These 20 Things Before Barbell Squatting Can Maximize Improving Your Leg Size and Strength

#13 – Stop trying to max out every week

Trying to hit a new squat max every week is not the best way to build squat strength. Far from it. You need to get your reps in. This will allow you to build a monster squat in the long run, and help you to improve form.

Focus on progressing in the 5-12 rep range, adding reps and weight as you can. This will push your squat max up and up while decreasing risk of injury. Save the heavy, low rep work after you have built a 400 pound squat.

#14 – Not all experienced lifters have great squat form

You might find this point hard to believe, but it’s true. This is especially true for experienced muscle builders. Do not assume that just because a lifter is squatting 400 pounds for reps on YouTube that they have a good grasp of squat form.

Point here is simple…do not try to emulated the squat form of others. Take time and learn squat form from the big names in the powerlifter community. These guys know squatting and will help you to get on track.

Just because an experienced lifter stresses squat form doesn’t automatically mean they understand proper squat form. I see dozens and dozens of big squatters on YouTube each year who don’t understand squatting 101. They have noticeable form issues, and could benefit from some instruction.

#15 – We all start weak – be patient

If you are feeling frustrated that your squats are weak, it’s time to take a look at the bigger picture and focus upon what is important – weekly improvement. We all start weak. Where you start doesn’t matter. Pushing for progress matters.

Leg muscle and squat strength takes time to build. Keep your focus on trying to improve each set by at least one rep per week. Over time this will get you to your goals. It works every time.

Don’t think you can force progress. You can’t. Let it come to you. Keep a pinpoint focus on trying to make small steps each week. Lifters who do this always succeed.

Barbell Squats

#16 – Think “stand up”; drive your shoulders into the bar

One of the best ways to improve your power out of the hole, and to help you remain more upright, is to try and drive your shoulders into the bar as you complete each rep. It always helps to think about “standing up.” These 2 mental cues should be practiced on every rep until they become second nature.

A lot of times you will see the hips of a squatter fly up fast while their head barely moves. This squat rep quickly turns into an inefficient and back-pounding good morning. By trying to stand up while driving your shoulders into the bar, you will be helping your body maximize natural leverages.

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