What Are Front Squats?

The front squat is a type of lower-body exercise that will help you to strengthen your legs and hips. Besides targeting your quadriceps, which are also known as the thigh muscles, this exercise targets your glutes, which are also known as the butt muscles.

It is an effective exercise you should be incorporating into your workouts at home or in the gym. 

A Front Squat is the same as a Back Squat, however, when you perform a Front Squat, the barbell will be placed across the front side of your shoulders, as opposed to your upper back.

In addition to shifting the center of mass forward, this allows for a straighter stance, thus allowing the lifter to attain a more spine-friendly posture. Essentially the work of your glutes is transferred to the quadriceps, making this exercise one of the best for building quad strength and size.

This guide will explain how to do this exercise correctly and any information you need to know in order to do it safely and prevent injury.

The Benefits

What Are Front Squats

The squat is a functional exercise that is practiced by nearly everyone in their daily lives. It is very important that you practice good technique and the best place to do this is, of course, the gym.

 However, the lower body strength we are building when we squat can actually be improved during our daily activities without realizing it. The back squat is usually something that is included in a training routine of a lot of people over and over again.

On the other hand, front squats are essential exercises that can be beneficial in a number of ways than one. Check out this guide we made to know what front squats work in your body when you perform this fantastic exercise correctly. 

How To Front Squat

  • In order to begin, you will need to position the bar at armpit height in the squat rack. This is something that will really help support you in this exercise and should be in every gym. Workers should be on hand to help you identify what you are looking for.
  • The bar should be placed on the collarbones while standing towards the bar. Take a firm grip on the bar from underneath and point your elbows in the direction of your shoulders so that they align with each other. It is so important that you get this correct otherwise you will only hurt yourself. Seek assistance from a trainer if you need help.
  • Your initial preparation will require you to take a few steps back and brace your core while placing your feet slightly wider apart than hip-width apart. This involves screwing your feet into the ground, bending your hips, knees, and ankles, and squatting so that your thighs are below parallel. You will then notice you have done this correctly if you get in this position. 
  • Make sure your chest is raised and your spine is neutral, then get back up and come to a standing position again. When you have done this, you would have successfully completed a front squat!

Once you have done one of these front squats correctly you can push yourself to do more of these. It is a great exercise to bring into your workouts and be sure to take your time and do as many reps as you feel comfortable with. Be careful not to overdo it, as you will become injured.

Be sure to get someone to watch over you if this is your first time trying it as a trainer will be able to spot any common mistakes you may make.

Adaptations Of The Front Squat

Performing mobility exercises can improve your squat if your mobility is reduced in certain areas. You may have a limited range of motion in your wrists, elbows, upper back, hips and ankles when you front squat.

Practicing different variations of a particular exercise is one of the best ways to increase range of motion.

This is a list of variations of the front squat you can do:

  • Wall squats
  • Box squats
  • Gorilla squats
  • Wrist and elbow flexion and extension

The muscles used in front squats can be strengthened and addressed with accessory exercises. In addition to strengthening your muscles, these things will help you improve your front squat technique.

This is a list of what accessory exercises you can do: 

  • Weighted split squats
  • Front rack step ups
  • Leg extensions
  • Leg press

Mistakes to Avoid

What Are Front Squats Mistakes to Avoid

Although the front squat is one of the most effective exercises when it comes to strengthening your glutes and quadriceps, it is also one that is forgotten about at the same time. 

While there is no one way in which each of us moves when performing a front squat, there are some common mistakes worth looking at when performing one. 

  • The first common issue is the rounded upper back and this needs to be corrected. To do so, you must ensure that you have the ears aligned with your shoulders and that the shoulders are rotated externally. Failing to do this will strain your back and that can be a long-term problem.
  • The next is that the elbows are not high enough. You need to get the elbows in-line with the shoulders. Stop restricting yourself and get them in the position they need to be in. A trainer will help point this out if you are struggling to sort this issue.
  • There may be some of you who have an excessively bent or extended lower back. To prevent this, the spine should be neutral and the bum not excessively stuck out or tucked under the hips. Getting this right will really help you do the front squat correctly and safely.
  •  Last but not least, you may not be getting low enough. You should at least get your thighs parallel to the ground. If you can’t do this then you may as well not be squatting at all.

If you are reading this, you may think that these mistakes do not seem serious, but it is so important to avoid making these mistakes or at least correct where you are going wrong.

Summary

When you love exercising that much, there is no doubt that you would like to achieve a perfect front squat. With this guide, we have given you everything you need to know about the front squat and given you some pointers that will help you learn how to do it right and eliminate all those silly mistakes that cause injury.

In addition to improving your athletic performance, the front squat can also help you with the range of motion you need to move throughout the day. There is no better time to get to the squat rack and start your training program than now.

Kevin Harris
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