Front Squat: Total Body Improvement is yours with the Front Squat Barbell Press
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Don’t get me wrong. Having a nice looking physique can be great and it’s a good goal to have for anyone starting out but let me ask you a question. What’s the point of having a body to show if it can’t go? Fitness and training is about more than appearance. Function and performance are important too.
By Roger Lockridge
Whether you’re training for a sport, physique competition, or for overall health and fitness, everyone can benefit from this movement and the sooner you add it to your program the better.
The Front Squat Barbell Press
Yep, this exercise is a combination of two powerful movements, the front squat and the standing barbell press. The front squat is awesome for your entire lower body, especially the quads. The standing barbell press is a great choice for the shoulders and triceps. Both of them involve your core working overtime to remain stable throughout. This movement will help you increase power, improve muscularity, and help with conditioning since it’s a total body effort. Football players like linemen can use this exercise for explosion on the line of scrimmage. Strongman athletes can use this lift as an assistant exercise. Other athletes are sure to yield benefits from adding this to their programs.
How to Do it
Stand inside a squat rack with a barbell at a height that you’re comfortable unracking from for a front squat. Generally this is around shoulder height.
Take the bar with an overhand grip and unrack it. Your hands should be around shoulder width apart. Once you’re comfortable standing with the weight, raise your upper arms until they’re parallel with the floor. If you feel you need to, allow the bar to roll back onto your fingers. This will result in your wrists rolling back as well so be careful not to use weight you can’t handle.
Stand with feet shoulder width apart with toes pointed straight or slightly outward.
While keeping your arms parallel with the floor, bend at the hips and push your butt back. Don’t allow your back to round out. Lower yourself down with the weight in this position until your thighs are at least parallel with the floor. Once you’re in “the hole”, count to one.
Push through your feet to return to a standing position. Once you’ve done this, take a solid grip of the barbell. Using as much force as possible in your shoulders, press the barbell overhead as high as you can. You should feel the triceps pushing at the top. Don’t lockout the weight. This will help you keep tension on the muscles and off the joints. Lower the bar back down to the starting position. This is one rep. Repeat for the desired number of reps.
If you have back and/or knee issues, make sure you wear the appropriate accessories like a weightlifting belt and knee sleeves.
Take a deep breath in when you go down with the weight. Let that air out as you begin the press. Don’t hold your breath for too long.
Make sure you warm up with several sets of lighter weight before attempting any heavy loads with this exercise. Once you feel 100% comfortable with form, add plates to the bar.