Front squatting is the most functional means of barbell squatting inside the gym, accordingly to my eighteen years of training. Muscle physiology support this!
Front squat form uses the same muscles are a back squat of course. A close-chain exercise where the barbell is loaded at the very top point of our anatomy demands this physiology. But, the front squat is supreme because of which muscles are under tension because of the unique rack position.
We work the major muscles of the legs, hips upper core and glute, of course. Secondarily, we work deep muscles within the abdominals such as internal obliques – which assist in the counter-rotation of the torque of the bar, – and erector spinae inside the lower T spine and lumbar regions – whose tightening allow for a bracing maneuver at the eccentric to concentric finish.
Front squat form, when emphasized, promotes better form and a new plumb line at the bottom means better posture and more recruitment in the upper body and the strengthening of the lower back!
Trust me, over the many years I have scores of experiences trainees not with poor lower back function and immobility which is very common, but weak erector spinae flexors and dysfunctional hip extensors – front squat forms do solve this.
Of course, the use of front squatting post-injury means you’ve done lots of work to rehab your body. This includes PT prescription or strength coaching where rehab is key! Your three phases of rebuilding are at play to strengthen around a wounded articulation(s) and only after, can you think about serious compound movements.
As part of this workout, we also introduce SSC, plyometrics and power movement. We perform:
Let’s do it
Baustista, David, et al., “A Comparison of Muscle Activation Among the Front Squat, Overhead Squat, Back Extension and Plank” (2020) Int J Exerc Sci. 13(1): 714–722.