Squats and Deads, What's missing?

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KPj
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Post by KPj » Thu Oct 09, 2008 4:08 am

Stephen Johnson wrote: Does that mean that leg curls are counterproductive in training the hamstrings? I've done stability ball leg curls, but I can't do them with more than bodyweight. And without an apparatus, glute ham raises are a bit of a challenge.
Well, in short, yes. Here's the question getting asked and answered from Cressey on his blog...

http://ericcressey.blogspot.com/2007/03 ... nkers.html

(i just noticed the title of that blog post - quite bizarre / extreme!)

The only benefit in them is hypertrophy - a lot of BB's swear by them. The glutes and hams should work together so it's counterproductive in that sense. But really, if you've got you're big money exercises covered, which i know obviously you do, then leg curls alone aren't going to do you any harm.

The problem really is when you take someone with weak glutes, in anterior tilt, and therefore the hammies are basically the only muscles left to extend the hips. So leg curls just enforce the imbalance of weak glutes and overactive hamstrings. So it's not a case of "if you do leg curls you will get injured!". It's more a case of 'if you have issues, then you go and do leg curls regularly, then you'll make those issues worse."

In terms of strength, I believe they have no carryover at all. Certainly not in my experience and not as far as i've read. But obviously not everyone cares about that.

For GHR's - do you have access to a lat pull down? YOu can kneel on that with your heels under the pads, facing away from it, and lower yourself that way. Quite brutal at first but limited in the long run. You just need to find someting to hook you're heels under.

With stability ball leg curls, all you can really do is go to the single leg version to make it harder. I tend to do these type of exercises after DL's, box squats and the likes so the hammies are just about done...Makes these exercises harder...

KPj


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Post by pdellorto » Thu Oct 09, 2008 8:13 am

Some of the guys at my gym do floor GHRs, with only a pad for their knees and their feet hooked under a heavy & secure bench.

The other alternative is a partner. We used to do partner GHRs sometimes in my MMA classes in Japan.

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Post by Blue Running Man » Thu Oct 09, 2008 11:51 am

Thanks KPj, it's clear to me now!

Glute ham raises are no joke! I gave them a whirl for the first time in about 4 years the other day, I could only do negatives! Of course, It was after heavy squats.

That's actually what inspired me to make this thread.

I don't really like the load placement in GHR's. It seems like it would be more "functional" to have the load placed on the feet. Since that's where the load is when we are walking/running.

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Post by Stephen Johnson » Thu Oct 09, 2008 12:40 pm

KPj wrote:
Stephen Johnson wrote: Does that mean that leg curls are counterproductive in training the hamstrings? I've done stability ball leg curls, but I can't do them with more than bodyweight. And without an apparatus, glute ham raises are a bit of a challenge.
Well, in short, yes. Here's the question getting asked and answered from Cressey on his blog...

http://ericcressey.blogspot.com/2007/03 ... nkers.html

(i just noticed the title of that blog post - quite bizarre / extreme!)

The only benefit in them is hypertrophy - a lot of BB's swear by them. The glutes and hams should work together so it's counterproductive in that sense. But really, if you've got you're big money exercises covered, which i know obviously you do, then leg curls alone aren't going to do you any harm.
Thanks for the reply. Weak glutes aren't an issue with me. Tight glutes (and hamstrings), unfortunately are. :sad:

For a number of years I've been training hamstrings primarily by hip extension exercises like Romanian/stiff leg deadlifts, only throwing a couple of sets of leg curls afterward. But I then began to notice that the amount of weight that I could leg curl was less than half of my leg extension. Since then, I've been working at getting the ratio down to 3:2 quads:hamstrings.

Of course, since machines are involved, it's hard to tell how much weight is really being moved. By comparison, I can Romanian deadlift freeweights that are fairly close to what I can back squat.

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Post by Peter Rouse » Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:52 am

My original post was directed towards a dead beginner looking for fat loss/

The 8 movement patterns mentioned are fundamental patterns that need to performed to create structural balance from the start for a beginner.

Yes a lunge can be knee dominant, the back leg performing knee extension under load, just depends on how you perform the movement. This is a knee extension in closed chain.

The knee flexion is initially performed to aid in knee stability for a beginner and I would use the slide board leg curl. Although a open chain movement, the movement requires glute firing in the pattern therefore maintaining and/or retraining the correct firing pattern. A progression would be then move to the reverse leg curl (a modified glute ham) which is closed chain.

Maybe you guys should go back and read the entire post in the context in which it was written.


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Post by Jungledoc » Sat Dec 20, 2008 9:08 pm

I"m really glad that this thread has been revived. I've re-read the whole thread, and am trying to understand the arguments offered. Also, Peter, thank you for joining and contributing to this. The relationship between hip movements and knee movements is complex, but I think it is important to understand it correctly.

Here's my question for Peter, or anyone who cares to jump in. What muscles that are involved in isolated knee extension (i.e. machine leg extensions) are NOT involved in squat variations? Conversely, what muscles used in isolated knee flexion (i.e. curls) are not trained by DL and variations?

Just to be clear, Peter, I think you are saying that a beginner/untrained individual needs to do the isolated knee work initially only, but within a time no longer gets additional benefit from these are is not derived from the compound movements. Do I read that correctly?

If that's the case, the answer (at least Peter's answer) to the original post is that for an untrained person, yes there is something missing if he/she is just doing squats and DL, but for the more advanced lifter those are adequate.

I suspect that is actually how many of us started, whether for good reasons or just out of ingorance. I used machines almost exclusively for the first year I was training, just because it looked easier and simpler to do, and I had a nice machine available to me. So I had already been training knee flexion and extension in isolation before I ever started squatting or DLing.

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Post by Matt Z » Sat Dec 20, 2008 10:56 pm

"What muscles that are involved in isolated knee extension (i.e. machine leg extensions) are NOT involved in squat variations?" - Jungledoc

None

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Post by Peter Rouse » Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:30 pm

Jungledoc wrote:I"m really glad that this thread has been revived. I've re-read the whole thread, and am trying to understand the arguments offered. Also, Peter, thank you for joining and contributing to this. The relationship between hip movements and knee movements is complex, but I think it is important to understand it correctly.

Here's my question for Peter, or anyone who cares to jump in. What muscles that are involved in isolated knee extension (i.e. machine leg extensions) are NOT involved in squat variations? Conversely, what muscles used in isolated knee flexion (i.e. curls) are not trained by DL and variations?

Just to be clear, Peter, I think you are saying that a beginner/untrained individual needs to do the isolated knee work initially only, but within a time no longer gets additional benefit from these are is not derived from the compound movements. Do I read that correctly?

If that's the case, the answer (at least Peter's answer) to the original post is that for an untrained person, yes there is something missing if he/she is just doing squats and DL, but for the more advanced lifter those are adequate.

I suspect that is actually how many of us started, whether for good reasons or just out of ingorance. I used machines almost exclusively for the first year I was training, just because it looked easier and simpler to do, and I had a nice machine available to me. So I had already been training knee flexion and extension in isolation before I ever started squatting or DLing.
Now when I say knee dominant extension/flexion I am not referring to leg extension or the leg curl.... these I would NEVER use.

People need to stop thinking muscles when training and think movement. A knee extension dominant lunge is a totally different movement pattern than a squat pattern requiring a whole different set of movement skills that will carry over in other areas.

Now with the other persons post on what muscles are worked that are different.... well how many nerve interventions do the hamstring complex have?

The Hamstrings (if you want to talk individual muscles) are capable of producing movement at the hip (extension) while producing no movement at the knee (stabilization) but they are also capable of producing no movement at the hip (stabilization) while producing movement at the knee (movement). So what does this mean? It means they require a totally different recruitment pattern for each movement.

As far as the back squat, the only people I do this with are power lifters whole require the movement for their sport. I do use the squat pattern as a progression for relearning the pattern (most people have lost this ability) but once a load is reached I drop it.

For quad dominant movement I use the following

Bulgarian Squats
Step Ups
Single Leg Squats (and variations)
Front Squat (mostly as an assisting exercise for the clean)

I know some of this may go against main stream thoughts or may even match some or your own ideas but we all need to have open minds when looking and much of what we have been sold as being gospel.

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Post by Matt Z » Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:52 pm

What are you training people for?

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Post by Jungledoc » Sun Dec 21, 2008 10:10 pm

Peter Rouse wrote:Now with the other persons post on what muscles are worked that are different.... well how many nerve interventions do the hamstring complex have?
No other person. Matt was quoting me.

So, yeah, how many? I may have known this 28 years when I took gross anatomy in med school, but I haven't thought about it since. Now I'm interested. I assume 1 per muscle belly for each of the 4 bellies of the hamstrings. Right? More?

Yes, for training, think movement, not individual muscles. Everybody who has posted on this thread believes that (well, I don't know about the OP). But to understand how the movements are achieved, you have to understand at least a little something about the muscles, and (at least by implication) the innervation. When we talk muscles, we often talk of the hamstrings as though they were a single muscle (and same for the quads) when in fact there are 4. 3 of the 4 hamstrings are biarticulate (crossing both the hip and knee joints) and 1 of the 4 quads is biarticulate. Each of those muscles has it's own input from the nervous system.

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Post by Peter Rouse » Tue Dec 23, 2008 12:52 am

Jungledoc wrote:
Peter Rouse wrote:Now with the other persons post on what muscles are worked that are different.... well how many nerve interventions do the hamstring complex have?
No other person. Matt was quoting me.

So, yeah, how many? I may have known this 28 years when I took gross anatomy in med school, but I haven't thought about it since. Now I'm interested. I assume 1 per muscle belly for each of the 4 bellies of the hamstrings. Right? More?

Yes, for training, think movement, not individual muscles. Everybody who has posted on this thread believes that (well, I don't know about the OP). But to understand how the movements are achieved, you have to understand at least a little something about the muscles, and (at least by implication) the innervation. When we talk muscles, we often talk of the hamstrings as though they were a single muscle (and same for the quads) when in fact there are 4. 3 of the 4 hamstrings are biarticulate (crossing both the hip and knee joints) and 1 of the 4 quads is biarticulate. Each of those muscles has it's own input from the nervous system.
You may want to go back to your notes from 25 years ago as this will give you the answer you are looking for, and no it is not one for each of the 4 muscle bellies. This will also tell you the movement that the "hamstrings" are capable of producing.

You also need to consider the involvement of the gastrocnemius in knee flexion as the gastrocnemius produces knee flexion and ankle plantaflexion.

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Post by Ironman » Tue Dec 23, 2008 4:54 am

I think it's just 2, but one of them is the sciatic which is a big one that controls the back of your lower leg and foot. Or at least all the nerves that branch off from it do. It goes up to the lower back. All the muscles are pretty much connected too, in whats called the posterior chain going from head to foot down the back. That's why the deadlift hits just about everything on the back half of your body.

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Post by Peter Rouse » Tue Dec 23, 2008 4:04 pm

Ironman wrote:I think it's just 2, but one of them is the sciatic which is a big one that controls the back of your lower leg and foot. Or at least all the nerves that branch off from it do. It goes up to the lower back. All the muscles are pretty much connected too, in whats called the posterior chain going from head to foot down the back. That's why the deadlift hits just about everything on the back half of your body.
You are a little off what we are talking about

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Post by Ironman » Wed Dec 24, 2008 4:53 am

Oh, I thought you were talking about the nerves in the hamstring. And then about reasons for what the gastrocs have to do with hip flexion. It kinda looks like that. I guess I was mistaken.

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Post by Jungledoc » Wed Dec 24, 2008 6:02 am

The tradition on this forum is to share information, not to be cryptic and socratic. Pity, Peter. You obviously have a lot of knowledge to share. Why not just share it?


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