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Old 10-10-2009, 04:49 PM   #1
Thomas A. Holmes
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Contradictory teachings on the squat?

I just started doing Starting Strength and as Ive been reading up about it, ive noticed that it teaches the squat differently that a recent CF Journal video article does.

a few months ago, there was video of Kelly Starret teaching how to correctly teach the squat and avoid knee pain. he explains that when we squat, we need to have our shins verticle, otherwise we are putting a lot of pressure on the knee and patella. he says that if the knee is over or infront of the toe in the bottom of the squat, that over time, it will result in knee pain and injury. so keep the shin verticle and the knee over the ankle (a near impossibility for me unless i lean WAAAAAY forward).

but in Starting Strength its clear from the videos and even from the drawings they use to show proper squat form (with weight...) that the knee is in front of the toe. hes clear that we need to be keeping our hams and glutes engaged, but the knee is plainly way out infront.

is there some reason the "dont squat with you knee infront of the toe" rule doesnt apply to heavy squatting? this seems like a clear contradiction.
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Old 10-10-2009, 05:02 PM   #2
Brian Degenaro
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

Kelley is speaking about special populations, for example, those with RA, knee surgeries, and serious knee problems.
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Old 10-10-2009, 05:40 PM   #3
Thomas A. Holmes
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

well. i guess im an ******* for not paying attention to the details. it sounded like he taught all his clients that way, but i probably got that wrong. anyway, thanks man.
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Old 10-10-2009, 05:46 PM   #4
Brian Degenaro
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

Don't worry about it,I thought the same thing when I read that, but I remembered that Kelley is a PT and works with special populations. If I'm not mistaken last I viewed these Kelley mentioned he was talking about special populations.
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Old 10-11-2009, 08:22 AM   #5
David Meverden
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

Keep in mind, though, that it doesn't boil down to: Kelley Starret wants you to keep your knees back, and Rip doesn't give a crap about knee position.

Regardless of the type of squatting the knees should not be allowed to come excessively forward. Both those gentleman want the knees back, it's just that it's more of a priority for one coach than another due to above mentioned reasons (in fact one of the advantages of the Rip Advocated low-bar position is that you can get the knees back a few more inches and engage the posterior chain more at the bottom of the lift). A more veteran coach can chime in if necessary, but when talking to beginners some big things to emphasize are: Heels on ground, knees back, butt back.

See the drawing from SS below. It shows, among other things, the knee position being closer to the toes as the bar position moves back.

Now see the picture of the guy in green doing a hindu squat. You used the phrase: "knee is plainly way out infront." The hindu squat is shown to show a more proper definition of "Knees way out in front."
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Old 10-11-2009, 09:58 AM   #6
Thomas A. Holmes
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

well brought. makes perfect sense. that hindu squat looks painful. yikes.
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Old 10-11-2009, 12:52 PM   #7
Greg Privitera
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

Knees should come out in front of the toes in a proper, full depth squat. With weight on the heels and proper ankle and hip mobility, the hips will bear the load.
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Old 10-11-2009, 05:08 PM   #8
Blair Robert Lowe
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

It's relatively easy if you have been doing it since a child or 3rd world squatting for a long time. Only the "Sissy"-squat is harder.

If you haven't though, it sucks ballz.
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:17 AM   #9
Jamie J. Skibicki
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

I never liked the "knees over toes" analysis. WHat if you have exceptionally longer or short feet? WHat if your femurs or shin bones has weird proportions?

Don't worry about where the knees are in relation to the toes (although the knees must still track the toes). THe knees move in the first third of the squat of the squat while sitting back. Where ever they are at that position is where they should be.
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Old 10-12-2009, 09:58 AM   #10
Steven Low
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Re: Contradictory teachings on the squat?

Just "sit back" the weight over your heels and you should be fine. YOu should be able to lift your toes up off the ground during your squats.

This is what both Kelly/Rippetoe/etc. are aiming for, and which helps engage the posterior chain more.
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