November 6, 2009, Newsletter Issue #402: Squat to Barbell Press

Tip of the Week

The Squat to Press is a wonderfully difficult exercise.  Oh is it ever.  It can either be done with a straight bar gripped by both hands, or with free weights in each hand.  I am going to describe how to do this holding a straight bar/barbell, which is generally easier than free weights.  This will work your quads and glutes real well, as well as your arms and shoulders.  Plus, your abdomen and low-back will have to function in the movement, so it is a great total-body exercise.
Grab a bar that you can hold at chest level pretty easily.  Your grip (once weight is resting at the top of your chest) should have your palms facing forward, not towards you.  Hold the weight at chest level as you Squat (review earlier 'Squat' Blog post, 12/1/2008), not allowing it to fall from the top of the chest.  Keep your hips back as you squat with feet hip-width apart and straight forward. On the ascent from the squat, begin to press the weight above your head, allowing momentum to help with the shoulder press of the barbell.  Hold arms straight for a brief moment, then bring the weight back down to the top of your chest.  Repeat for desired reps.
This exercise is best done with many reprtitions, for great results throughout the body will be gained because this is a tough exercise.  Try and stay away from doing only 3-4 repetitons on this exercise, and if you are struggling to do more reps then lower the weight - you'll still look cool while you workout  :-)

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