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Old 10-04-17, 07:18 PM   #51
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The knee is most stable in two positions, just short of fully extended (not quite locked out) an fully flexed. As long as your technique is good, full squats are actually safer than changing direction of travel from a partially flexed position.

Here's a trick from the power gyms if you are having problems coming back up from a full squat. Reduce the weight and add a length of heavy chain to each side of the bar. The chain should just clear the floor when you are in the standing position. As you squat, the chain will coil on the floor reducing the weight slightly at the bottom and increasing it as you push upward. As you improve, wrap the chain around the bar one time so a bit less of the chain coils on the floor. Repeat wrapping the chain one more revolution around the bar every few workouts until the chain doesn't touch the floor even at the very bottom. Great way to even out quads and glutes that are strong at the top but weaker at the bottom of the squat.
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Old 10-04-17, 11:22 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by alm958 View Post
http://www.strengthandconditioningre...squats/?s=EMG#

I found this thread asking the same question as the poster. The above article on joint angle specificity of strength gains is interesting.

If one can realize greater strength gains at specific joint angles more relevant to a cyclist and can do so with less hypertrophy wouldn't that be better for a cyclist? It seems to me in theory it would be. I have read and seen videos of Usain Bolt employing partial squats (not full ROM squats).

I am not taking a position in the Squat-ROM-wars. Just asking questions
There are many studies showing that partial ROM squats develop superior power for some exercises, particularly jumping, cycling, running, those sorts of things, which use partial ROM strength to advantage. Oddly enough, quarter squats improve jumping even more than half squats. Thus many cycling trainers, particularly European trainers, use partial ROM squats. As your article says, it's the principle of specificity. Of course bodybuilders and powerlifters all do full ROM squats.
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Old 10-05-17, 08:58 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by alm958 View Post
http://www.strengthandconditioningre...squats/?s=EMG#

I found this thread asking the same question as the poster. The above article on joint angle specificity of strength gains is interesting.

If one can realize greater strength gains at specific joint angles more relevant to a cyclist and can do so with less hypertrophy wouldn't that be better for a cyclist? It seems to me in theory it would be. I have read and seen videos of Usain Bolt employing partial squats (not full ROM squats).

I am not taking a position in the Squat-ROM-wars. Just asking questions
While everything in the article is likely true, the practical reality is that you won't notice a difference in cycling performance one way or the other.

Consider, the only types of cyclists who really get a significant performance benefit out of strength training are those who need to put out a lot of power quickly: sprinters and certain types of track cyclists. Many other elite cyclists don't even bother to do any serious strength training and the ones that do really only focus on it for a few weeks a year.

If whether you strength train or not barely has an effect on your performance, how much of an effect do you think a fairly minor tweak to your exercise selection will have?
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Old 10-05-17, 09:01 AM   #54
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The knee is most stable in two positions, just short of fully extended (not quite locked out) an fully flexed. As long as your technique is good, full squats are actually safer than changing direction of travel from a partially flexed position.

Here's a trick from the power gyms if you are having problems coming back up from a full squat. Reduce the weight and add a length of heavy chain to each side of the bar. The chain should just clear the floor when you are in the standing position. As you squat, the chain will coil on the floor reducing the weight slightly at the bottom and increasing it as you push upward. As you improve, wrap the chain around the bar one time so a bit less of the chain coils on the floor. Repeat wrapping the chain one more revolution around the bar every few workouts until the chain doesn't touch the floor even at the very bottom. Great way to even out quads and glutes that are strong at the top but weaker at the bottom of the squat.
Actually, you want the chain to be still slightly touching the floor at the top. This is so that the chain doesn't swing and possibly through you off balance.
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Old 10-05-17, 10:20 AM   #55
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Actually, you want the chain to be still slightly touching the floor at the top. This is so that the chain doesn't swing and possibly through you off balance.
Valid point, but an alternative view is that allowing the chain to clear the floor teaches smooth technique, straight up and straight down, and that the slight sway also helps engage stabilizer muscles.

An interesting variation on traditional free weights is the wobble technique. One way to accomplish "wobble" is to hang a small plate at each end of the bar by short loops of bungee cord. You only want a few pounds of "wobble" so that the bar doesn't become difficult to control. Again the idea is to engage stabilizer muscles when training for real-world scenarios where conditions aren't always ideal and loads not always perfectly stable. Of course, you don't want to use wobble techniques when doing low rep max efforts.
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Old 10-05-17, 12:15 PM   #56
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While everything in the article is likely true, the practical reality is that you won't notice a difference in cycling performance one way or the other.

Consider, the only types of cyclists who really get a significant performance benefit out of strength training are those who need to put out a lot of power quickly: sprinters and certain types of track cyclists. Many other elite cyclists don't even bother to do any serious strength training and the ones that do really only focus on it for a few weeks a year.

If whether you strength train or not barely has an effect on your performance, how much of an effect do you think a fairly minor tweak to your exercise selection will have?
It's actually more interesting than that, and thus has a bearing on this thread. There are several RCTs showing cycling performance improvements from concurrent strength training. Among them:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25892654
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In conclusion, adding heavy strength training improved cycling performance, increased fractional utilization of VO2 max , and improved cycling economy.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20799042
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...ES_CYCLING.pdf

The interesting part is that AFAIK all these studies utilized partial squat exercises at max weights. I know of no RCTs which showed that using conventional weight training improved cycling performance other than for sprinting.

My personal experience is that in older cyclists, any weight training will improve performance, but the studied exercises improve it the most. As far as noticeable improvement goes, I would say very noticeable, especially on hilly group rides, and thus probably also for formal competition. I started strength training year 'round after reading the in-season study.

Some of the papers shown above in abstract have PDFs which can be downloaded by searching the article title plus "PDF".
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Old 10-05-17, 02:41 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
It's actually more interesting than that, and thus has a bearing on this thread. There are several RCTs showing cycling performance improvements from concurrent strength training. Among them:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25892654

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20799042
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...ES_CYCLING.pdf

The interesting part is that AFAIK all these studies utilized partial squat exercises at max weights. I know of no RCTs which showed that using conventional weight training improved cycling performance other than for sprinting.

My personal experience is that in older cyclists, any weight training will improve performance, but the studied exercises improve it the most. As far as noticeable improvement goes, I would say very noticeable, especially on hilly group rides, and thus probably also for formal competition. I started strength training year 'round after reading the in-season study.

Some of the papers shown above in abstract have PDFs which can be downloaded by searching the article title plus "PDF".
To go along with that, just look at what coaches are saying nowadays
Fast Talk podcast, ep. 6: Like it or not, you should be lifting | VeloNews.com
Strength Training For Cyclists Part 1 - Physiology | Tailwind Coaching
Strength Training For Cyclists - Part 2 (Podcast #43) | Tailwind Coaching
https://cyclingtips.com/2014/02/gym-...ie-van-dieman/
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Old 10-10-17, 12:02 PM   #58
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It's actually more interesting than that, and thus has a bearing on this thread. There are several RCTs showing cycling performance improvements from concurrent strength training. Among them:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25892654

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20799042
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/...ES_CYCLING.pdf

The interesting part is that AFAIK all these studies utilized partial squat exercises at max weights. I know of no RCTs which showed that using conventional weight training improved cycling performance other than for sprinting.

My personal experience is that in older cyclists, any weight training will improve performance, but the studied exercises improve it the most. As far as noticeable improvement goes, I would say very noticeable, especially on hilly group rides, and thus probably also for formal competition. I started strength training year 'round after reading the in-season study.

Some of the papers shown above in abstract have PDFs which can be downloaded by searching the article title plus "PDF".
To be clear, I was quite careful with my choice of wording when I said significantly. I don't deny that strength training can be beneficial to all cyclists.

Having said that, the answer isn't as clear cut as one might think. Reading the abstract of a study (at least the one that worked for me) doesn't tell me what the control group did instead of strength training. Did they ride more? Do nothing? What would their results have been with more riding or doing a different form of cross training like running? Also not all experts have the same opinion.


Ultimately I stand by what I said: when debating squat depth as it relates to cycling performance, you're essentially debating potential marginal gains on your marginal gains. It doesn't matter.
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Old 10-11-17, 01:38 PM   #59
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Jordan Hasay can not only out-run a lot of you guys, but she can also out-squat you weenies

Play the video, if you dare...

https://www.instagram.com/p/BZeCdMRH...by=jordanhasay
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Old 10-11-17, 02:26 PM   #60
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Jordan Hasay can not only out-run a lot of you guys, but she can also out-squat you weenies

Play the video, if you dare...

https://www.instagram.com/p/BZeCdMRH...by=jordanhasay
Those are bumper plates... so it looks like it's about 125 to me (maybe 155 if the inside plates are 25s). You can see the 45 lb bumpers (and how fat they are) in the bottom right.

Certainly not bad... but not earth shattering either.

Edit: on 2nd viewing, definitely 155.
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Old 10-11-17, 04:08 PM   #61
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To be clear, I was quite careful with my choice of wording when I said significantly. I don't deny that strength training can be beneficial to all cyclists.

Having said that, the answer isn't as clear cut as one might think. Reading the abstract of a study (at least the one that worked for me) doesn't tell me what the control group did instead of strength training. Did they ride more? Do nothing? What would their results have been with more riding or doing a different form of cross training like running? Also not all experts have the same opinion.

Ultimately I stand by what I said: when debating squat depth as it relates to cycling performance, you're essentially debating potential marginal gains on your marginal gains. It doesn't matter.
I'm sorry that some of those links did not work and/or did not produce a pdf. They worked when I posted them. I can email a full PDF of one of them to those who can PM me with their email addy.

As you may have noticed, while I read studies to give me ideas of what to do to train smarter (since I can't train harder), my most successful approach to training has been to experiment on myself. As we say here, everyone is different and responds differently to training.

I thus suggest doing more than reading studies - try training with them. Pick a routine which has produced the most success and give it a year to prove or disprove itself. For those in the northern hemisphere, now is a good time to start.

Combining studies of half squats and my personal experience over the years, suggested percentages of final set:
From now to Dec. 1, 3 sets of 12, 50%, 75%, 100%, twice a week
Dec. 1 to a month before first serious event or competition, 4 sets of 10, 50%, 80%, 90%, 100%, twice a week
During competition period, 1 set of 20 @ 50%, 2 sets of 5, 90%, 100%, once a week

Gradually increasing weights during each period so that one will feel that one cannot complete the final rep of the final set, once a week. With squats, it's probably not a good idea to actually fail the last rep as one would do with isolated lifts. I've never seen a powerlifter fail a squat in training.

Quit at the first sign of leg pain. Don't squat again until that pulled muscle heals. I work out on the bike for 30-60 minutes before lifting.

Increases in max watts, watts in 40k TT, and Wingate test were in the 6%-10% range over those who did not strength train. This is obviously significant.

I would encourage anyone to a go at it, whether they think it will work for them or not.
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Old 10-12-17, 08:15 AM   #62
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I'm sorry that some of those links did not work and/or did not produce a pdf. They worked when I posted them. I can email a full PDF of one of them to those who can PM me with their email addy.

As you may have noticed, while I read studies to give me ideas of what to do to train smarter (since I can't train harder), my most successful approach to training has been to experiment on myself. As we say here, everyone is different and responds differently to training.

I thus suggest doing more than reading studies - try training with them. Pick a routine which has produced the most success and give it a year to prove or disprove itself. For those in the northern hemisphere, now is a good time to start.

Combining studies of half squats and my personal experience over the years, suggested percentages of final set:
From now to Dec. 1, 3 sets of 12, 50%, 75%, 100%, twice a week
Dec. 1 to a month before first serious event or competition, 4 sets of 10, 50%, 80%, 90%, 100%, twice a week
During competition period, 1 set of 20 @ 50%, 2 sets of 5, 90%, 100%, once a week

Gradually increasing weights during each period so that one will feel that one cannot complete the final rep of the final set, once a week. With squats, it's probably not a good idea to actually fail the last rep as one would do with isolated lifts. I've never seen a powerlifter fail a squat in training.

Quit at the first sign of leg pain. Don't squat again until that pulled muscle heals. I work out on the bike for 30-60 minutes before lifting.

Increases in max watts, watts in 40k TT, and Wingate test were in the 6%-10% range over those who did not strength train. This is obviously significant.

I would encourage anyone to a go at it, whether they think it will work for them or not.
Just to be clear, I am a former powerlifter (albeit a fairly mediocre one - you can see me last contest here:
). I squat regularly. I absolutely think people should be weight training. I just don't think you're going to see a massive improvement to your cycling, particularly compared to if you spent that time on the bike, from lifting weights.

If weight training actually improved an elite cyclist's performance by 6-10% over and above any other training choice (i.e. an effect similar to EPO) it wouldn't be considered as an afterthought like it currently is.
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Old 10-12-17, 09:24 AM   #63
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Riding the day after squats is rough. People with flat bars kept passing me, saying "look at that slow-ass roadie, crying on his wonderbike!"
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Old 10-12-17, 12:21 PM   #64
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Just to be clear, I am a former powerlifter (albeit a fairly mediocre one - you can see me last contest here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wVsKnGcHPM). I squat regularly. I absolutely think people should be weight training. I just don't think you're going to see a massive improvement to your cycling, particularly compared to if you spent that time on the bike, from lifting weights.

If weight training actually improved an elite cyclist's performance by 6-10% over and above any other training choice (i.e. an effect similar to EPO) it wouldn't be considered as an afterthought like it currently is.
For the majority of us, it is hard to get in the same amount of time on the bike in the winter, and to do the type of training that will provide gains, mostly due to desire to ride a trainer. This is the perfect time to incorporate weight training to mix it up. Listen to the podcasts I linked above, would love to hear your opinion based on what these coaches with physiology backgrounds have to say. I also think your experience will differ in terms of gains because you already have the musculature, whereas the average cyclist can probably not even squat 200lbs with good form
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Old 10-12-17, 01:30 PM   #65
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For the majority of us, it is hard to get in the same amount of time on the bike in the winter, and to do the type of training that will provide gains, mostly due to desire to ride a trainer. This is the perfect time to incorporate weight training to mix it up. Listen to the podcasts I linked above, would love to hear your opinion based on what these coaches with physiology backgrounds have to say. I also think your experience will differ in terms of gains because you already have the musculature, whereas the average cyclist can probably not even squat 200lbs with good form
I absolutely agree with your point about winter training (I'm in the same boat being in Canada and I hate treadmills/trainers etc.). I will definitely be doing more lifting in the winter.

Furthermore, I think that for most of us, lifting is an excellent compliment to riding. It's still low impact, but is very good for bone density. Riding has also shown to interfere less with building size and strength than jogging (not sure why, but the source I read that from speculated the lack of impact/eccentric and just being generally easier on your body overall). So please understand: I'm very pro lifting.

But it's still a substitute for riding and not going to be as good (from a cycling performance perspective) as actually putting in the miles. I have no doubt lifting does help - the question is how much better is it than whatever other type of training you could do instead.

I think you're also correct that someone who is extremely weak will derive more benefit. I think another thing is that for many of us who aren't in the best shape, we're still at the point where any activity will carry over to our cycling performance. I have no doubt that if I jogged twice a week this winter I'd also improve my cycling.

I'll be perfectly honest... I've spent more time on this than I think the topic is worth. In the last two weeks I've seen articles saying that split squats and dumbbell deadlifts (what a stupid exercise) are the "best" things you can do in the weight room for cycling. We can't even figure out what exercises to do at this point.

The fundamental factor is this: there are pros that don't lift. If it had a significant impact (say more than one or two percent) in their actual race performance, this wouldn't be the case. These guys go to altitude camps to get a temporary benefit of a few percent. They spend time in wind tunnels (or apparently now on indoor velodromes because someone decided that was better) making minute adjustments to their riding position in order save seconds. If they could increase their watts by 5% just from lifting twice a week in the off-season, we would be obsessing over this far more than we do, every pro would be doing it and whatever debate there was would have ended decades ago.

So to summarize my position before I back out of this thread:
Lifting will probably help your riding. How much depends on a number of factors, but if you're a very serious elite rider, then the answer is probably: not that much (unless you're doing track stuff). That's not to say it shouldn't be done (there's a reason most pros do it), just that it isn't going to turn an average pro into a world champion or anything (and a 6-10% change would do just that). It's a perfect example of "marginal gains" IMO.

If you're an average person (like me and, I assume, you) it may help more, particularly if you're quite weak as it's a low hanging fruit in that case. It's a particularly good choice in the off-season to give yourself a break from riding and when the alternative is to be miserable in the cold or on a trainer. But, if you're an average person, you probably should concern yourself with overall health rather than cycling performance (IMO this is a far more important reason to lift).

In either case, stressing over what ROM to use in a squat is not likely to significantly affect your life one way or the other. The difference between quarter squatting and doing full squats is not going to make a massive difference in how much strength you gain. The effort and consistency you put in matter far, far more. Can you imagine a thread where someone decided to take up jogging to supplement his cycling and people argued about what stride length/frequency he should use to optimize his carry over to cycling?

When it comes to sports training in general, the stuff where you really want to get into detail about and debate is the stuff that is specific to your sport. So for cycling, that is the stuff you do on your bike (length and intensity of intervals, total mileage, how much time in each training zone, how this stuff all progresses over the season). That's the kind of thing we should have a multi-page thread about. For cycling, weight training is general in nature (on a powerlifting board a multi-page thread discussing squat technique makes perfect sense).

So by all means: lift. I will be doing it too. But don't stress over the small stuff in the gym. Stress over the small stuff on your bike.

Edit to add: holy crap that was long.

Last edited by OBoile; 10-12-17 at 01:50 PM.
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Old 10-12-17, 03:17 PM   #66
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Yeah, the final straw for me was an article about how Steph Curry could deadlift 400 lbs and was the 2nd strongest on the Warriors. Everyone (including Ripp) was saying they need to get stronger, despite the fact that this was immediately after a 67-win NBA championship season where Curry was the MVP. Clearly getting stronger wasn't that necessary. When I pointed this out, the reaction was somewhat unpleasant.

No doubt he'd read an article about how Froome can't bench 135 and say his coach must suck and how much better Froome would be doing starting strength with GOMAD. Oh, and the only conditioning Froome should be doing is HIIT work because some 6-week study on untrained college kids shows that it's better.
Ah, the untrained college kids study that seemingly 99% of weightlifting/strength training/power lifting "science" is based on. UGH! Ripp's books are good if you apply some common sense. *Never* read his posts on his forum. His horrid personality traits that come out occasionally in the book are ever present.

As for squats, after hurting my back about once every three months for years, I finally got smart in my mid-40s and switched to front squats. It's actually hard to use bad form on front squats as you'll drop the bar. I've done plenty of near max singles/doubles/triples with no ill effects. As for cycling carry-over, I cycle to get better in cycling. Step ups are actually probably the closest exercise to pedaling.
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Old 10-12-17, 03:49 PM   #67
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Just to be clear, I am a former powerlifter (albeit a fairly mediocre one - you can see me last contest here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wVsKnGcHPM). I squat regularly. I absolutely think people should be weight training. I just don't think you're going to see a massive improvement to your cycling, particularly compared to if you spent that time on the bike, from lifting weights.

If weight training actually improved an elite cyclist's performance by 6-10% over and above any other training choice (i.e. an effect similar to EPO) it wouldn't be considered as an afterthought like it currently is.
Did you look at the van Dieman training in @redlude97's post? 1/3 of weekly time weight training pre-season for a roadie? My guess is that it's a lot more common than most of us think. If it works for me w/o coach . . .

Nice total and very good form. Works for you, too. One little comment . . . the studies stress heavy weight training, i.e. max weight. You of course notice that the hardest part of a squat is coming up to a 90 knee angle. The point of 1/2 and 1/4 squatting is to use max weight in that range of motion because that's how one stimulates the muscles working through that particular ROM, thus conventional squatting has not been found to work for road cycling in the studies I've read.

This '04 meta-study: http://www.sportsci.org/jour/04/cdp.doc (downloads a .DOC file) found almost no improvement from "usual weights" which I believe has been the conventional wisdom and is still true.
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Old 10-12-17, 03:58 PM   #68
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Riding the day after squats is rough. People with flat bars kept passing me, saying "look at that slow-ass roadie, crying on his wonderbike!"
No kidding! Try Alpine skiing after squatting the previous evening. Not good. Day after is recovery, at least for me. I'll usually put in 30' of VT1 on my rollers after heavy legs. After my easy legs day I'll usually do an hour of that. OTOH riding before legs works fine, intervals, whatever. The idea is to get wasted anyway. The amount of weight doesn't actually matter other than to ego.
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Old 10-15-17, 10:27 AM   #69
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Here is an article on squat depths and pros and cons of each.


How Deep Should You Squat?
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Old 10-27-17, 12:47 PM   #70
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Hi all,
Just wondering if anyone more experienced with resistance training for cycling might have some knowledge they could throw at me here! I'm inclined to keep doing what I'm doing, but if I'm hurting my performance it would be nice to know.
No, I don't think you're hurting your performance. There is an issue that you are not duplicating the range of leg movement on the bike, but that issue is best addressed with plyometric exercises as well as explosiveness drills on the bike. No reason you should break form and risk injury.

If you're looking for some cyclists who seriously incorporate weight training into their training, look up Sir Chris Hoy's leg workouts, and try the Australian Olympic Track Cycling team weight workouts.

As for my personal experience and advice. I'm 63 and share some life learnings here. The weight room was part of my training as a track & field sprinter in HS and college. All of that was on machines. Machines were quite the rage back then, more scientific we were told, and less chance of injury. Resistance training was mostly done away from the competitive seasons (there is no off season). When I graduated college I shifted to cycling and maintained the same relationship with the machines. Most of the guys I knew did weights in winter and some were elites.

Most of my first bike racing career was as a road sprinter which, in addition to mileage, required me to spend 2-3 days a week with high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which to me seemed like weight room sets. In winter I'd also supplant weight work with running up a really nasty 200M hill. I believe those hills made me nasty strong. My coach believed it, too.

I got into free weights and squats in particular when some guys from my basketball league were competing on how many 200# reps they could do. They told me to stop when I reached 100. I weighed 132#. And I could not bench my weight. All I was was a pair of legs and a back attached to a skeleton. The weightlifting instructor at the gym took notice, after six weeks I was putting up stupid numbers on the squats, doing that Gold's Gym bar-bending thing, stopping the whole gym with 80% of the folks not believing I was doing it, and the remaining 20% wanting their plates back. All that, most likely from jump, 100M, 500M, 1K sprint intervals on the bike, as well as running those stinking hills.

Fast forward past 30 years of the couch potato life.

I spent the winter in the weight room before I ever put my bike on the road. I've begun to race at the velodrome. I'm not strong, but I am getting stronger and believe the weight room is helping. I have a teammate my age who just put down an awesome flying 200M time at worlds and he's in the weight room year around. Just not as frequently during competition season.

I highly recommend you rethink track racing. Weight training translates so very well to the track. For example, a hard acceleration from a standing-start is nothing more than a moving dead lift. And HIIT is just another way of doing sets and reps. HIIT is critical for track success, and it is something people get lazy and avoid when road training.

At my club in Chicago, most of the elites recommend starting on the track because you learn so much more there, and it makes you a much better road racer once you start that discipline. And even when I wasn't racing track, coaches had me riding my first 1,000 miles of the season on a fixie, usually with gears smaller than 70". A downhill run will get your spin going.

You can get into track racing pretty inexpensively, too. Most tracks have loaner or rental bikes for new riders. And its good to get to the track and have the staff there fit you to the right bike without having to buy one. At the tracks I see a lot of aluminum Felt TK3s, and Dolan TC1s -- both as loaner/rental bikes and as ones people own. They offer a bit of aero styling and a stiff frame in bikes you can buy around $750 US, street. Less used.

You can buy a practice fixie for even less. I have a steel Fuji that came with front and back brakes and water bottle cage mounts that I used for fixed-gear sprint practice on the road. Cost about $300. I highly recommend one even if you are just a roadie. At some tracks you can remove the brakes from these inexpensive "urban" fixies and race them on the track. Other tracks do not allow fixies with water bottle mounts, basically because the frame geometry is not suited for highly banked tracks. Once I got the bike fit down -- consulting with two track coaches and a pro bike fitter -- I went with the Dolan DF4 with blade front wheel, and disc back. I do sprint TTs. 200M flying, 500M and 2000M.

Rick

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Old 10-28-17, 07:06 AM   #71
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This is a good article that explains the history behind the faulty thinking that ass-to-grass squats are bad for the knees, but as the article shows ATG squats actually put less stress on connective tissue than the first 30 degrees or so of a squat. I do ATG, because it's only natural to exercise the whole range of body motion.

Very interesting article on the history of squatting: https://squatuniversity.com/2016/01/...for-the-knees/
In the above post I posted earlier, I said: "I do ATG, because it's only natural to exercise the whole range of body motion."

That is true, but I forgot to mention, that strong hamstrings are crucial to having healthy knees. Actually, it's the strength ratio between the hamstrings and the quads and if all one does are partial or half-squats they are not building up so much on their hamstrings. Furthermore, cycling is a quad-intensive exercise, meaning your quads are getting much stronger than you hams, which results in an imbalance.

If you get done with squat training or deadlifting and only feel the pain in your quads and not much in your posterior chain, then you're creating an imbalance. Years ago when I first started weight training, that's where the bulk of my pain was, in the quads and when I ran or rode a bike hard, again, all the pain was in the quads. No wonder why I developed problems with my knees.

Now that I know better, I've started working on doing full ATG squats and PROPER deadlifts and my knees are getting very strong and healthy, I can even run again without knee pain, I credit this to building up my hamstrings and glutes, which cannot be done with partial/half squats.

It does take some practice in doing ATG squats and you do have to drop the weight down quite a bit in the beginning (be ready to shelve your ego), but once you get the flexibility and strength it becomes natural.

Here some interesting reading on knee health... The Advantages of Strong Hamstrings | Chron.com

http://www.fix-knee-pain.com/blog/ne...hamstrings.pdf
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Old 10-30-17, 08:59 AM   #72
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I'll jump back into this thread to say that while I agree with full squats being the default choice, they aren't aren't a great hamstring exercise.
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/ha...for-the-squat/

FWIW, the site www.strongerbyscience.com has some terrific articles on squatting and lifting in general. Some other good ones:
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/fi...morning-squat/
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/ha...for-squat-2-0/
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/sq...ee-dominant-3/
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/hi...squatting-2-0/
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Old 10-31-17, 07:21 AM   #73
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I'll jump back into this thread to say that while I agree with full squats being the default choice, they aren't aren't a great hamstring exercise.
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/ha...for-the-squat/

FWIW, the site www.strongerbyscience.com has some terrific articles on squatting and lifting in general. Some other good ones:
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/fi...morning-squat/
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/ha...for-squat-2-0/
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/sq...ee-dominant-3/
https://www.strongerbyscience.com/hi...squatting-2-0/
I've read a good portion of your links and the author definitely knows what he's writing about; however, it's important to note that everything he's writing about WRT squats are all about lifting the heaviest possible weight -- and I agree with all his points.

However, I believe most of the rest of us need to know that the posterior chain is a much neglected muscular group that needs working. Even the author agrees with this based on some of these excerpts from your links; however, his point about relying on the quads for lifting the most weight possible is noted.


I believe a significant number of knee injuries/pain are from a weak posterior chain; that seems to be the case with me, since I've started building that area up, I can now run with zero knee pain, which was getting so bad I was considering putting an end to my running routines. I'm now think of new PR's.

So my whole point to the OP and others, is that: 1) the idea of deep squats being bad for the knees is completely wrong, they were a major part of this 53-y/o guy improving his knees (with other things, like dead-lifts, leg curls....) and 2) While I can't say if deep squats (and other exercises) will directly affect your cycling performance, it will positively affect your knee health (again in my experience), which allows me to cycle drug-free. The drug-free part is from my observations of older cyclist, many of which complain about knee pains and heavily use NSAIDs -- I don't use NSAIDs and plan to stay off them for as long as possible.

Quote:
"Training your quads will also increase your max more for the amount of effort you invest into the training. If you strengthen what’s already strong, you’ll probably be able to move more weight, but it’s a matter of diminishing returns. If you bring up the weakest link, you get a much much better return on investment.

Now, before anyone jumps down my throat for implying that training the “posterior chain” isn’t the be-all-end-all of lower body training, I do absolutely think it’s important. Most new lifters need more work on their posterior chains, and it should be prioritized to a point."








"As a powerlifter, I’m primarily concerned about lifting the most weight possible. I’m assuming that applies to many of you also. If so, purposefully aiming for high hamstrings involvement in the squat is counterproductive. Plain and simple.

I can somewhat understand the inclination to teach a more posterior-dominant squat to new lifters, especially if they’re using one of the many typical beginner routines which include high frequency, fairly high volume squatting with very little deadlifting or hamstring accessory work.

However, if that describes you, be warned: you are forming a bad habit you’ll have to break later! I personally think you should instead squat in a more efficient manner (either high or low bar, trying to maintain a more upright torso and prioritizing quad involvement), while also doing some accessory work for your hamstrings such as GHRs, hamstring curls, or RDLs since, like we’ve already established, the squat is NOT a good hamstring builder anyways!

Now, just to preempt a question I know will pop up – I am NOT saying you shouldn’t train your hamstrings. Strong hamstrings mean a big deadlift, healthy knees, and a potentially lower risk of hamstring tears. Just don’t use the squat to train your hamstrings. Use hamstrings exercises to train your hamstrings."

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Old 10-31-17, 07:37 AM   #74
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I've read a good portion of your links and the author definitely knows what he's writing about; however, it's important to note that everything he's writing about WRT squats are all about lifting the heaviest possible weight -- and I agree with all his points.

However, I believe most of the rest of us need to know that the posterior chain is a much neglected muscular group that needs working. Even the author agrees with this based on some of these excerpts from your links; however, his point about relying on the quads for lifting the most weight possible is noted.


I believe a significant number of knee injuries/pain are from a weak posterior chain; that seems to be the case with me, since I've started building that area up, I can now run with zero knee pain, which was getting so bad I was considering putting an end to my running routines. I'm now think of new PR's.

So my whole point to the OP and others, is that: 1) the idea of deep squats being bad for the knees is completely wrong, they were a major part of this 53-y/o guy improving his knees (with other things, like dead-lifts, leg curls....) and 2) While I can't say if deep squats (and other exercises) will directly affect your cycling performance, it will positively affect your knee health (again in my experience), which allows me to cycle drug-free. The drug-free part is from my observations of older cyclist, many of which complain about knee pains and heavily use NSAIDs -- I don't use NSAIDs and plan to stay off them for as long as possible.
I agree completely that deep squats are generally fine, and in many cases good, for your knees. I also agree that training your PC is important, particularly for cyclists who may have significant imbalances. My whole point was that you likely should be doing something else in addition to squats to accomplish this. Good mornings, Deadlifts, Romanian Deadlifts, Stiff-Legged Deadlifts, Back Raises (hyperextensions), reverse-hyperextensions and Glute-Ham Raises are all good options. Even leg curls can be an okay choice when combined with squats.
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Old 12-06-17, 07:30 PM   #75
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Here's why you should do full depth squats

Your legs are parallel to the ground on the toilet.

When you can't get up off the toilet anymore, you go live in an assisted living place.

You're going to lose muscle mass as you age. Start with more, and you'll end up with more for longer.

Squats are a functional exercise.
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