Barbell Front Squats Vs Barbell Back Squats

The Changing Scene of Legs Workouts

If you want muscular and strong legs, there is no doubt that back squats are the best solution. But what squat variation should you perform? This is what we are going to answer in this article. Should you do overhead squats, pistols squats? So let us read about Barbell Front Squats Vs Barbell Back Squats.

Recently the popularity of alternative leg exercises has skyrocketed. From goblet squats to split squats, people have realised that there are other squatting variations. Of course, the most popular of which is the compound movement exercise known as the back squat. If you want to include it into your legs workouts, you should know what you are getting yourself into.

Squats should be part of the program of every trainer who wants to maximise the leg muscles. There is another squat variation that we will look at is the front squat, it is rarely performed in the gym but nevertheless, it is also great for the development of impressive legs.

Front Squat vs Back Squat

The Front Squat versus The Back Squat, which one should you choose? These two exercises may seem similar, but in fact, they are vastly different exercises. Both exercises have movement patterns that may seem similar but in reality, have vastly different mobility requirements.

The Front Squat

The last variation of squat is the front squat. In this case, the lever is placed on the front shoulders, which means that the torso must remain in a fully upright position in order to keep the lever in the correct position. This type of squat is performed almost entirely with the strength of the quadriceps.

The front squat is uncomfortable for many trainees to perform. Mainly because they cannot position the bar correctly on their shoulders. In addition, the front squat requires a lot of wrist mobility. For this reason, it is good to start with a lightweight that you are able to lift comfortably. Starting with a heavy weight can increase the risk of injury. Keep in mind that the back squat’s strength gains don’t really transition to the front squat. The limiting factor being that you need to learn a whole new movement pattern.

While it is the less popular variation of the exercise. The front squat puts less pressure on your spine and isolates the quadriceps. You may also have heard this way of doing squats works better on the glutes.

The Front Squat
The Front Squat

How to Perform a Front Squat

Make sure to warm up your knees, ankles, hips, shoulders, elbows and wrists. Then position the bar on the squat rack. Stand in the center of the bar and position it onto your shoulders. Then wrap your arms around the bar, placing your legs firmly on the ground. Breath in and slowly lifts up the bar.

Adjust your feet: in this case, the heels should be slightly wider than the shoulder-width with the toes pointing outwards. Exhale, then take a  deep breath and tighten your abdominals. Tighten the shoulder blades, thus stabilising the bar’s position on your shoulders. Start squatting by moving your pelvis backwards before bending your knees. Lower vertically until the pelvis passes below the knees. Then start standing upright until you reach the starting position. Repeat.

The Back Squat

We all know that the back squat is the classic lower body compound exercise. This is the most common squat variation you will see in the gym. It is performed with a barbell placed on the trapeze. It is perfect for the development of the quadriceps, glutes and calves, as well as for overall muscle strength. The back squat has two popular variations. Many people do not realise that these variations are vastly different:

The Back Squat
The Back Squat

High Bar Back Squat

The most often performed variation of the back squat. Here is how it should be performed: Start with your legs shoulder-width apart, and feet slightly turned to the side. You should feel the weight coming onto your heels. Then with your chest forward and grip slightly wider than the width of your shoulders, looking ahead, squat down until your knees bent at an angle of 90 degrees or more. Then stand upwards in a controlled manner.

Low Bar Back Squat

This variation of the back squat has a much more challenging technique. It is used mainly by powerlifters. You should be extra careful when attempting this variation. If you are bold enough, here is how you do it:

The bar should sit on the hind shoulders and the middle of the back. Due to the position of the bar, you must tilt your torso forward so that the middle of the steps is in line with the lever. Unlike the high bar back squats, the calves play a big role in the movement. When descending, great tension is created in the calves. At the lowest point of the movement, you might feel your calves pushing you upwards, due to tension created in them. The knees should remain high, so you can remain balanced when descending (this will compensate for the position of the torso). The low back bar squat mainly puts tension on quad and glute muscles.

Which One Should You Choose?

It is clear that both of these exercises have their uses. Here is what we can recommend. If you are looking to gain size and strength, the back squat is for you. With the traditional back squats, you should focus on lifting heavy weights, as this variation will allow you to lift a lot more weight. But the front squat variation has its uses as well.

The front squat is an excellent addition to your leg workout, you can even do it right after the back squat. These exercises can help you work on your core, hamstrings and calves. The benefits of the front squads are numerous, it also will decrease the pressure put on your lumbar spine.






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Barbell Front Squats Vs Barbell Back Squats

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