Narrow-Stance Back Squat
Narrow-stance squat, pulling-stance squat
The pulling-stance back squat is a relatively rare variation of the squat used occasionally for variety or to help strengthen a lifter’s pull in the snatch and clean.
Place the barbell behind your neck—retract your shoulder blades tightly and rest the bar in the meat of your upper traps. Place your feet in your pulling position
or narrower. Set your back in a complete arch, take in a large breath, and lock it in, forcefully tightening all trunk musculature. Bend at the knees and hips simultaneously to move down as directly as possible into the bottom of the squat with an upright posture, maintaining tension on the legs throughout the movement and controlling the speed of the descent. Full depth is achieved when the knees are closed as much as possible without losing the arch in the back (if you cannot sit into a full depth squat, you need to work on mobility). Upon reaching the bottom position, immediately transition and stand as aggressively as possible, again with the knees and hips together to maintain your upright posture—try to lead the movement with your head and shoulders.
This lift is sometimes done with the knees directed nearly forward, although if being used specifically to strengthen the snatch or clean pull, they should be oriented exactly how they are in that lifter’s pull.
The pulling-stance back squat can be used to strengthen a lifter’s pull from the floor in the snatch and clean, or to emphasize quad strength.
The pulling-stance back squat would most often be used once weekly in addition to normal back squats and front squats. Generally sets of 3-5 reps are most effective at 70% of the lifter’s best back and higher.
The pulling-stance back squat can be performed as a pause squat
, with prescribed tempos (usually slow eccentric
movement), and as a 1¼ squat