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  1. #1
    dkaler is offline Senior Member
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    Default Comrades - need help with OH squats please

    I tried to do some OH squats today but I don't think I was doing them correctly. I take that back, I'm sure I wasn't. Pavel doesn't cover them in the RKC book. I watched the More RKC video - he covers front squats extensively, but nothing on OH squats in particular (I'll have to fast forward through it once more to make sure - but I didn't see anything). I've seen pictures of Steve Maxwell (& I think Pavel also) doing them. It looks basically like squatting like you would for a front squat, but holding the bells overhead. My question is how do you hold the bells ? Are the elbows locked & arms straight or are the arms bent. I had a really tough time because the center of gravity was shifted up so much higher. Is the squat the same as for a front squat, except with the bells held overhead? Any help is greatly appreciated and as usual thanks for all answers in advance.

  2. #2
    powerlifter54 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Party Tricks

    dkaler,

    Why do you want to do this exercise? It is not part of any competition move, and there are better ways to strengthen legs, back, or shoulders. Overhead squats are done by Oly lifters to master the SKILL of rising from a snatch. They are fun, but so is riding a Vespa. Both are useless.

    What do you want to accomplish? What weakness do you want to fix? You should never do any drill or exercise that you cannot explain the purpose you are attempting to accomplish.

    Party tricks are a waste of time. This exercise is a party trick. Try pistols, back squats, front squats with KB or DB, Good morning, Zerchers, SP, MP, Push press, etc.

    jmo
    jack

  3. #3
    Ross Hunt is offline Senior Member
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    Default Jack,

    Do you think the OH squat has value as an exercise for developing flexibility and squatting technique?

    Ross Hunt

  4. #4
    JLB
    JLB is offline Senior Member
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    Default Me too, OH squatting tips w/b appreciated! n/m

    nmnmnmnmnm

  5. #5
    jomcgui is offline Senior Member
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    Default Jack,

    I end up in the overhead squat with the double sots excercise. I also had found that it is difficult to hold the elbow locked overhead position. Here's how I have worked in it. Take lighter weights, gallons of water and do the excercise that way. Get a rope, bungee cord,pull them apart overhead about shoulder width and sink into your squat. Also try to extend your chest forward in order to arch your back.

  6. #6
    pipsqueak is offline Junior Member
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    Default Comrades - need help with OH squats please

    I'm not qualified to answer this but Coach Dan John says to lock your elbows, really try to pull the bar apart, and hold it over your HEAD. This is probably the most difficult part for me, the weight keeps wanting to come forward. I included a link to his article but here's a quote of the pertinent information:

    “I would only do one exercise, if I could do it all over again,” Chris told me. “Really? Which one?” “Overhead Squats.” I thought he was joking. Sure, I had done a few and I thought they never really amounted to anything. “This coach in California won’t let his guys throw until they can do fifteen reps with bodyweight.” What? Fifteen? “It makes you one piece, an animal.”

    Monday found me in the weight room. I thought I would just “toss” in a few overheads, just to see what he was talking about. I knew I had to do a few warm ups, so I tossed a 45 on each side of the bar. I thought I would knock off a quick ten or so. I went to the rack, stepped back and let my hands slide out to the inside collars (at just over six feet tall, this is my usual snatch grip), then push jerked the weight up to arms length. Locking my elbows and really trying to pull the bar apart while holding it straight over my head, I sank between my knees, dropped to rock bottom and came back up.



    Dan John - Overhead

  7. #7
    fa_jing is offline Senior Member
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    Default KB OH squats

    Locked arms, or slightly bent at the bottom if it helps. Squeeze your abs hard. Your knees will go out past your ankles.

    For me, they are basically one more OH exercise to be done with the KB's. I don't do them regularly, but they are as good as any other for relaxing the shoulder girdle, etc. I think there is some carryover to the standing overhead hold, although just training the standing OH hold might be more efficient for that. Also, it is a good move to throw in for one of your combo sequences, such as the bear sequence.

  8. #8
    powerlifter54 is offline Senior Member
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    Default More

    If you want to get good at double sots, then overhead away. If you are an Oly lifter, they are great for technique. They are Ok for increasing flexibility, and i used them last year when my abs couldn't handle backsquatting after surgery. Thye got easier as i increased weight, but 15 reps overhead with bodyweight? Is the sport to overhead squat or to throw something. Dan is a smart throwing coach but that idea is off, imho.

    I never have done them with a KB, but with a barbell retract your scaps, pull bar apart and push your butt back. This is one time i advocate holding your head up and back. Lowering is the hard part. Rising is easy.

    Still don't think much of the move.

    jack

  9. #9
    Mike Krivka is offline Senior Member
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    Default ARGH!!! OHS's are the test of your mettle... Pavel/Mike Mahler: H-E-L-P!!!!

    I can't believe I'm reading this!!! I've been lifting for over 25 years and NOTHING has tested my physical and mental abilities like working on the overhead squat. This exercise is the pallet where your strengths and weaknesses are displayed for all to see...

    If you have never tried them before I would suggest starting out with an exercise band stretch above and behind your head and then attempting the squat. Once that starts to feel easy and you find your 'groove' then I would try it with 1 KB. Same idea but the stability, flexibility, and coordination issues come into the forefront even more. Try watching the KB and see if it helps solidify the up and down groove even more. Two KB's are a different beast altogether but START LIGHT!!!

    I have found that people who can normally squat in the 400's can't do ONE OHS with one-fourth of that weight... you want to talk about getting strong and functional: do OHS's!!! :P

    BTW - This has inspired me to work even harder on my OHS's and document the results...Mike Krivka and Martial Arts Koncepts

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