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View Full Version : Pause Squat to Back Squat Conversion


Michael Abbruzzese
05-21-2014, 04:23 AM
I just got back to squatting for the past 6 months after taking some time off, and I have exclusively been doing pause squats. Now I want to transition into back squatting. I tested by pause squat 1RM at 385lbs, but what should this translate into for a regular squat? I don't want to test it outright b/c I just spent the last week testing max attempts for all my other lifts. I'm gonna deload then get right back into a routine to build leg strength, so I wanna get an idea as to where my back squat is w/o actually testing it until after the end of the macrocycle. I'm assuming it 5%-10% more, but that's purely a guess. Thanks

Blake Barnes
05-21-2014, 02:27 PM
Hm that's a tough one. But I think you're right. I just calculated mine and my pause back squat is 93% of my regular back squat. I would keep in mind throughout the cycle that you don't know your true back squat so if you're working with a heavy percentage (say 90-95%) and it feels like 70kg then it's probably safe to bump up the weight just a little bit.

Michael Abbruzzese
05-21-2014, 11:50 PM
Thanks for the response. I'm only looking for a number to plug into my Smolov calculator (I'm only doing the volume phase to build my work capacity and groove the movement before getting into a training schedule for a meet in the fall). I'm gonna stay conservative and say 5% (in fact I'm only bumping up my max by 10lbs for Smolov or less than 3%) because I haven't been regular back squatting like I'm sure you have, and I have a feeling that its gonna be awkward at first neuromuscularly speaking. Besides, I'm not used to bearing the extra weight on my shoulders. I'm sure by the end of the Smolov volume phase, I'll have a better idea what my true back squat max is.