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JustCallMeAmber

JustCallMeAmber squat, etc form check

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As part of my challenge, I'm starting to video my lifts. I was hoping y'all wouldn't mind giving some input? I will be adding my other lifts as I go, but I tend to be most cautious around squats so I'm starting there.

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Hopefully this won't look too confusing.

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^^updated squats

Deadlifts:

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Also pulled a single to see if form changed too much:

 

It would be helpful if you could close spoilers while editing a message lol

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^^Updated deadlift

 

ADDED floor press

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vvvv

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^^^^Revised floor press vid

 

 

ADDED OHP:

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It's less the bar coming forward and more your chest collapsing. It's hard to tell in the video, but it looks like you've got a high bar position, so you either need to work on keeping your chest up, or switch to low bar and embrace the human taco position.

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Yeah, it's high bar. Seems more comfortable to me, though that may be partly because it's what I've done the most of.

Not that I don't aspire to be this guy:

taco-man.jpg

 

I suppose I could replace my "OMG DON'T DIE" cue with "chest up" and see what happens.

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Good on your for posting!!! All in all it seems like it's going up pretty easily, but that bend forward at the bottom can be coming from a few places. I would look at core first. It tends to collapse after the stretch reflex takes over at the bottom of a squat. If you can imagine coming out of the hole by pushing the weight up with your core... some people think of it as pushing back against the bar... this would keep your chest up. It also looks like your quads aren't loading as much as the glutes and hams on the way back up as well, which would push the COG forward a little. It's always tough to tell with limited site on a video, but FWIW I thought it looked pretty easy! What %ish of max is this?

 

4 hours ago, Grumble said:

embrace the human taco position.

 

giphy.gif

 

 

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2 hours ago, RedStone said:

Good on your for posting!!! All in all it seems like it's going up pretty easily, but that bend forward at the bottom can be coming from a few places. I would look at core first. It tends to collapse after the stretch reflex takes over at the bottom of a squat. If you can imagine coming out of the hole by pushing the weight up with your core... some people think of it as pushing back against the bar... this would keep your chest up. It also looks like your quads aren't loading as much as the glutes and hams on the way back up as well, which would push the COG forward a little. It's always tough to tell with limited site on a video, but FWIW I thought it looked pretty easy! What %ish of max is this?

 

Thanks!  I'm glad I didn't talk myself out of it lol. :)

Core hasn't exactly been my strong suit, so I can work on that. I'll play with my stance some to see if I can get more quad engagement. Hopefully just being more mindful of bracing will help too, along with different cues.

It is just under 90% of my current 1RM. (I could probably go up but I want get things dialed in better form-wise before maxing out again.)  

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There are two things I've been doing to try building up core strength in the squat. One is breathing paused squats. I've been doing that as the last rep of each warm up set. I pause at the bottom, keep braced but let myself breath several controlled breathes before going back up. The other thing is accessory squats with about a 2 second pause after coming about an inch out of the hole.

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There are two things I've been doing to try building up core strength in the squat. One is breathing paused squats. I've been doing that as the last rep of each warm up set. I pause at the bottom, keep braced but let myself breath several controlled breathes before going back up. The other thing is accessory squats with about a 2 second pause after coming about an inch out of the hole.

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Cool, I will add those into my rotation. Should work well with my schedule too. Thanks!

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Red's right - it does look easy! and form isn't really bad either to my novice eyes. well done!

 

for me, my taco position comes from my ankles and foot position. see if you can stay more "upright" with a wider stance or plates under your heels. these are not a fix, but a way to see if your ankle mobility might be the culprit. i only squat with a wide stance now and i'm okay with that. squat shoes would likely help me but i've been real stubborn about not getting them...

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On 1/8/2018 at 11:40 AM, CourtnieMarie said:

Red's right - it does look easy! and form isn't really bad either to my novice eyes. well done!

 

for me, my taco position comes from my ankles and foot position. see if you can stay more "upright" with a wider stance or plates under your heels. these are not a fix, but a way to see if your ankle mobility might be the culprit. i only squat with a wide stance now and i'm okay with that. squat shoes would likely help me but i've been real stubborn about not getting them...

Oops, I missed this yesterday. Thank you! :)They felt pretty solid in terms of lower body, it was the rest of me that didn't get the memo lol.

 

I will give that a shot! I tend to do a bit wider stance when I'm doing third world squat / stretching, but my usual squat position is slightly duck footed / roughly shoulder distance apart, so will see how it goes.

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Watch that rounding. Especially on the heavy singles. You start out perfect, but instead of taking the tension out of the bar first, you go straight into the lift.  I think that is what's causing your back to round. Only other small notes are don't shrug at the top of the lift and keep the bar against your legs. (I think, it's always hard to tell, but it looks like your swinging out and in on the first rep)

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Seconding Grumble. To elaborate on the shrugging, it looks like you're trying to make sure your shoulders are back (which is good) but there's some accidental upward movement. Bar definitely looks like it's a bit far from your shins.
Lest this sound overly negative, I think all you need is a few minor adjustments to fix these; nothing made me grimace in fear for your spine or anything like that.

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5 hours ago, Grumble said:

Watch that rounding. Especially on the heavy singles. You start out perfect, but instead of taking the tension out of the bar first, you go straight into the lift.  I think that is what's causing your back to round. Only other small notes are don't shrug at the top of the lift and keep the bar against your legs. (I think, it's always hard to tell, but it looks like your swinging out and in on the first rep)

 

2 hours ago, calanthrophy said:

Seconding Grumble. To elaborate on the shrugging, it looks like you're trying to make sure your shoulders are back (which is good) but there's some accidental upward movement. Bar definitely looks like it's a bit far from your shins.
Lest this sound overly negative, I think all you need is a few minor adjustments to fix these; nothing made me grimace in fear for your spine or anything like that.

Okie doke.  So, 1) don't jerk the bar off the floor. 2) Don't overexaggerate pulling my shoulders back, and NOT up. 3) Make sure I'm in contact with the bar at all times once I'm in position. 

 

I think I can handle that. Will report back. Thanks guys! I am rather attached to my spine and should like to keep it from snapping like a twig lol

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so i noted the slight rounding happening and then thought maybe your back is just shaped differently? then i went down a google rabbit hole and diagnosed myself with lordosis.

lordosis-of-the-lumbar-spine.jpg

 

super helpful, i know.

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On 1/12/2018 at 1:24 PM, CourtnieMarie said:

so i noted the slight rounding happening and then thought maybe your back is just shaped differently? then i went down a google rabbit hole and diagnosed myself with lordosis.

lordosis-of-the-lumbar-spine.jpg

 

super helpful, i know.

GoogleMD: your first resource for diagnosing diseases you did not know you had, and had previously never heard of. :lol:

 

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Yay for form checks! Hope your challenge is going well :)

 

I also struggle with back rounding, and have read maaaaany different possibly explanations, so take what I say with a grain of salt ;). To my (also novice) eyes, the rounding looks like it's mostly coming from your upper back, and then bleeding into mid-back. Upper back rounding is less dangerous than lower back rounding (and can help some people lift more), but as others have said, a straight back is preferable at this stage :). I'm wondering if keeping your lats tight and braced, especially as you come off the floor, might help prevent that rounding? You brace them before you touch the bar, but then have to lose some of that tightness as you round over to grab the bar. "Protect your armpits" is a good cue (i.e., pretend someone wants to tickle your armpits!). I've also found RDLs to be good for training back tightness.

 

The only other thing I'd add to what's been said is that it's better to breath out at the bottom of the lift, once you've returned the weight to the floor, rather than at the top. That way you remain braced at a potentially vulnerable position, and also don't have to regain tightness before lowering the weight.

 

Overall, though, your lifts are looking good, and I can tell you're paying a lot of attention to bracing and set-up. Keep it up!

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7 hours ago, Alanna said:

Yay for form checks! Hope your challenge is going well :)

 

I also struggle with back rounding, and have read maaaaany different possibly explanations, so take what I say with a grain of salt ;). To my (also novice) eyes, the rounding looks like it's mostly coming from your upper back, and then bleeding into mid-back. Upper back rounding is less dangerous than lower back rounding (and can help some people lift more), but as others have said, a straight back is preferable at this stage :). I'm wondering if keeping your lats tight and braced, especially as you come off the floor, might help prevent that rounding? You brace them before you touch the bar, but then have to lose some of that tightness as you round over to grab the bar. "Protect your armpits" is a good cue (i.e., pretend someone wants to tickle your armpits!). I've also found RDLs to be good for training back tightness.

 

The only other thing I'd add to what's been said is that it's better to breath out at the bottom of the lift, once you've returned the weight to the floor, rather than at the top. That way you remain braced at a potentially vulnerable position, and also don't have to regain tightness before lowering the weight.

 

Overall, though, your lifts are looking good, and I can tell you're paying a lot of attention to bracing and set-up. Keep it up!

Oh hai! So far, so good :D

I will add "Protect your armpits" cue; it's kind of a silly phrase so I think I can remember it lol. Not breathing out at the top of the rep might take me a bit to get the hang of, but you make good points as to why it is important. No war cry at the top of the rep, I suppose! ;)

Thank you! :)

 

 

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On 1/12/2018 at 1:24 PM, CourtnieMarie said:

so i noted the slight rounding happening and then thought maybe your back is just shaped differently? then i went down a google rabbit hole and diagnosed myself with lordosis.

lordosis-of-the-lumbar-spine.jpg

 

super helpful, i know.

 

Actually, it's pretty spot on! Except they're not diseases necessarily, just postural imbalances or exaggerations that most people have (with a few exceptions, like scoliosis, or when a disease causes exaggerations). I see extreme kyphosis the most, especially with people who work at a desk (ummm, everyone?) but conditioning and working out strength imbalances can work most of it out. (Sometimes it can be from an acute injury, I had some baaaad lordosis last year after I pulled my psoas.) More than anything else, holding yourself in the correct position (easier said than done), will take care of a lot of it.

 

Anyways, sorry for the slight side track... possibly unrelated but possibly not... but most people do have postural imbalances and it's not a bad idea to do an assessment and work on strengthening the weak areas and relaxing the tight, over worked ones :D Good posture helps erything yo

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Thanks for sharing that info! :) It was really interesting and I definitely can and should work more on my posture. I do ok when I'm thinking about it, but most of the time I just am not aware of it.

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I love the setup, you have obvious cues and everything that you seem to follow without much thought.

Otherwise, floor presses are hard to critique unless you're super duper bad form, which you are not. No access to a bench I presume?

 

 

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I love the setup, you have obvious cues and everything that you seem to follow without much thought.
Otherwise, floor presses are hard to critique unless you're super duper bad form, which you are not. No access to a bench I presume?
 
 
Well, I am glad it isn't super duper bad form lol. I will keep playing with my grip width to see if I can find anything that feels better/ more stable.

I have about 85% of a bench. The problem is that the missing 15% is the hardware to hold it together and the part that actually holds the bar. I think I could make it work with the squat rack, provided it isn't too wide. But it isn't really designed to be portable, so.. yeah, it will be interesting to see if I can manage to make it functional.

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I feel like your elbows are flared out too much with your press. That might also be why your wrists looked like they were bent too much inward in what looked like an uncomfortable angle.

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2 hours ago, Orion Antares said:

I feel like your elbows are flared out too much with your press. That might also be why your wrists looked like they were bent too much inward in what looked like an uncomfortable angle.

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i noticed the wrists as well.

 

work towards keeping them straight :)  "When you hold the bar, it should be in the heel of the palm (the same spot in your hands as for the overhead press.) Your wrists will not be extended, and your forearms are under your wrists, forming a solid line of support. "

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This is actually a legitimate technique for achieving a wider grip width while still keeping your fingers over the rings in the knurling. But I don't recommend it.

 

I didn't look at your floor presses initially because I don't do them, and thus can't advise you on how to do them better. 

 

But, looking at it, I'm wondering, how much lat engagement are you getting as you bring the bar down? That might explain your flared elbows (which doesn't help for any shoulder issues you're having) and your general feeling of instability.

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