The Dreaded Front Squat Made Easy With These Steps – Keelo Coach

Hey, Keelo Kids! Shana Alverson, Keelo Coach. Today we are talking about the front rack.  The first thing you want to make sure is that you have a rack that’s the appropriate height.  One way to know this is once the bar is on the rack, if you walk up to it it should come just beneath your collarbones  so that when you stand it up you don’t have to tippy-toe it out of the rack You want to be able to clear the J-cups by just taking a step back That’s one way to know your rack is high enough.  What NOT to do … don’t grab the bar with your whole hand and curl it off of the rack towards your body to try to get into a front rack position What happens here is that now the weight of the bar, it’s pretty significant and so my body wants to kind of curl the bar in and hold it there here’s the problem with that I’ve got a weight in my hands and as I go to curl the bar my bicep is going to contract and if my hands are in close, the forearm is going to run into the solid muscle there and I can’t get far enough back to get the bar to sit on my shoulders So, instead of picking the bar up and curling it to you, you’re going to leave it sitting on the rack let the rack support the weight of the bar as long as you can and you’re going to get into position and then when you actually lift the bar off of the rack you’re going to be doing it with your legs. If we break this down into steps, Step 1 – pretty easy  I’m going to start just with the fingertips on the bar DON’T want to put the whole hand on – that’s going to make it hard for me to get into a good position I want the bar to sit on the shoulders with the fingertips babysitting the bar and NOT have the bar sitting in the wrists like this It will feel like your wrist is snapping off if you hold it like this so this is due not only to the whole hand being on the bar but also the elbows being too low So just fingertips to start.  Step 2 – walk forward and just make sure, so I still have my fingertips on the bar now because the bar is being supported by the rack I have the flexibility to adjust. If I need my hands wider, or a little closer in to feel a little tighter that’s fine  but I mainly want to ensure that the index finger is not quite touching the outside of the shoulder  so hands are just wide enough so that when I go to lift the elbows the forearm is going around the side of the bicep That’s why I need my hands wide. If they’re in too close, I’m going to run into the flexed bicep.  Step 3 – is to get the bar to touch your throat. You’ll lower down into a little bitty squat here, just a partial squat  Please do NOT go into the backbend – don’t do that! Legit squat until the bar is touching your throat This feels a little threatening if you haven’t done it before  It feels kind of “ugh.. the bar is on my windpipe!” It’s natural,  it’s supposed to feel that way, you’ll get used to it. Step 4 – bar is touching my throat, I’m going to sweep the elbows in first like I’m trying to squeeze my pecs and do like a “body-builder” chest sort of and then the elbows are going to lift up, just the elbows so that when I do, now my delts, my shoulder muscles have made a little meat shelf for the bar to sit on the bar is NOT sitting in my hands, the fingertips are just baby-sitting it it’s really resting on my body. Now I’ve been doing this a long time so I can pretty easily slip in and out of that position but it might feel like a fairly extreme position to many who are just starting to learn But what you should feel when you squeeze the elbows in and up is the bar lift off of the rack So – I feel the lift-off, now I’m ready to stand up, walk out of the rack, set up for my squat  make sure as you go down that the elbows stay squeezed in and up you might want to re-focus on that just as the last thing you do before you squat down You’ll come back up. Then to re-rack it, you’re going to walk forward, walk, walk keep walking until you feel the bar hit the uprights on both sides  then just squat to set it back in the rack … and you’re free! Putting it all together – fingertips are going to go on the bar walk forward, touch your chest, make sure that your hands are outside the shoulders  now scooch down until you feel the bar on your throat, squeeze the elbows in and up the bar lifts off the rack. You’re going to stand up and step it out. Ready to squat.

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