Updated: Dec 10, 2020
Banded front squats are a great alternative for home training if you perform Olympic lifts and have no equipment. This exercise is even great if you’re just looking for another exercise to add into your exercise regimen. Either way the movement is great to try out and improve your weightlifting technique.
What are Banded Front Squats?
The movements main use is for technique in the receiving position, which carries over to cleans and squats as well. The band pulls the bar down as you come back up from the front squat, and during this pull the bar wants to slip out from your grasp.
How do you counter slippage? Keeping your body in the upright position, bracing your core, and keeping your elbows up. The exact things needed to prevent dropping the bar on the platform. This works on one of the most problematic areas people have with weightlifting.
Other benefits for you if you’re not a weightlifting athlete are improving leg and core strength. Depending on the band used for resistance, you may need to perform extra repetitions to get enough effort in for better muscle use.
Great Carry Over for Squats
Staying in an upright position allows better use of your legs and hips during the back squat, which is one reason even low bar powerlifters perform these during off season from competitions. Working on all areas of the squat improves your overall performance regardless the bar position.
Banded front squats at home give you this opportunity when unable to be at the gym and have limited equipment and space at home. Doesn’t have to be executed every day; just once or twice each week will suffice for all programs being performed when exercising at home.
Equipment Needed for Banded Front Squats
All you need for this exercise are one or several loop bands and a sturdy pole. Bands depend on your strength and how much you can afford or even find to purchase.
Those with a wider stance are going to use bands slightly lighter than those who squat narrower. Basically, the wider your stance stepping on bands the more resistance you feel.
As for the pole, you want something sturdy that has little to no bend when put under tension. A PVC pipe is the easiest choice and can be bought for a few dollars or less at hardware stores. Only needs to be 5-6 feet in length.
Other pole choices can be what’s around such as a shovel, wooden broom stick, long pipes laying around etc.
How to Perform Banded Front Squats
The first part you do is place the band on the floor evenly aligned and under the middle of your feet or slightly more towards the heels. Shift your feet in or out depending on your front squat stance. (1)
For those new to front squats, place feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart with toes angled out 40-45 degrees.
Next, you hold the other side of the band up and slide the pole you have chosen through the loop evenly down the middle and turn to be against your body. This will tighten the band loop to stay in place. (2)
Lastly, to get into the front squat position hold the bar tightly and clean the bar up to the receiving position. (3)
Now you’re ready to perform the front squat. Keep your chest up to stay upright and hold that bar in position with your fingers. Brace your core and start performing the movement. The band will slacken as you drop lower, then tighten the higher you go.
Note: Be careful when coming out of the receiving position. The band is still tight and will snap down if you don’t have a firm grasp.
Now You Have a New Exercise for Home Training
The banded front squat will be a nice addition to your exercise variety when stuck working out at home. Keeping your routines fresh not only motivates you to keep training, but also helps with maintaining your front squat form without a barbell and weights available.
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