, cushioning it a bit to make it more comfortable on your back when you’re pushing and applying force against that heavy object in front? Basically what I’ve done is I’ve taken a non-compressible wall and exchanged it with one that is all nice and soft for you; all in the name of comfort!

    Now transfer the above example of lost strength to when you’re squatting. You’re coming out of the squat, pushing against the ground with everything you’ve got; or are you? If you’re wearing runners, then you can bet some of the force you’re generating upwards has been lost through your shoes instead of trapping every atom of it to help you explode up. An example of power dissipation is what happens when you run on soft beach sand.

    Have you picked the magic words yet?

    Soft Cushioning
    Compressible
    Shock-absorbing


    The above three qualities need to be eliminated from your shoes the next time you intend to take my challenge and instantly beat your pre-existing squat poundages. Bodybuilders spend a large sum of their money on supplements etc. How about allocating some much needed attention to the only two feet you have and investing in some proper weightlifting shoes. I have not touched on weightlifting shoes’ feet stability factor or the way they stabilise you if you lack flexibility in the ankle joint. Usually inflexibility of the ankle joint results in the heels rising off the ground. Failing to keep the heels grounded while the knee travels forward in the squat position can spell disaster for the knee joints and ligaments where stress is magnified tremendously.


    [​IMG]

    This article was simply written to highlight the point of strength "leakage" if you like. I’ll leave it here and leave the rest for you to reflect upon. The decision is yours; make it wisely.


    Thanks for reading.




    Fadi.




     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2014
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  3. whore moan

    whore moan Well-Known Member AGJ Supporter

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    Loving your posts fadi.
    I squat my heavy sets with my shoes kicked off... get a few funny looks squatting in a pair of socks but it does work. I find it seems to take a bit of unwanted sideways pressure off my ankles.
     
  4. Riley

    Riley Well-Known Member

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    So basically wear weightlifting shoes?

    I guess the average guy in the gym still squats in his normal shoes. But most who take things a bit more seriously either use or have heard of weightlifting shoes.

    At IPF worlds the majority of lifters used weightlifting shoes.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. Budgie

    Budgie Well-Known Member

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    I used to squat in asic kayano's but found I tipped forward too much under heavy weight, now I wear Adidas neo's which are not the prettiest but are flat :)
     
  6. tbone

    tbone Still benching..

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    Hey Fadi, another good read thanks. But one thing strikes me: yes for lifting the maximum weight, you want to execute the lift in the most efficient manner. But for bodybuilding... well, we actually want to work the muscle as hard as possible, don't we. If the shoes make the lift fractionally harder, then that's not necessarily a bad thing... Am I right?
     
  7. Fabz

    Fabz Well-Known Member

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    I use those nikes that bend really easy to train but when on my squat days I use vans.

    Not as good as a lifting shoe but at least its a flat sole.
     
  8. Reddust

    Reddust Undercover Mod AGJ Supporter

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    But in theory if you are lifting more weight aren't you recruiting more muscle fibres....
    So many other variables i know but the basic principle is there
     
  9. Fadi

    Fadi Well-Known Member

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    Of course it would work squirt,. Why wouldn't it! Underneath your feat is hard when you have no shoes on, so force dissipation is a non issue for you mate. Well done for recognising what works for you and sticking with it.



    Fadi.
     
  10. Fadi

    Fadi Well-Known Member

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    Since you have decided to frame your comment in a form of a question, I will reply to it. My answer is no, that's not basically it Riley. I wrote about the reason behind the "why" of doing something, rather than simply suggesting people do it because I think it's a good idea. We already have issues with both bodybuilders as well as strength athletes knowing the "hows and the whats" of what needs to be done, yet neither delve into the why we do what we do. Not the best nor the safest position to be in in my opinion.
     
  11. tbone

    tbone Still benching..

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    Yes I agree there is obvious inherent benefit in moving more weight. But no, you can recruit the same muscle fibres lifting less weight less efficiently (or at at higher level of fatigue, say). In my opinion.
    Your thoughts [MENTION=6669]Fadi[/MENTION] ?
     
  12. Fadi

    Fadi Well-Known Member

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    Hi tbone and thanks for your question.

    I hear what you're saying my friend. However, and as I've said in the thread where someone asked about the definition of the word intensity, my reply to that was a single word: effort! So now coming back to what you are saying here re creating a position where inefficiency is applied to a certain exercise to make it harder, i.e....the wearing of runners (with their cushioning effect) to make life a bit more difficult on the muscles in order to gain maximum fibre stimulation.

    There's only one problem here tbone...by wearing the runners, we're actually taking away from applying maximum effort on the worked muscles, which would result in a less than optimal stimulation (for our effort). In plain English, you're not gonna get your money's worth for the effort you're putting in. Or put another way, you will increase the pressure and stress on your joints by loading the bar with more weight than necessary, to compensate for the loss in effort....which is "leaking" through those runners.

    In Olympic weightlifting, your aim would be to lift in the most efficient way,...here (most of the time) it means using momentum to your advantage. Something that would take away from maximum muscle fibre stimulation in bodybuilding. Best example I can think of here would be the three different form of the overhead press.

    1. Military press
    2. Push press
    3. Power jerk

    You've got less and less shoulder stimulation as you go from 1 to 3. A MMA fighter would do well with the #2,....but that's for another thread.





    Fadi.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2014
  13. tbone

    tbone Still benching..

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    Agree you're not going to get the same result (in terms of the lift) but I'd flip that around and say actually you must apply MORE effort, recruiting more muscle fibres to achieve the lift when executing it less efficiently or at some kind of mechanical DISadvantage.

    I guess my point is, in Oly or powerlifting your goal is to make the lift as easy as possible and therefore maximise the weight lifted. Most efficient technique, explosive power, CNS training..
    In bodybuilding, why would you want to make a lift easier? You want to cause as much micro-trauma to the muscle as possible. Eliminate momentum, high reps, drop sets etc.
     
  14. Fadi

    Fadi Well-Known Member

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    I honestly don't like the idea of restricting "muscle overload" to some increase weight on a bar. If you would just think of effort as the umbrella , the all encompassing umbrella, where everything you know as high intensity, high volume, high reps, sets, training frequency, and all bodybuilding methods applied (going to failure, GVT, ascending descending sets, rest pause etc. etc.) to shock a muscle fibre and force new adaptation...if you would put all these principle and methods under the word effort, you would seriously free your mind and begin to have a much more fruitful results to your workouts.

    Please know this: effort or the application of effort, is not restricted to a single workout. By that I mean your body's effort overtime is what really count here if progress is to be your friend. What does that mean? It means using the GPO method to training. That's Gradual Progressive Overload. Couple that with some periodisation (which is modified to suite your chosen sport), and you've got yourself a guaranteed winning formula to training. No guess work, and all in your control, instead of you (as an athlete) being controlled by your program!



    Fadi.
     
  15. Fadi

    Fadi Well-Known Member

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    tbone, have you considered the added stress on your ligament tendons and joints overall Sir? Something to factor in whenever you decide to create a program for yourself. The runners are like a bucket that has a hole in it. Would it not be wiser to either fix the hole, or change the bucket altogether!

    I'm not sure if I'm answering your question to be honest. You tell me! No one would want to make it easier on the muscles, especially when the name of the game is to make them work hard,,,I'm with you on that.



    Fadi.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2014
  16. Peteswah

    Peteswah Member

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    thoughts on squatting barefoot? Should probably mention that if your a poor man like me and cant afford dedicated squatting shoes chuck taylors are good all rounders. Good read.
     
  17. lucky

    lucky Muscleworx stringer free

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    I go barefoot, works for me, if I get caught and am made to put my shoes back on there is a noticeable difference.
     
  18. Yodave

    Yodave Member

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    Good old Arnold does it bearfoot
     
  19. dw_18

    dw_18 New Member

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    there are some good points here. You can't say either are wrong because there is purpose in both methods due to the intent behind

    Squatting weaker in the running shoes on one hand forces other balance muscle to strengthen up building stability
    And on the other using an 'appropriate ' shoe suited to your foot squatting style to keep stable eliminating risks of injury to tendons and joints and so forth

    If you know what you are doing and for what purpose and know when hazards are lingering and to stop then you keep doing what you have set out to do

    I've recently started to squat in a nike Romaleos 4 shoe. My knees at my age have copped a beating over the years and ive found they do help keep focus on my groove better lowering risk of hurting them more than needed
    Ive always had a low depth squat regardless of weight and makes its just how ive learnt and im always safe out of the hole but my issue is on the way out of there through parallel. The show keeps me tight no roll and im now benefiting from the slight tilt from the solid heel. But we are all different. Ive never had heels off the floor ever either my squat is always a flat foot no matter how low my ass gets
     
  20. flow

    flow baked beans Connoisseur

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    Barefoot is great if you cant afford oly shoes with elevated heels. It allows a firm contact to the ground. Donny Thompson has a great video series on it.
    @whore moan be careful in just sock mate. It can cause you to slip out. Easier to just go bare feet if possible.
     

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