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Old 03-05-2007, 02:29 PM   #13
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RE width - absolutely, and if something i said was interpreted to mean the only difference between a PL and OL squat was the foot width, i was not clear. that is, however, one difference (by and large competitive PLers use wider foot placement than their OLer counterparts), the others pertaining more to bar placement, depth and the movement/position of the hips (i.e. PL squat involves more backward hip displacement and lower bar to pull in more of the posterior chain).

i agree that the low bar backsquat does mimic the hip/back positions of the OL pulls, and don't disagree that it's a potential variation to throw into the mix from time to time, but if the goal is improving the pull, i would more often opt for clean/snatch pulls or deadlifts, and if posterior chain focus is really sought after, i would lean (pun intended) more toward SLDL and RDLs.

so bottom line, the high bar, upright torso, quad-centric Oly squat i see as primarily intended for improving the squat segment of the clean (and the snatch to some extent), while pulls/deads address the pull more directly. again, though, variation from cycle to cycle always allows for that low bar squat to find a place from time to time, as well as things typically saved for PLing such as box squats (heresy!).

in my experience, the limiting factor of the clean for the majority of lifters is not the pull, but rising from the squat, so with that in mind, heavy front squatting seems to be the order. so i don't see an overwhelming need for performing low bar squats expressly to improve pulling mechanics/strength, although again, variety is needed time to time.

if a lifter's time and recovery ability dictate greater than usual limitations on exercises in a cycle, i will opt for high bar squatting always. if there is room for more variety, i'm not at all averse to throwing in a lower bar squat.

i'm curious to hear the remainder of your position on this though--that is, where in weightlifting programming you see the low bar squat's place.

by the way, read practical programming finally this weekend - excellent work as always.
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