VIDEO: New Squat Cue For Improved Stability & Position

We hear lots about using the glutes in the squat and also about screwing the feet into the floor (which is all great stuff, although too often done incorrectly), but we don't often hear about actively using the adductors (the muscles on the inside of your legs) to create more stability. 

I'm not sure why that is.

In my experience, learning how to use the adductors can really help tighten up the bottom position in the squat, give the lifter more control, and make coming up out of the bottom easier.

If you have trouble avoiding 'butt-wink', if you tip forward on the way up, or if you find it hard to keep a solid, perfect position in your squat, try this technique. It may help you.

It's a subtle change, but for many people I've worked with, it makes a positive difference.


The keys here are:

  1. Maintain your tripod foot. The foot needs to actively stay anchored to the ground, with the heel, big toe and little toe maintaining roughly even weight. If you do this incorrectly, you'll shift more weight toward the inside of the foot instead of maintaining even weight between the tripod structure.
  2. While keeping the foot stable, pull the feet - and especially the heels - together as hard as you can.
  3. Squeeze the glutes hard on the way up, as normal.


To master this and get more consistent, I suggest starting by practicing this technique with sets of 10-15 goblet squats at a moderate weight. Do a few sets in your warm-up. 

Then try to apply the technique to your heavier squats (front or back squats) with tempo squats (with a 4-6sec lowering phase) or with paused squats (with a 2-4sec pause in the bottom of your squat). The tempo or paused variations will force you to lower the load slightly, and will make you slow things down. That way you'll be able to focus more on body control and achieving maximum tension with this technique. It will take some practice to become a natural and automatic part of your squat.


Need more help with your squat?

Download the extremely detailed Back Squat Manual that I wrote with fellow Quantum CrossFit coach and champion Powerlifter Alastair MacNicol. It comes with tons of videos and photos. Click here.

If you have any questions, think you might be doing this wrong, or you're not 100% clear on any aspect of this movement cue, reach out and send me an email.