Barbell hack squats

I just switched programs and did these today for the first time (my gym doesn't have a hack squat machine) and found them awkward as hell. Do they ever become unawkward? Are they indeed useful or should I do something else instead?

Replies

  • cajuntank
    cajuntank Posts: 924 Member
    edited May 2016
    I have not done these yet myself, but I know it's an exercise in "the pool" of exercises I will get around to. I do remember some advice on them was to do them with raised heels (so maybe using plates or wood to raise the heels some) to create better bar path (so it doesn't hit the butt) and to make sure torso remains erect throughout the full range of motion.

    They are a good hypertrophy movement and they have a lot of functional athletic transfer (much like front squats do). So lighter weight for 8-15 rep range is most common. Definitely not a movement to take heavy.
  • jimmmer
    jimmmer Posts: 3,535 Member
    I could never get used to them. Short arms + long torso = smacking myself in the *kitten* with them.

    I've since seen the same thing that cajuntank mentioned: use a riser/block to solve the *kitten*-hitting problem, so maybe I'll give them another go....

  • jimmmer
    jimmmer Posts: 3,535 Member
    Oh, come on MFP! You can say butt, but you can't say *kitten*? Ludicrous!
  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,552 Member
    meh- those are hard on the knee IMHO

    I'd rather do front squats - I realize not the same- but. feels safer.

    I don't care for them- or jefferson deadlifts. Somethings are just to awkward LOL
  • singingflutelady
    singingflutelady Posts: 8,738 Member
    Lol I do Jeffersons once in a while and don't find them awkward as I am used to them and like them because you can move big weight with them but not sure about hack squats lol. Oh I'm doing PHAT
  • jimmmer
    jimmmer Posts: 3,535 Member
    Lol I do Jeffersons once in a while and don't find them awkward as I am used to them and like them because you can move big weight with them but not sure about hack squats lol. Oh I'm doing PHAT

    I don't find Jeffersons awkward either.

    I'm guessing it has to do with leverages - some people are better suited to certain squat and deadlift styles than others...
  • sunnybeaches105
    sunnybeaches105 Posts: 2,831 Member
    IMHO, they're too awkward and too difficult to load sufficiently to make it worth the effort. Use a hack squat machine or another squat variation.
  • singingflutelady
    singingflutelady Posts: 8,738 Member
    No hack machine :( I am also doing back squats as part of this program so either front or zercher I guess
  • jimmmer
    jimmmer Posts: 3,535 Member
    Before you give up on them, I'd try re-tooling your form with a raised heel (of varying degrees). If you can find the sweet spot, then you'll have a monster quad exercise. If not, abandon and move on. Plenty more fish in the sea.

  • JoRocka
    JoRocka Posts: 17,552 Member
    jimmmer wrote: »
    Lol I do Jeffersons once in a while and don't find them awkward as I am used to them and like them because you can move big weight with them but not sure about hack squats lol. Oh I'm doing PHAT

    I don't find Jeffersons awkward either.

    I'm guessing it has to do with leverages - some people are better suited to certain squat and deadlift styles than others...

    that's so odd.

    Because of all the wackadoo things I've done in the gym- Jefferson squats were easily one of the top 5 "why the **ck am I doing this" lifts. Just really uncomfortable and no way I'd want to pull heavy weight with it- I think I did 135 with them as a trial and wouldn't want to go over 225 at all. Just. so weird!
  • singingflutelady
    singingflutelady Posts: 8,738 Member
    edited May 2016
    I can pull at least 40 lbs heavier doing Jeffersons as opposed to conventional DL
  • singingflutelady
    singingflutelady Posts: 8,738 Member
    I tried them with plates under my heels and voila, it worked much better! Thanks