It is the fastest barbell movement, and since we are talking about it, it is also the coolest looking lift in the world!
Let’s look at this in terms of how we began to move as toddlers: first we learned how to crawl; then we moved on to walking; and once we figured that out, we started running.
Why do we try to reverse that order in the gym?
CrossFit Equation: If (snatching= running) and (overhead squatting= walking), then (_______= crawling).
Answer: ________= squatting.
So to recap, we first polish up on the squat, then hone in the overhead squat, and lastly work towards mastering the snatch. Today we are going to focus on the squat.
Squat: In a recent post, coach Teddy talked about the importance of range of motion. If we are in fact going to start with squatting then let’s make sure that range of motion is one of our priorities in our squat.
Watch Kendrick Farris in this snatch video. Where do you think he squats to? Stopping at parallel is not the goal.
Another priority in the squat is to keep tension throughout your squat. You want to actively push through your midline. You do this by engaging your core as if you were pushing into a weight belt on the way down and all the way back up.
If your first move at the bottom of your squat is to lean your chest forward, then you are completely taking your quadriceps out of the equation and putting the load on your lower back and hips. Is this you? Have you hurt yourself or been super sore in areas that you shouldn’t when squatting? Take a deeper look into this then.
Along with keeping tension in your midline, focus on keeping the weight directly over the middle of your foot. The second you lose tension and your chest dips forward, the weight is now over your toes. Not good.
There are many other facets of the squat that we can talk about, and we will at some point, but for today let’s focus on pushing our range of motion to a place that might be out of our normal comfort zone, while keeping tension through our midline.
Homework: Instead of putting yourself in crappy positions just to get a quicker score or to put up more weight, try the above technique tips to keep you working towards bigger and better goals within the gym!