High Rep Squats for Leg Drive on Deadlifts

Posted on 12 Nov 2014 22:41


I have a tendency to get de-trained very very easily. I'm not talking about the aesthetic nature of this, because that can happen to me in 10 days of not training. I am instead referring to actual performance. If I have a big gap between training my legs and performing deadlifts, I tend to lose some of that leg drive.

Eric has a way for me to maintain that strength off the floor: high rep squats.

You can click HERE for my routine but the general gist of it is:

Friday: Deadlifts
Saturday: Shoulders / Chest + Back + Biceps
Sunday: Legs + Triceps
Tuesday: Back + Traps

So as you can see there is a big gap between Sunday's leg workout and Friday's heavy deadlifts. Now keep in mind that my leg workout consists of high volume reverse lunges, split squats and cable pullthroughs. This means that I am plenty sore. So what Eric has me doing now is 2 sets of 12-20 reps of either Back Squats or Leg Squats (depending on how I feel) on Back Day (Tuesday). The load and intensity is variable and I am playing around with this but doing the high rep squats has helped me get that "pop" off the floor on Deadlifts.

I am attaching a video of my most recent Back workout in which you can see me doing these high rep squats. I understand that for some people these may seem high and it is because of the angle of the camera: the recording has been taken from an elevated height behind me. So you can feel free to click HERE for last week's workout where the camera was at my normal side angle.

This is my normal depth on back squats:


As a side note, I want to mention that if I ever get time after Deadlifts, I will probably do 1-2
high rep squat sets then as well. I think they are a great exercise to hone in that leg drive off the floor. Something to keep in mind is that this takes some experimentation to get used to and to make it work for you.

For example, sometimes I go into the gym on Deadlift day feeling terribly sore because of the high rep squats but despite the apparent soreness I have zero trouble when it comes to performance. Sometimes soreness means performance will also suffer. And conversely, lack of soreness can be a good thing and sometimes it can backfire where the legs just don't help lift the weight. So be cautious with the high rep squats should you decide to do them but whatever you do, be prepared to experiment with the load, intensity and volume.

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