CrossFit Discussion Board  

Go Back   CrossFit Discussion Board > CrossFit Forum > Fitness
CrossFit Home Forum Site Rules CrossFit FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 05-09-2009, 07:39 AM   #1
Jordan Spritzer
Member Jordan Spritzer is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Johnstown  NY
Posts: 51
Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

I have a shoulder press of 180lbs. and a bench press of 315lbs. Unfortunately my max back squat is also 315lbs. I know this is disproportionate and I was wondering if there are any suggested exercises I should be doing in addition the the WOD to bring up my lower body strength other than the obvious .... squats. I am already doing extra oly lifting. Any suggestions?
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-09-2009, 08:06 AM   #2
Zach Gates
Member Zach Gates is offline
 
Zach Gates's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Johnstown  PA
Posts: 305
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

What's your squat style? Do you do it beltless? How do you bench?

Some people are built to bench, short arms and a broad rib cage means a slightly short ROM and your shoulder press to bench ratio is similar to mine making me think that's the case. Meanwhile the squat moves through a lot more space.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-09-2009, 08:48 AM   #3
Thomas Green
Member Thomas Green is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: New York  NY
Posts: 1,156
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

How old are you/how long have you been benching and squatting for? In high school, pretty much all we used to do was bench, so I was able to get pretty close to 300. Meanwhile, I didn't even learn to squat properly until I got to college, so that lagged behind for the longest time. This tends to be the case for everyone I know, so if it is, don't worry. To get better at the squat, you have to do one thing: squat. A lot. For a while, I was doing it 3x a week, with 2 heavy days and 1 light day. Every time I'd hit a plateau, I'd switch over to box squats for a month. But yeah, bottom line is you've just gotta squat all the time. I'd suggest trying something like CF Football(which includes heavy squats in the warmup all the time), CFSB, Starting Strength/Stronglifts, or CF with additional squat work multiple times a week. It can be pretty mentally taxing, but I promise that if you squat 2-3 times a week, you'll be hitting over 400 in no time.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-09-2009, 09:04 AM   #4
Jamie Crichton
Member Jamie Crichton is offline
 
Jamie Crichton's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Bristol  UK
Posts: 326
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

A few things spring to mind: firstly, your squat itself and secondly, assistance work.

With your squat itself, there may be a few things you could do to help you lift more. Get as tight as possible for each lift. Make sure your weight is on your heels. Drive through your heels and push the knees out to stand up. When you put the bar on your shoulders, get your upper body as tight as possible. Get your hands in as close as comfortable to your shoulders and pull it into your traps.

Assistance work that should help your squat: Good mornings, Deadlifts, Front squat, Lunges, Split Squats, Glute ham raises,
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 01:42 AM   #5
Harley Jennings
Member Harley Jennings is offline
 
Harley Jennings's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Ft Hood  TX
Posts: 749
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

Jordan,

I was, and with squats, still am in the same boat as you. I have no issues with the upperbody with a 200lbs shoulder press, 340lbs bench press. My deadlift and squat sucked due to form issues, and mental issues. I did what the guys suggested above, worked them often, bought the books by Ripp, stayed motivated. It works. My deadlift is finally above 405lbs, and my squat is getting there.

Zach is right on as well. I have short arms, barrel chested, big shoulders. Kind of like a T-rex!
__________________
M/27/5'10''/200lbs/13%BF BS 365#/ SP 205#/ DL 425#/ BP 345#/ PC 235#/ FS 265#/ CJ 225#/ THR 225#/ Liz 6:11/ Murph 39:00My Log
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-10-2009, 08:00 PM   #6
Daniel Higgins
Member Daniel Higgins is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Arlington  MA
Posts: 242
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

I'm guessing you did some sort of routine/program prior that involved mostly upper body work? I've seen a few guys in the gym with 315+ benches but struggle with squatting 225x5. I think its simply programming.

My squat and dead used to suck, and the best thing to do besides actually squatting is have someone check your form. When people first start squatting, its usually ugly/painful to watch. Happens to everyone. But I think the potential is there.

If you're doing strictly CF WOD's, definitely throw in a squat day and a deadlift or accessory day. If you're upper-bodybuilding, then stop, unless thats what you really want to do. Check out starting strength or Wendler's 5/3/1 for the building strength and "mastering" the compounds lifts - all 4 plus oly and variations.

I say "master" because it takes years of practice and scrutiny to have an even close to ideal squat or deadlift. But over a few months your progress will be great, I assure you.
__________________
Trying to get stronger...if I post inaccurate information, please correct me for the benefit of others and myself.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2009, 03:56 AM   #7
Jordan Spritzer
Member Jordan Spritzer is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Johnstown  NY
Posts: 51
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

Thanks for all the input. Some info about me: I'm 33 and have been into weight training (read, bodybuilding) on and off since I was about 14. I've always done more upper body work than lower body and I guess I'm now suffering the effects. My deadlift is respectable at 365lbs. so I don't think it's a problem with hip strength. I've videoed myself several times and my form is pretty solid. I just seem to have weak quads. Chicken legs if you will? I think I'll check out crossfit football as was suggested. Thanks to everyone.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-11-2009, 12:23 PM   #8
Zach Gates
Member Zach Gates is offline
 
Zach Gates's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Johnstown  PA
Posts: 305
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harley Jennings View Post
Zach is right on as well. I have short arms, barrel chested, big shoulders. Kind of like a T-rex!
There you go. A guy I lift with a state record holder in the raw bench press with somewhere in the area of 500 pounds. He's about 5'10, competes as a 275, has these little short t-rex arms. Not weak in the legs at all, but absolutely out-benches his squat and pull.

My bench is lower than my lower-body lifts, but not by a whole lot and if I scrap my belt it turns even worse. Some people just are built that way. Some people also out-squat their deadlift, some have a deadlift twice as high as their squat. It's all very personal, suggesting there's a "magic ratio" for everyone is ridiculous.
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-2009, 10:14 AM   #9
Jacob Cloud
Member Jacob Cloud is offline
 
Jacob Cloud's Avatar
 
Profile:
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Austin  TX
Posts: 1,479
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jordan Spritzer View Post
I have a shoulder press of 180lbs. and a bench press of 315lbs. Unfortunately my max back squat is also 315lbs. I know this is disproportionate and I was wondering if there are any suggested exercises I should be doing in addition the the WOD to bring up my lower body strength other than the obvious .... squats. I am already doing extra oly lifting. Any suggestions?

Squat 2-3x/wk, heavy, and intensely. Squatting heavy just requires practice and the right attitude, nothing magic there. Also, your press/bench ratio is a bit off from what Rip suggests. You're at 57%, Rip suggests about 65% for shoulder health...I'd start pressing twice a week and kick the bench down to once a week, sort of a "maintenance" mode. Get that press to 200 and you'll be money. Either way, you're strong, so good for you.

Edit: As some background, I'm in the opposite situation - decent lower body, so sad upper. I played around with squatting/DLing less often and my upper body didn't magically get stronger, go figure. Keep working everything, just really focus mentally on your weak spots.
__________________
My Workout Log (WFS)
  Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-2009, 06:26 PM   #10
Scott Erb
Member Scott Erb is offline
 
Profile:
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Burke  VA
Posts: 122
Re: Upper vs. Lower Body Strength

I'm like Jacob on this one. Better lower body than upper. Squat 300x5, DL 405, press 155. Former swimmer with broad shoulders and LONG arms. Good for DL, not so good for bench and press. Not sure what my max bench is - all I know is that during Lynn a couple months back I got 25 reps at 190. I also dip +155. Seems like my press is weak relative to the bench and dips. I'm adding in a 5x5 press plus negatives once a week...
__________________
ScottE - m/38/188/5'10" Burke, VA
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Upper body WODS Carlos Perez Injuries 5 04-11-2008 01:22 PM
DOMS: Upper vs. Lower body Tom Woodward Health and Medical Issues 3 01-15-2008 08:31 PM
Upper Body Blackbox Kevin McGuinness Fitness 6 07-09-2007 10:22 PM
WOD 3/11 Upper Body Strength Index Jon Pappas Workout of the Day 14 04-02-2003 06:06 PM
Upper/ Lower Body Jeff Reiser Workout of the Day 2 01-29-2003 08:19 PM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:25 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
CrossFit is a registered trademark of CrossFit Inc.