Today’s training question

Hey everyone. I’ve had a couple of  interesting questions today about training after I put up a couple of videos  (which you can watch by clicking on the training videos above). I wanted to share them and my answers with you. Let me know what you think and if you have any similar questions.

2 Questions for you:

1) What is the benefit of doing a Box squat vs a Back or Front Squat
2) Why do you lift heavy with no shoes?

Well, it depends entirely on the individual and their desired outcome.
However to give you a quick idea with the box squat question:
– For most people it will be designed to have a slight pause at the box, this will break up the eccentric/concentric chain of movement (down/up) requiring the lifter to ‘start again’ at the bottom. This is a much heavier and harder lift than a normal back or front squat for this very reason. It will require much more strength through the support structures of the torso to hold neutral spine, which is usually the first breaking point for a lot of people when they start getting towards failure on the final reps of a set. Or for a lot of people even just getting into or holding neutral spine is tough, let alone under load. Because of that the box squat (in conjunction with other exercises to strengthen this area)  is a great way to increase that strength and promote power through those sticking points. Back and front squats have their place for other reasons, normal back squats being more a combo of hip and knee (glut, hammy and quad) while front squats more knee based, so loading the quads.
As for the no shoes:
– I personally do this as I do not have proper weight lifting shoes, which have a solid, usually wooden, sole, which allows for greater proprioception with the ground, where you are pushing and producing force. Using normal ‘sneakers’ has a cushioned sole which decreases your force production. To exaggerate this, imagine squatting heavy standing on a couch cushion… It would be hard to get a decent weight up wouldn’t it? I use no shoes as a cheap and easy alternative to allow me to create good ground force.
That answer it??

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