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the main reason for recommending that was so that you could continue squatting as you worked on mobility. however, i’ve heard proper depth is at least to horizontal/90 deg, or at least just below it and that’s good enough. can you make that depth with good back form and no butt wink?
perhaps i interpreted incorrectly but i was guessing that you were trying for the deep squat with barbell which is where additional mobility work is typically needed.
here is a discussion on posterior chain and the squat in this article:
in all the stuff i’ve read – it seems that you need both quads and posterior chain to really perform a squat properly in any situation. if you’re above horiz, you’ll still need both your quads and glutes/hams to straighten up. that doesn’t mean you may not have a poor movement pattern – for example, most people have glute activation problems and are quad dominant, and thus overwork their quads in every lift (and prob hate the DL because of that!)
re: Calif Strength video – i love the site, and the videos i really like are the snatch and clean progressions. unfortunately there is only one squat video there.
they are a classic training shop for oly lifting it seems. the snatch and clean progressions were the ones they taught us at CF Level 1 training. i wish they did a squat progression.
yes MWOD wants to drive for straight feet. but the reality is that most oly lifters angle their toes out a few degrees – and remember, they also wear non-flat shoes – to give them a bit more advantage over their natural mobility for making a huge lift. even Kstarr will say that a few degrees out is still OK, even if straight feet generates the most torque. but if you go too far out then all that torque disappears.
i looked at the video again and i think his shins are vertical and thus his knees are in the right place. i am not exactly sure on his pelvis vs. femur capability so it is entirely possible that he could squat and not butt wink with his feet at that width. (jealous!) if that is so, then his knees will also be closer together than what you might see with people who squat in the MWOD style.
the head is one i’m not gonna touch- i think if you go on t-nation you’ll find some good discussion on proper head position for squat and it could vary on preference or style, and if the weight is heavy you may find the head looking up to help keep you back in the right shape.