📷 @bowlfit with Heather D’Errico
What’s the difference between a front squat and a back squat?
Here’s the scoop. Front squats are done with a bar resting on the fingertips and deltoids, essentially making a shelf with your shoulders. In order to maintain a squat in this position you have to keep your chest up and core engaged, if you lean forward the bar will roll right off and onto the floor.
Front squats will load your anterior chain much more- aka quads and “core”. Whereas back squats can be a bit more posterior chain dominant (hammies, glutes) Most people front squat significantly less weight due to the difficulty in keeping their chest up and core engaged. It can be a very humbling exercise!
Are front squats better than back squats? It really depends. Research in the journal of Strength and Conditioning has shown that the back squat placed significantly more compressive forces on the lumbar spine, and concluded that front squats may be the better choice for lifters with knee problems such as meniscus tears, as well as for long-term joint health. I generally recommend a mix of both in programs, unless an athlete has a restriction that limits them from one variation.
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