NOT above it. During the squat, the entire lower extremity, including the thigh, lower leg, and foot should be in a straight line to optimize loading potential. As you can tell, there’s no hard and fast rule that determines whether a squat is high or low bar — it’s more like a ‘range’. Learn 13 principles that create more effective powerlifting technique. In order to achieve the position described above, you can play around with where the bar sits on your back. One of the main differences between the low-bar and high-bar squat is bar placement on the back. Taking the barbell out of the rack correctly is the first step to any successful squat. Keeping the bar over the mid-part of the foot is an important biomechanical principle to understand. But as long as your back is neutral (not rounding), you’re looking for the bar to be over the mid-point of the foot. In a low bar squat the bar goes just below the spine of the scapula on our back. The high-bar squat has the bar lay on top of the shoulder, just below the C-7 vertebrate. Give yourself the time to get used to the lower rack position. Your bar placement will also depend on your back angle. As long as the bar is over the middle of your foot throughout the movement, what you are doing is CORRECT! Also, in my article on Powerlifting vs Olympic Squats, I discuss that based on the type of squat you do the bar position on your back will change. When the bar comes out of this groove, you’ll be wasting energy by fighting forces to keep you balanced. When you stand with the bar on your back, draw a straight line down to your feet. The optimal position is going to be where the bar sits directly in line with the mid part of the foot when you’re at the bottom of the squat. The low bar squat is the preference for most powerlifters and people looking to increase their 1 rep max. One of the sports that advocate for a high bar position while squatting is Olympic weightlifting. As such, when they practice squatting in training, they’re picking the variation that train the quads to work the hardest. Hands are typically held wider to accommodate the low bar position. For a low-bar squat the barbell has to sit in the “shelf”. The high bar position will require you to be more upright in your squats. While high bar and low bar are very similar they are not the same. A low bar squat will sit somewhere between the middle and top of the rear delt. Their low back and glutes feel really sore because of the new position. If the only variation you do is the low-bar squat, this may be your simplest, most powerful solution. If you choose to squat in a low bar position, you need to wear the right squat shoes. I'm wondering now if my bicep tendonitis was caused by my squatting rather than the pull-ups which is what I was blaming it on. So what is the best squat shoe for low bar? If the bar is too low on your back it again doesn’t really have much to rest on so your arms end up taking the brunt of the weight. On a personal level, I’ve been dedicating myself to the world of powerlifting for the past 15 years, having both competed and coached at the highest level. As with the high-bar back squat and the front squat, the bar should be set about chest height. So where should you put the bar when squatting? One of the most common low bar mistakes happens right out the gate with where people are placing the bar on their back. With all this in mind, let’s return to our twins- one front squatting and one low bar back squatting. It’s going to feel like you’re supporting a lot of the weight in your arms. Essentially a very close variation of their 1RM squat … But not everyone is a powerlifter, and not everyone has the goal to lift as much as possible. Not simply because the person has some forward torso lean. 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