Step by Step Guide: Barbell Back Squat

Written by Megan Higginbotham

January 17, 2017

The squat is one of the best exercises that you can perform in the weight room. The barbell back squat is one of the best forms of squat for increasing muscle and endurance. Unfortunately, many people perform this incorrectly. When you perform this movement incorrectly, especially under high loads, you put yourself at risk for injury.

Below is a guide for progressing to a how to do correct barbell back squat:

Step 1

Wall Squats-While facing the wall set your core, push your hips back while pushing your knees out. Make sure to lower slowly focusing on the key aspects of the squat. This will open up the hip ensuring that you have proper mobility. As you gain mobility move closer to the wall

Step 2

High Box Goblet Squat– Before the movement begins the athlete should brace the core. After the athlete has a good brace create torque from the ground up, hip hinge back cueing the athlete to try and reach as far back on the box as possible with the glute.

Step 3

Parallel Goblet Squat- All cues listed above with the added range of motion to the movement. Again cue the athlete to keep a good brace, push the knees out, keep the chest up while increasing the range of motion.

Step 4

Goblet squat- Complete the range of motion

Step 5

Double Kettlebell Squat- Move the athlete to a more unstable environment making them brace with their core and also increasing mobility. All cues listed above should be used in this movement as well.

Step 6

High Box barbell squat- Start with bracing, setting the bar to the traps, grabbing the bar in a comfortable position and driving the elbows down the ground. Really focus on glute activation as you sit back on the box .

Step 7

Parallel Box Squat-  Start with little to no weight, progress weight when form is PERFECT!

Step 8

Back Squat- Full range of motion


Learn more about how to perform a basic squat here.


Until next time- enjoy your squat.


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1 Comment

  1. Enrique Pasion

    These are very helpful tips and suggestions on how to properly execute a Barbell Back Squat to get maximal fitness and workout results.


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