The Strong Case For The Front Squat

The Strong Case Against It, Too

Geoffrey Verity Schofield
4 min readMar 27, 2021

Picture a barbell squat in your mind. You walk up to the bar, the heavy load resting on either side of it taunting you. You take a deep breath, get under the bar, position it carefully, brace your core hard and lift it out of the rack.

Where is the bar?

Typically speaking, it’s on your upper traps, or a “high bar” back squat position.

Some people prefer a “low bar” position, where the bar is a bit further down on the rear delts, and the torso is more inclined.

But how many of you envisioned the bar resting on the front delt?

Front squat, High Bar, Low Bar

Well, uh…probably a lot because you’ve already read the title, but without that, the vast majority of people will default to thinking about a barbell squat as being a back squat of some variety.

That’s a shame, because the front squat is a beast of a movement.

The Advantages of Front Squatting

First, it’s a hell of a core exercise. Because the bar is further forward on the body, it increases the moment arm for the spinal erectors, particularly the upper back. This also increases the demands on the abdominals in order to “brace” the core, particularly the transverse abdominis.