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Front Squats: Smith vs. Free

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  • Front Squats: Smith vs. Free

    I've been doing smith front squats in my DC routine for a while now, and I was thinking about switching to free bar front squats. I've been having patellar tendonitis, and I thought that switching to free bar would force me to use less weight for a while. I was also wondering if smith front squats might be worse for my knees since the bar is on a fixed track and has less natural movement. Any advice on this?

  • #2
    In the past I have done front squats barbell and it took slot out of my core but was a great quad exercise
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    • #3
      The ONLY time i ever injured my knee(it was the left) was while doing front squats on the Smith. I haven't used a Smith for squatting since 1984.

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      • #4
        Smith machine squats = restriction! Forcing a linear ROM on a rotary function can only lead to harm - eventually. Your muscles don't work that way.
        No-one trains HARDER!!

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        • #5
          Hi Lifter
          How are you doing with those lap squats. Have your quads blown up past those 28 inches.

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          • #6
            Do more people here think that barbell front squats are a better exercise than smith front squats for DC training?

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            • #7
              Your foot placement on the front squats (under the bar, ahead of the bar, behind the bar) will have an effect on the stress on your knees - using a free bar will eliminate that because the bar can move in relation to your feed and get you into the "best" position for your own knees.
              I can't really comment on whether they are better for DC or not, but free bar squats will let your body find its "groove" better, which should in theory lead to less injuries and more gains...

              TrueNutrition.com discount code: AAL229 saves you 5%

              Feel free to PM me with injury questions - I'll get back to you soon as I can.

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              • #8
                As long as you have a power rack and set the pins right there's no good reason to resort to doing them in a smith machine. Use one of those sting ray/manta ray things if you need to, I use one. Plus it will improve core stability by involving your abs and lower back, etc. instead of eliminating them in the smith.

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                • #9
                  I did free bar front squats today instead of using the smith. It definitely felt better on my knee, but I'm going to have to learn how to do them again. I was losing balance in my upper body before my legs were failing. I ended up doing an extra set to try to make up for not going to failure.

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                  • #10
                    Lots of upper back work(face pulls) and ghr helped me when I front squated.
                    [http://www.truenutrition.com

                    -discount code: ADA774-



                    Buy the highest quality protein and other supplements at the lowest prices.
                    Save 5% on all orders.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by mister69 View Post
                      Lots of upper back work(face pulls) and ghr helped me when I front squated.
                      What is ghr?

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                      • #12
                        Glute Ham raises. Or a 45drgree hyper
                        [http://www.truenutrition.com

                        -discount code: ADA774-



                        Buy the highest quality protein and other supplements at the lowest prices.
                        Save 5% on all orders.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by massivefreak View Post
                          As long as you have a power rack and set the pins right there's no good reason to resort to doing them in a smith machine. Use one of those sting ray/manta ray things if you need to, I use one. Plus it will improve core stability by involving your abs and lower back, etc. instead of eliminating them in the smith.
                          I'm thinking about buying a Sting Ray to help with balancing front squats. Do others on here use/recommend this?

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                          • #14
                            a wise man once said, if your goal is to get stronger, why use a crutch?
                            M.S., B.S., B.A., CSCS, USAW

                            "There is no substitute for strength, and no excuse for the lack of it"

                            "Two pains in life: pain of hard work and pain of regret"

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                            • #15
                              that brineal says some smart sh*t once in awhile....
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