Percentages – How Your Squat Should Relate to Everything Else

Percentages – How Your Squat Should Relate to Everything Else
Written by: Coach Slater

A lot of really smart coaches, much smarter than us, believe that the squat has the greatest carryover to any other exercise. So, it’s no wonder that we’ve been focusing so much on squatting in our last two cycles. If your squat goes up, so do your other lifts.

In the late 70’s, Soviet coaches analyzed their lifters and found their back squat averaged 131% of their clean & jerk. Said another way, their clean & jerk would be 76% of their back squat. For you, we like to see the back squat be anywhere in the range of 125-135% of your clean & jerk. So, if the average male at DCCF has a 1RM back squat of 250, then he’d clean & jerk somewhere around 185-200. If the average female at DCCF has a 1RM back squat of 160, then she’d clean & jerk somewhere around 120-130. Your snatch should be anywhere in the range of 78-83% of your clean & jerk, so this same mythical male and female would snatch in the range of 150-160 and 95-105, respectfully.

So, what if you’re at the lower end of these percentages or even lower? If you want to increase your snatch and clean & jerk, then we need to increase your back squat. And how that’s done is by really focusing on creating tension (as we’ve written about before) and generating speed on the concentric (standing up) portion of the squat. But, you might have sub-optimal technique where increasing your squat won’t necessarily help your snatch or clean & jerk. That could mean incorrect movement patterns, slow speed of execution, poor flexibility, a fear of jumping under the bar, or other factors not strictly related to just strength. We recommend attending Skillz Class on Sundays at 10:30am.

If you’re at the higher end of these percentages, then you likely are told by coaches that you have great technique. You’re very efficient at converting your absolute strength into Olympic movements. You’re over-achieving and that’s great, but you might need to buckle down on eating more to fuel your strength gains. Or, you might just be a novice or intermediate lifter who hasn’t had the time to develop your strength. In that case, just give it time.

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