Health and Fitness with Bill Walker

GET DOWN THERE PART 2!!!! A Squat Symposium

Huzzah friends,

Previously, when we last reconvened our righteous rendezvous of Exemplary Exercise Excellence, as in the one true squat of below parallel deep squatting, I told you in the spirit of George R.R. Martin, acclaimed author of Game of Thrones and oftentimes he may split his book into two books (Where is Book #6, George?) that we decided to split the article into two pieces leaving the latter half for questions, answers and comments.

We spoke about squatting.  Below is a slight Q &A session I have for you.

But before the session, if you have not read the first article about squatting then click the link below…

GET DOWN THERE!!! A Tome to The Squat

Q&A Session

Can beginners squat heavy?

Yes.  However I advise they have moved through all the proper progressions and are aware on form. Nothing is static but good technique.

How should I progress again?

1) Assisted Rail Squats

2) Body-weight squats

3) Goblet squats

 

4) Barbell squats – standard barbells are 45 lbs.  Your gym will probably have training bars or already loaded lighter barbells.  Use those until you can consistently squat at depth with no problem.

Can I squat more than once a week.

Yes

How often should I go heavy or light?

I advise you alternate to have strength on different spectrums.

How fast will I progress?

No way to tell.  However know that just because you hit x heavy number that week, doesn’t mean you’ll do it again the next. You may or may not as there are a different factors ranging from sleep, food, recovery, stress,

attitude and probably more. Think of strength like fat loss, it’s akin to a stock chart. It goes up and down, but will trend in the desired direction of your goal. If  it’s a perfect line, then it’s highly likely that said

individual is using drugs, which is another topic for later.

Will it make my butt big? I want a bigger butt

Not tomorrow, but a strong butt makes for a strong athlete. The long term answer is yes but you won’t go from a frog standing up to Serena…those are drugs.

Can you make great gains in the posterior? Yes, but that takes time…slow and consistent time.

Can you see short term booty goals? Yes.

I don’t want a bigger butt

Squat anyway.  Valar Morsquatus – All Men must Squat. Plus squatting works the legs and hips as well. I personally go for more athletic development than just one body part. (This is a play on words from Game of Throne’s Valar Morghulis)

***Writer’s Note, I will craft an article about the butt very soon….stay tuned***

 

I heard you don’t need to go to that low…

That is a lie from the pit of the hell, you’re either going low or you’re not squatting…just knee bending

***Note. I have recently seen updated trusted research that said quarter (ugh ugh ugh ugh ugh) squatting is a more preference for speed. However if your goal is speed, why even do a half rep when you can do actual speed work and do real squatting for overall strength. Yes full ROM squatting makes you stronger.

I heard that squatting is bad for your knees.

No. Quarter squatting is bad for your knees as you’re abruptly stopping weight mid through. ***Tim or a science guy, if I’m slightly off , let me know***.

Why do you suggest depth or ATG squats?

I recommend full ROM – Range of motion on all exercises period. What the body was meant for is what you should do. Full ROM = more muscles worked = a stronger human being.

Here is a video I captured of squatting with young mutant hopefuls.

 

I WILL SAY that a reliable source I recently became aware of is @chrisabeardsley on IG – a strength and conditioning scientist said that it’s recently been noted that quarter and parallel squats (parallel = crease of your hip is in line with knee, higher than depth) cause more glute and quad activation.  I guess all you pansies can rejoice BUT, we’re not concerning ourselves with JUST quads/glutes as we’re working the full hip muscles.  The study was concerning muscle activation.  Again though, it was not suggesting a preference but showing research.  You can simply squat depth and add other exercises.

Should I squat on a Smith machine?

No

Why? 

You’re cheating yourself actual full ROM, as you’ll get a faulty movement pattern through the machine. The machine is doing all the work. I’m not totally anti machine but pro free weights. You recruit more muscles with free weights and have actual strength.  Most machines IMO are merely for good assistance work or maybe a tune up.

But Bill, I can lift more.

Of course you can…you’re NOT doing all the work. Also you work your core more with free weights.

Plus you look like an idiot posting your heavy weight smith machine squat video.

Are you 70 plus (NOT to offend the elderly)?

I have a homeboy who in his 60’s was squatting deep and out lifting his son…with the actual barbell.

He still lifts. He’s also a vet… which says something.  Shout out to my dude Airborne and all the Army Rangers.

If you’re injured or just lack the motion…then whatever….I say just do light weight goblet squats or other leg work. If you’re injured why would you squat heavy on a smith machine? Your injured.  Your goal should be recovery and weights under control.

If you’re really using the smith, I assume it’s because you have to medically or whatever  (or on drugs). I personally say thee nay.

I say thee nay

I say thee nay

I say thee nay

I…say…thee…nay

I have kids, can they squat heavy? Can they work out?

The answer is of course, but keep in mind that they’re kids.  Heavy is relative.

***I’ll use this moment to give a shout out to one of my Ballou students who at 16, hit 185 for 3 on her squats. Fun fact: SHE outdid the WHOLE WEIGHT ROOM!!!!***

 

It is worth nothing that she did not come in squatting “heavy” out the gate.  I normally test everyone with the preliminary work.

What can I use the Smith for?

Putting your towel on it. Inverted rows.  Bodyweight Tricep extensions, and hip thrusters.  Totally up to you though.

Bill….can I just do leg presses instead of squatting?

The Leg press is a great assistance movement but it doesn’t replace squatting…you work more muscles standing with free weights anyway. Am I saying. don’t do the leg press…NO!

I just hate that people get all hyped up for the leg press…it’s a leg press…SQUAT!!!!

I have a bad knee.

Get checked out and Godspeed number one.  I say do bodyweight squats if you can.  Then slowly build up…if you can flex and extend your leg and knee, you should be able to hit depth…that’s why I suggest pushing your knees out as you squat.

BILL…I can really lift more if I’m not going that low

Then you’re not squatting.

 

A GREAT “fat burning cardio exercise” is 10-rep full depth squats. Add these in your arsenal and you’ll feel like you ran a few miles or sprinted after or from an animal depending on your perspective. I prefer the thought of running after because I like jungle cats and I rather run after than run from. Run after greatness.

Men and Women should squat. You will not have success in any true athletic endeavor without squatting.  You will not be welcomed to Valhalla without squatting. You will not be a warrior without squatting.

You will not be a true G without squatting. What reason do you have to neglect your lower body other than you’re a cold blooded coward?   Do you know how rewarding it is to reach depth and be able to help others? The squat is such a mental exercise, and probably the most demanding of the lifts. It goes noting that even the Snatch and the Clean and Jerk are based around squatting…

It’s very intense and requires full concentration and awareness. You have to be present.

It’s probably one of the dopest metaphors for life period, as life rest itself on your shoulders, what do you do as it presses you down? YOU STAND UP! STAND UP WITH ALL THE FURY YOU CAN MUSTER, AND CONQUER THE BEAST THAT IS LIFE!

Well. that’s enough for now. I hope the good Lord enables you to squat deep as long as you are on this planet. Whether it’s 135 or 700 lbs. We’ll talk more on squatting. This was a basic tome.  There’s more info but that comes with experience.

Ladies….either your dude squats depth or he’s not your dude….he’s your girl (provided he’s healthy…blah blah blah…but Bill I’m…yada yada yada)

Fellas…don’t be the reason a woman quarter squats.  Be an example to yourself, be excellent. Squat deep and squat true.

I don’t want to see any ego lifting from man, woman, or child. You squat properly or learn how to do so. A quarter might take you a light way but a full squat will take you all the way. Go all the way. Kids…squat past parallel. Don’t let adults quarter squat either. I’m counting on you all.

You are the new young mutants and by mutants I mean humans born with extraordinary abilities.  A prime example are the X-men from Marvel Comics).  I want to look down from Valhalla Heaven and be proud of your efforts like this.

 

References and shoutouts

 

Tim Henriques of NPTI. Great resource…I made sure I went through his sections on squatting a few times upon writing. He has a great book, “All About Powerlifting.” Fun fact, I attended one of his workshops. IG @nptiva

Chris A Beardsley – Strength and Conditioning Scientist – I have never met him personally, but I follow him on IG. A billion dollar education right there.  @chrisabeardsley on IG and online at www.strengthandconditioningresearch.com

Juan O. Gonzalez @fitnessflourishpres  –  I give a wealth of credit to Juan. Around January in 2016, He started helping me with my back squat depth.  I started all the way over with a humble 65lbs and in about 14 months time, I was able to hit 405.  ***Note: this is not typical as I was already very strong in my front squats but we started over.

Shad Mitchell – Superhuman strength and  knowledge.  Goes without saying by now.

All my gym folks.  It’s a lot of you.

My Middle school and High School Kids. Kelly Miller and Ballou High School for being great examples. Ballou  – @ballouhs on IG. @kellymillerms on IG.

One of the best things as a trainer is to see you do well,  One of my dope middle schoolers, “Abreya” I can count on teach others how to squat.  Also my young bros, Trent and Julian.

My “Adopted child” Shae who one day out did the whole football team at Ballou High School in her squat as mentioned earlier. At 16, she’s a straight A student and hit 185 for 3 on her squat…at…six…teen. She’s squats better than dudes. That’s her in the vid.

All of Bill’s Angels…who again…squat better than some of you dudes lol.

All of my bros who were humble enough and inspired enough to squat properly…big salute.

May the gains be with you.

There are many other dope vids and resources on squatting.  Along with knowledge I hope I have encouraged you to have a zeal for learning information.

 

 

About the author:

Bill Walker is a Certified Personal Trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), one of the top recognized agencies in the country.  He’s also a Youth Fitness Coach in Washington DC. He specializes in getting you incredibly strong, lean (fat loss), Not living by a diet, building butts for women, and teaching the fine art of the riddle of steel among many other things. He works at one of the top rated gyms in Washington DC. He also does house calls or outside calls.  To set up an appointment or inquiry contact him at Bwalker929@gmail.com

Instagram: @BilliusMaximus929

 You should do it right now.

Did you contact him yet?

 

 

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