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Kettlebell Goblet Squat with Competition Kettlebell

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Sebastien

Level 1 Valued Member
Hi Strong First Community,

I am currently transitioning from the Timeless Simple challenge to the Timed Simple challenge from the Pavel Tsatsouline S&S programme. For the warm-up, Pavel suggests to replace Prying Goblet Squats with Weighted Goblet Squats. His advice is to aim to use the same weight as one uses for the one-arm swing.

As I am using competition style kettlebells, I find myself struggling to find a good grip because of the short handles. I end up supporting the bell partly with my chest pushing elbows inwards and squatting with slightly rounded shoulders.

Possible solutions :
  • I found one video suggesting the rounded shoulders may not be an issue, but they keep the bell away from the chest. .
  • I found another video that suggest an alternative, but complicated way, to set up the exercise :
Any advice on tackling this ?

Thank you so much for your support, the S&S programme and Strong First community is really helping me keeping sane during this pandemic.
 

Bauer

Level 7 Valued Member
I do it similarly to the guy in the 2nd video, bottom up goblet hold. Sometimes I hike the bell with one hand. Sometimes I use both hands in a pistol grip, clean the bell up and catch it with both hands.
 

Eyetic

Level 5 Valued Member
Maybe using a towel instead of the grips? its going to be extra hard on your grip but I believe it could be easier
 

barrak

Level 6 Valued Member
Hi Strong First Community,

I am currently transitioning from the Timeless Simple challenge to the Timed Simple challenge from the Pavel Tsatsouline S&S programme. For the warm-up, Pavel suggests to replace Prying Goblet Squats with Weighted Goblet Squats. His advice is to aim to use the same weight as one uses for the one-arm swing.

As I am using competition style kettlebells, I find myself struggling to find a good grip because of the short handles. I end up supporting the bell partly with my chest pushing elbows inwards and squatting with slightly rounded shoulders.

Possible solutions :
  • I found one video suggesting the rounded shoulders may not be an issue, but they keep the bell away from the chest. .
  • I found another video that suggest an alternative, but complicated way, to set up the exercise :
Any advice on tackling this ?

Thank you so much for your support, the S&S programme and Strong First community is really helping me keeping sane during this pandemic.

I'm not at all happy with goblet squats, as they never helped in correcting my hunched posture... In fact they tolerated it and might even contributed to it. I now do double front squats coupled with frog stretches/OS resets instead.

Since the prying part is not part of the movement beyond Simple, then why not just do front squats... single or double? Much easier with heavy comp bells than goblet squats as you found out.
 

Daniel Vintila

Level 6 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
The way of the second video is a good way to perform it. I use that with my clients especially in the beginning to learn how to engage their lats.
 

Sebastien

Level 1 Valued Member
I do it similarly to the guy in the 2nd video, bottom up goblet hold. Sometimes I hike the bell with one hand. Sometimes I use both hands in a pistol grip, clean the bell up and catch it with both hands.
I am not sure a one hand hike like the second video is something I would consider @ warm-up stage. But I like the idea of the two hands pistol grip and may give that a try !
 

Daniel Vintila

Level 6 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
Hi Daniel. Would you say it is OK to support the bell with your chest for this exercise?
I would suggest not to. If you're trying to push your chest out too much you will lost some tightness in your mid-section and you'll end up leaning back and putting a bit of stress on your lower back. Try to support the kb with your arms by keeping your forearms almost vertical and your elbows tucked in.
Let me know if that makes sense and if not just pm me and I will help you with the technique, no worries.
 

barrak

Level 6 Valued Member
Horizontal pull ups is what works pretty well for me.

Thanks... I'm doing a full suite of daily posture correction exercises that are steadily paying dividend. I believe what you suggested is useful for someone who's not doing heavy swings or similar exercises.
 

watchnerd

Level 8 Valued Member
Hi Strong First Community,

I am currently transitioning from the Timeless Simple challenge to the Timed Simple challenge from the Pavel Tsatsouline S&S programme. For the warm-up, Pavel suggests to replace Prying Goblet Squats with Weighted Goblet Squats. His advice is to aim to use the same weight as one uses for the one-arm swing.

As I am using competition style kettlebells, I find myself struggling to find a good grip because of the short handles. I end up supporting the bell partly with my chest pushing elbows inwards and squatting with slightly rounded shoulders.

Possible solutions :
  • I found one video suggesting the rounded shoulders may not be an issue, but they keep the bell away from the chest. .
  • I found another video that suggest an alternative, but complicated way, to set up the exercise :
Any advice on tackling this ?

Thank you so much for your support, the S&S programme and Strong First community is really helping me keeping sane during this pandemic.

All my bells are comp bells.

I do goblet squats and halos holding the bell upside down by the horns.
 
I'm not at all happy with goblet squats, as they never helped in correcting my hunched posture... In fact they tolerated it and might even contributed to it.
This is almost always correctable. Video would help. The original cues were, “big chest” and “Buddha belly.”

-S-
 

barrak

Level 6 Valued Member
This is almost always correctable. Video would help. The original cues were, “big chest” and “Buddha belly.”

-S-
Thanks Steve! I have since come along way in my t-spine mobility and correction. Back then, while I could do goblet squats, front squats were a no go... the bell would just spill over. That's how badly contorted my upper body was. I haven't tried goblet squats recently, but double front squats are now smooth and loadable and I can even do light SOTS presses.
 

Aberneuten

First Post
I do something like the guy in the bottom video. But my question is, how does anyone do the curl part of the prying goblet squat with heavier competition kettlebells? It seems much more difficult even with the 24kg than doing it with the hard style kettlebells.
 

Adam R Mundorf

Level 6 Valued Member
I do something like the guy in the bottom video. But my question is, how does anyone do the curl part of the prying goblet squat with heavier competition kettlebells? It seems much more difficult even with the 24kg than doing it with the hard style kettlebells.
The curl is optional and a form of prying. It's there to increase mobility. Once you get to heavier weights, curling in my opinion takes away from the exercise and turns it into something else.
 

watchnerd

Level 8 Valued Member
I do something like the guy in the bottom video. But my question is, how does anyone do the curl part of the prying goblet squat with heavier competition kettlebells? It seems much more difficult even with the 24kg than doing it with the hard style kettlebells.

I don't find it to be an issue.

But if I want to squat 'for real' and load it heavy, I don't do goblets.

I treat the goblet squat as a movement practice / mobility exercise.

In KB land, when I want to squat as a resistance exercise for sets/reps, I hold the KB(s) in the rack.
 

Snake River Jim

Level 3 Valued Member
Hold the bell upside down. I personally like an easy set with the barbell for a warmup. Something you could do every day like 5 reps with 135 lbs. makes the swings feel easy.
 

Manuel Fortin

Level 6 Valued Member
I may be in the minority here, but I use comp kettlebells and do goblet squats with the handle up. Yes, it's challenging, but that's the point for what I do. I use the goblet squat for mobility (in which case a heavy weight does not matter much) and as an easy strength carry movement for the upper body. I found great transfer from the second part to everyday life when you carry heavy-ish stuff (buckets, boxes). As to tips, here is what worked for me:
1 - I touch the chest at the top, but try not to use it too much for support, as this would detract from the strength aspect of the movement. When I go down, the bell naturally exerts much less force on the chest, and eventually leaves it entirely.
2 - I use a weight that allows me to keep a somewhat neutral shoulder position. If you get too hunched up, then reduce the weight. It used to be that S&S prescribed the use of working weight for the goblet squat. I don't know if that is the case, but who cares? Use one bell down and practice good technique. You will get stronger and eventually will move up in weight.
3 - Sets of 5 are fine, but if you can only do sets of 3 at the larger weight with good technique when you increase weith, then do sets of 3. Eventually, you will get to sets of 5. As detailed below, I mostly go by feel. When the set gets too hard, I stop it.

For what it's worth, my go to squat had been for the last 3 year, up to a few months ago the goblet squat. 1 set (yes, just one) of 3-5 reps during the warmup. This was all very informal. I chose a kettlebell, depending on how I felt, and did a "reasonable" number of squats. For example, in the same week I could use 24, 32 and 40kg, depending on how I felt and do sets of 3-5. I also did 2-3 months of double kettlebell front squats twice a week once a year, but that's it ( with 24 kg in one hand, and 16 in the other). Of course, I did other things, mainly snatches and tennis, but no other squats. Doing this very easy squatting got me to being able to do easy sets of 5 with 40kg as part of my warmup. Also, during tennis season I almost stopped the squats entirely, doing them about once a week.

If you want to load the squat so that it becomes a strength exercise for the lower body, you will have eventually to find another squat. This winter I experimented with the barbell Zercher squat, and I really like it. It's much easier on the upper body because of the leverage, so you can use a heavier load. I just keep on using a similar pattern. 4-6 days a week, I do 1-2 sets of 3-5 Zercher squats as part of the warmup. All easy. It's the warmup. Also, I am rehabbing a groin injury, and it's really helping. I use 135 pounds now, so it's very light. Started at 115, so not much more than my 40kg goblets. I have no idea what my max. Maybe when my injury is fully healed, I will give a max a go, but that's not my ultimate goal. The goal is to nudge the weight up slowly. We'll see how it goes. If in a year I can do two sets of 5 with 165, 185 or maybe more as a warmup, then I got stronger. My goal is not to increase limit strength as much as possible, so this is probably not the best approach if that's what you want. However, for the investment in time (less than 30 seconds a day a few times each week with the 1 set of goblet squats), I find the returns are hard to beat. I started having trouble doing a set of 5 with 24 kg, and now sets of 5 with the 40 are easy. It took 3 years and I'm not winning any competition, but when times comes to move heavy stuff around, it's easy and I am less likely to get injured.
 
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