Originally Posted by Brian Lawyer
Aimee is gracing us with her hot sports opinions on low bar back squats. Awesome! I'm just kidding.
For real, the more I learn about squatting, I am finding the LBBS are not as functional as some would think. I don't think it is Rippatoes fault. He originally wrote the book for getting skinny high school kids and other begginers to pack on some strength. I had read somewhere that the SS LBBS is basically a modified "Good Morning" lift. I find that to be somewhat true.
I have also read that Rip himself admits his LBBS does nothing for standing up out of the "hole" in Olympic lifting, something that requires quadriceps. I believe Rip was noting that the transfer of LBBS strength to Olympic lifting is that it primarily benefits the first pull.
Very good response, and I agree.
They are simply not as functional as some people believe. There is, in my opinion, a reason Rip's fantastic book is called "starting strength". It is for BEGINNERS. In the long run, people who only LBBS try to snatch and clean "goodmorning" style. It simply does not transfer over. Period. It may work for a while, merely because the athlete is strong enough to muscle the snatch or clean, but once they get beyond that point, they have nowhere to go. Am I biased? absolutely! Do I have reason? Yes. Do we need to strengthen our pull? yes... so we do pulls. The LBBS does not prepare you to receive heavy loads in the snatch and the clean, because you are not strong with an upright position, and your quads won't be nearly as strong as they will be from doing HBBS.
Stacey, you say your quads have always been weak. If you start HBBS'ing, that would strengthen your quads. LBBS does not target the quads. Also, no disrespect towards Rip, because he is a very smart dude, at WHAT HE DOES. which is teaching BEGINNER powerlifters. Not weightlifters. There is a huge difference here. But you should not be looking to him for advice in O'lifting or getting strong for o'lifting. Glen Pendlay? Absolutely! Mike Burgener, heck ya! Greg? Yes. Go to Rip for starting strength for the power lifter. Please don't mistake my post here as a Rip bash. Because it isn't. I really like the guy, and I think he teaches what he teaches very well. however, there is a huge misconception out there that he is the go-to guy for o'lifting strength. I am sorry, but I strongly disagree with your statement: "I think you can low-bar squats just fine without developing any real imbalances, especially if you invest in some decent squat shoes, since they’ll get you more into your quads anyway, because I’ve taught many of my clients to squat this way and none of them have developed raging imbalances (no shooting hips, or the like)".
If you are never going to perform the O'Lifts, or are not worried about increasing your strength for the O'Lifts, then yes... LBBS away, it is a good way to get starting strength. But, if you want to improve your lifts, and get stronger for them, then you need to drop the LBBS and stick to the HBBS.
I am not trying to put you down here, please don't mistake my post. These are only my opinions. I advise everyone to learn both ways, and then decide for themselves what they think is better. Every single person I know who has switched over sees DRASTIC improvements in their lifts and their strength. Read this article: The Low Bar Back Squat for Weightlifters