Squatting And Elbow Position

One of the most pivotal points of interest when assessing the barbell back squat should be the position and intent of the elbows. Granted, this is once we've mastered the basics. But that being said, the position of a litter's elbows (which indicates position and intent of their shoulders) can be a make-or-break technicality that separates a good squatter from a great squatter.

There’s no “best way” to squat, but considerations in the size of the lifter's torso and strength of the lifters back should help establish an 
elbow position that would compliment the lifters squat based on their structure and function.

Smaller, narrower squatters with less depth across their torso might find themselves favoring a more extended or horizontal elbow position, this is due to the fact that they simply need to create a "shelf" for the bar to rest.

Where lifters with larger, upper-backs could benefit from keeping their elbows down or more "vertically" aligned with the bar, the issue often occurs where larger lifters lack the requisite mobility to get into external rotation of the shoulders to allow for the elbows to point in that direction.

This is a general thought process and not a hard and fast truth for every lifter, the big takeaway should be that elbow position matters, and we must be mindful of it as a coach in order to maximize technique specific to each lifter we work with.

Stay Strong,