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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 07-17-2012, 08:19 AM   #1
Erik Knudsen
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Overhead squat help

This movement just seems to give me fits. Basically any weight over 95 lbs just seems to be a real challenge.

How wide should the grip be? I prefer a more 'narrow' grip as this feels more stable. I think the tradeoff is that you need lots of shoulder flexibility.

With the wider grip I feel some strain in the shoulders and also my wrists hurt. I think my back/shoulders give out before anything else. With me it seems that the issue is balance and stability.

Also - I tend to feel this exercise more in the hips and less in the quads.

Erik
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Old 07-17-2012, 08:40 AM   #2
Brian Strump
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Re: Overhead squat help

There are so many things from the ankles to your wrists that could be issues. A video tape of you doing them would be helpful, otherwise, regardless of how helpful the info seems, we're all guessing.
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Old 07-17-2012, 08:52 AM   #3
Erik Knudsen
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Re: Overhead squat help

Will try and shoot some video soon.

Erik
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Old 07-17-2012, 09:29 AM   #4
Keith Miller
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Re: Overhead squat help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik Knudsen View Post
This movement just seems to give me fits. Basically any weight over 95 lbs just seems to be a real challenge.

How wide should the grip be? I prefer a more 'narrow' grip as this feels more stable. I think the tradeoff is that you need lots of shoulder flexibility.

With the wider grip I feel some strain in the shoulders and also my wrists hurt. I think my back/shoulders give out before anything else. With me it seems that the issue is balance and stability.

Also - I tend to feel this exercise more in the hips and less in the quads.

Erik
Hate to say it, but all of the things you say are absolutely right. The OHS is NOT a quad exercise, it's a balance and upper body strength exercise. Your grip should be wide, same as you snatch with. You need to stretch your shoulders (think dislocates, etc). Your wrists will have to get used to it. If you're doing high rep sets, then you could wear wrist wraps.
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Old 07-17-2012, 10:40 AM   #5
Eric Montgomery
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Re: Overhead squat help

Go to mobilitywod.com and search overhead squat--pick out a few of his mobility drills for the movement and see which ones give you fits. Then work those a few times a week in addition to throwing some relatively lightweight OHS into your warmups on a regular basis and you'll see improvements. OHS problems tend to be due to shoulder or thoracic mobility problems, or sometimes it's a hip/hamstring thing.
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Old 07-17-2012, 11:15 AM   #6
Todd R Miller
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Re: Overhead squat help

Eric has great suggestions. When I started Crossfit, my wife laughed at me when I couldn't do a single OHS with one of those padded 15 lb fitness bars.

Mobilitywod.com helped a lot. But mostly, I did what Eric suggested. I did OHSs with a stick as part of my warmup everyday. I would force myself as deep into the hole as I could get, and hold it for a few counts. Gradually, I got lower and lower. It was painful. Seriously, it was often the toughest part of the workout.

As things began to loosen up, I conquered that damn fitness bar. Then I moved on to an empty barbell. I found that the added weight helped force me down, and improved my flexability even more.

Keep at it, and be patient.
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