Are Barbell Squats Fake?

In Leg Training, Progressive Calisthenics, Uncategorizedby Matt

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I spent nearly 15 years living under a barbell to make my legs stronger. I subscribed to the idea that that barbell back squat was the undisputed king of leg training.

When I shifted over to body weight training I prayed to the gods of leg strength that I wouldn’t lose too much size and power in my lower body. To my pleasant surprise, my legs were the muscle group that improved the most due to my body weight training. It was more than my back and biceps improved with pull ups. It was more than my triceps and chest blew up from dips and push ups. My leg strength just seemed to sprout like a weed and my skiing, biking and marital arts improved substantially as a result.

After 6 years of body weight squats my legs keep getting stronger and healthier. I look back on my weight lifting days and have to admit that some of the notions I had about leg training were more myth than truth.

In this week’s podcast I go into some of these insights such as:

– Why the heavy barbell back squat is actually a fairly artificial exercise.

– Why some of the classic rules of squatting like keeping your back strait and “sitting back” are best to be broken when it comes to body weight squats.

– Why the Barbell squat leaves pockets of deconditioning and weakness no matter how heavy you lift.

– Some of the strength and functional training advantages body weight squats have over weighted squats.

Check ’em out and let me know what you think below!