Part 2: The low bar squat is NOT just for powerlifters

Part 2: The low bar squat is NOT just for powerlifters


The low bar squat doesn’t “carry over” to the snatch and the clean and jerk. Or so its stated by many fitness enthusiasts. What does this even mean!?

To be competitive we need to get stronger right? An occasional PR in a strength movement isn’t enough. I’m talking about a plan that allows you to make improvements in the strength movements OFTEN. But why do olympic lifters back squat at all if it’s not a contested lift. They squat to get STRONG. A strong squat equals a strong snatch and clean and jerk.

No. It’s not a perfectly linear relationship. But it almost always means that if your squat and pull are getting stronger, so will your olympic lifts.



But why?

Why does building up your squat help your weightlifting total, if the squat is not “specific” to the snatch. In a squat you take the barbell of a rack and put it in your back. I don’t think you are ever in this position during an oly lift. The important concept here is that strength is a GENERAL ADAPTATION that WILL in fact carry over to a more specific task.

So, to get stronger, doing a non-specific movement in order to acquire GENERAL STRENGTH, it makes more sense to use the non-specific movement that allows YOU to lift the most amount of weight. This is why I used the word “theoretically” in the last post. You should use the technique that allows you to move the most weight.

Oh okay, you think that the low bar squat will “create the bad habit” of leaning over too much, which can potentially ruin a clean. If you are regularly performing the snatch and clean and jerk, and front squatting almost every day, as any good olympic weightlifter must, I can almost guarantee that you won’t just suddenly forget how to do a clean by performing a low bar squat.

Whats my take in all of this? Utilize a program that allows you to hit regular  PRs in the strength movements, and pick a squat technique that allows YOU to lift the most weight, or if you’re feeling adventurous combine both.

By: Stefanie Cohen