Front Squats

Building lower body strength and stability is a key in any training program. The squat is, without doubt, one of the most important exercises in helping develop lower body strength and stability and is a key exercise of most training programs. Gary Calcagno, strength coach at Oklahoma State University, prefers the Front Squat to the Back Squat. Coach Calcagno feels strongly that the front squat is more effective, comfortable and safer than the traditional front squat. He feels that the upright position of the elbows in the front squat naturally help to keep the back flatter and the athlete in a more upright position.

In the video clip below Coach Calcagno explains and demonstrates how to properly execute the front squat. The clip is from his training DVD devoted to developing power and explosiveness. For more information about that DVD click the link Training for Power and Explosiveness and learn six series of movements that include over 40 exercises.

The YouTube video below has sound, so please make sure that your sound is turned on and that you have access to the site. (Some schools block access to YouTube. If you are viewing in a schools setting and cannot view the clip, please contact your network administrator)

Here are Coach Calcagno’s key coaching points with regards to the front squat.

1.Roll the ball in the finger tips
2.Elbows should be upright like you were catching the bar on a clean
3.The bar should be resting on a shelf created by the front of the delt and upper chest
4.Feet should be between shoulder width and hip width apart
5.Toes should be pointed slightly outward
6.The first movement is for the hips to move back
7.The eyes should be ahead
8.The chin should be level
8.Weight on heels
10.Go down slightly past parallel(hamstrings to the Achilles)

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