Front Squat

Front Squat: Teach in 1 minute

Objective:
*teaching* a movement is a brief explanation of what the client is about to learn for the first time in On Ramp, or review in a class setting. It’s only 1 minute to prevent you from talking too much, keeping the clients engaged, and giving them just enough to safely begin moving.

For front squat there are TWO skills: 1) getting the bar out of the rack  & 2)performing the front squat

Getting the bar out of the rack

  • Stance, Grip, & starting position: Getting the bar out of the rack

1) Grip First: a full grip or fingertips on the bar approximately 1/2-1 thumb from inside smooth mark.
2) Stance: feet are under the bar (behind the bar is very common, but not supportive)
3) Starting position: pelvic stability, strong core, & elbows engaged for bar to be in line of balance

  • Stance, Grip, & starting position: Getting ready to front squat

1) Grip First: shouldn’t have changed between the rack and the bar
2) Stance: feet are shoulder width, encourage them to not look down, but to feel it
3) Starting position: pelvic stability, suck in the core, & bar pushed into collar bone w/ elbows up

  • ~ points of movement mechanics performance: 

1) hips initiate the movement – all air squat fundamentals should be consistent including heels flat.
2) torso is upright: elbows/chest dropping or bar drifting away from neck
3) breathing: breath in before the rep, breath out 3/4 the way out of it.

 

Getting the bar out of the rack

The client should pass through with pvc pipe to determine width.

1) Grip First:the grip may or may not be found here, depending on the width.
2) Stance: feet are under the bar (behind the bar is very common, but not supportive)
3) Starting position: pelvic stability, strong core, & elbows engaged for bar to be in line of balance

Getting ready to Overhead squat

1) Grip First: Widen the grip – double check for everyone – the bigger the guy, the tighter the shoulders, the wider the grip
2) Stance: feet are shoulder width, encourage them to not look down, but to feel it
3) Starting position: pelvic stability, suck in the core, & bar pushed into collar bone w/ elbows up

3-5 movement mechanics

1) clients will press or push press the bar.
2) actively reach with the shoulders
3)hips initiate the movement – all air squat fundamentals should be consistent including heels flat.
4) torso is upright: elbows/chest dropping or bar drifting away from neck
5) breathing: breath in before the rep, breath out 3/4 the way out of it.

Those who struggle with range in shoulders or ships should not be forced.

Front Squat: Coaching in 5 min

*Coaching* a movement is a thorough examination of class, moving on your cues while simultaneously looking for faults and improving their positions. The clients will feel safer having participated in guided review, but you will learn the strengths and weaknesses to provide better coaching tips for individuals.

  • Fluency & eye contact: your confidence determines the clients trust with you. If they don’t trust you, they don’t feel safe. 
  • Communication: the clients need to know what to do and when to do it with a purpose.
  • TRIAGE: how to organize your thoughts when educating a whole-group environment

 

Are they doing the right movement

For example, someone will bring the bar to the back rack when walking out of the cage for overhead squat. This is incorrect movement all together. The rest of the class has been asked to walk out of rack station, so you need to swoop in quickly, ask the client to re-rack the bar, and you show the safe way to get the bar out of the rack.

Now the whole class is ready for skills.

Macro cue & Micro Fix

A common fault with approaching the bar at the rack station is a lazy core and unstable spine when unracking.

emphasize pelvic stability and strong core when getting the bar out of the rack and initiate cuing to check who is and who isn’t doing it.

“Bring your grip about a thumb from the smooth mark.” you’re looking for too close and too wide grip around the room.

“Walk your feet under the bar, tuck your hips, tighten your butt and stand.”

There are times where I will remember someone i need to talk to later, during warm up sets about the pelvic tilt – maybe not right now.

“When I say squat, hold it at the bottom until I say stand.”

“Ready and squat”: remember, the first rep is like a warm up – is everyone doing the right movement and on your cue?! If not, fix it!

This time, “eyes ahead, don’t look down!” This improves balance and prevents elbows from dropping. “ready and squat, hold” look for eyes ahead “and stand.”

This time “as you go down, force your elbows up!” “ready and squat” “hold” “and stand”

***How to know what to cue: there’s 2 options. One, start with the mechanics – what is supposed to happen first? Look for THAT only. You may notice something different, and that’s ok. Cue the class something you saw someone do. If that *one person* didn’t fix it, swoop into micromanage that person then head back to a macro view of class.

Adhering to sports standards

It’s a delicate matter to discuss whether or not a lift was successful. The bottom line – go back to our values: quality.

Do you want someone to perform percentages of a bad rep?

Is that person the role model for future clients?

You have the final say for the safety of the client and upholding the legacy of our core values.

Warm ups and skill work should be taken seriously by the coach. It’s a time for you to learn about your clients, how they’re feeling, and what they are capable of.

Sometimes you’ll notice a client cringe when performing a movement – they didn’t tell you before class that they are feeling bad pain. It is certainly their responsibility but we can go the extra mile by *noticing* them. Perhaps they didn’t want to be a burden, perhaps their ego didn’t want to scale down.

Scaling is essential for long-term success. When in doubt, always scale.

If a client is capable of squatting full range in skills, then they should be kept to the standards.

I reference basketball a lot. Just because you spent the energy to run the ball down the court, it doesn’t mean you get a point in the basket for trying. CrossFit is measured by range of motion, safe technique, and performance.

Measurable Accuracy is a crucial part of the CrossFit sport experience.

scaling/modifying

Mobility:
1)banded front rack stretch
2)calf stretches
3)ankle flossing