The squat is called the king of leg exercises by many people, but there are a few problems. Most people do not know how to squat correctly in the first place, and many of those who do are dealing with some sort of injury.
Mobility restriction or body structure (leg length, torso length, etc.) can make squatting difficult for some people to master. Those who have mastered the squat have accumulated injuries through years of hard training and perfecting the move.
Front squats are a good alternative to the back squat for leg development and especially the quads but learning and holding the bar on the shoulders can be tough. The squat movement is necessary for leg development but adding load to an exercise can create issues.
It is important to remember that the squat is a movement pattern and not everybody is ready for certain variations of the squat. Not to fret, the landmine squat may be the solution to many of your squatting problems.
Who Should Use the Landmine Squat?
The landmine squat is a great way to progress towards the front squat or back squat. It is a great teaching tool for the squat pattern. I recently added them to my squat progression after seeing Gary Schofield’s (strength coach at Greater Atlanta Christian School) version. That guy is much smarter than me, so I listen when he speaks.
The arc of the bar helps reinforce sitting back during the squat as you descend into the bottom of the move. This is the primary reason the landmine squat has become my first move in beginning to teach the squat, bumping the goblet squat to number two.
Those With Aches and Pains
The landmine squat is also much more joint-friendly than it’s goblet squat and front squat friends. Because of the arc of the weight, you are allowed to sit back more while staying upright and less forward knee travel is required. The knees moving forward excessively is often what causes most people’s knee pain while squatting.
Because the landmine squat is easier on the knees and lower back it is perfect for augmenting the front or back squat. Front and back squats can begin to wear on the body as volume begins to rise. The landmine squat allows you to add extra volume whether intraworkout or within your weekly training plan. Heavier loads can also be used when compared with the goblet squat, allowing for you to push the limits of your strength. So now you can train the squat more frequently, with higher volume, and greater intensity and not break yourself.
How to do the Landmine Squat
The landmine squat starts with a barbell placed in the corner of the room or in a special landmine attachment.
From there grab the open end of the bar and bring it to your chest with your feet slightly behind your body. This will help take into account the arc of the weight as it is lowered. It may take you a few reps to find the perfect position for your specific body measurements.
Slowly lower down into the squat and remember to sit your hips back then stand back up just like any other squat. Here is a demonstration of the exercise. Give it a shot and tell me what you think!