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So I did the FMS test. The close grip overhead squat was very difficult. During the second phase were you elevated the heels I had perfect form with no restriction! I could even squat twice as low as my air squat. It was only about a 2 in elevation.
So, it points ‘strongly’ towards ankle restriction. Does that mean there are people who couldn’t even get into that position if their hips were an issue?
Actually I am going to go out on a limb and theorize that mostly anybody with their heels raised will be able to squat down. I know some people with very tight hips that can easily get in squat position with raised heels.
As a guy who went through FMS level 1 and 2, i can say that people can fail the squat test even with heels raised. Even giving that much slack into their system isn’t enough because of more severe problems in the hips/legs/ankles or other problems elsewhere like in the t-spine and shoulders. Also remember the FMS squat test also tests holding the pole overhead in proper position as well and not just the ability to get your ass to heels.
David Shen, layin’ down wisdom FMS style.
Yeah, Daniel, if the hip (or t-spine, etc) restrictions in squatting are significant enough then the individual could indeed find themselves unable to squat properly with the heel raised. They still might be able to squat down in a general sense, but lack many of the indicators of quality that we’re looking for in a strength and conditioning environment, like midline stability (flat lower back, braced core, etc).
It could, of course, have a lot to do with motor control issues in the squat, which is a big part of what the FMS is screening. You give some general guidelines on how to perform the screen, but the movements are not coached. I believe what would constitute a score of “1” on the FMS, which means the movement is not suitable to be trained, would be failure to keep the angle of the trunk and arms parallel to the shins throughout the range of motion, which would be what happened if the back rounded.
With the FMS deep squat screen you also have to consider overhead mobility as well, so interpreting the screen results involves comparing the movements in the screen for overarching issues. So, if someone failed both their deep squat AND shoulder mobility screens (scored a 0 – pain, or a 1 – super lousy movement), you might find fixing one aids the other.
Absolutely — and thanks for your responses.
Yeah, it’s not often considered that having the heels raised can help bypass hip ROM issues as well to a degree.