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3 Attempts at 15 Bodyweight Overhead Squats

9
Dec

3 Attempts at 15 Bodyweight Overhead Squats

Take three attempts to perform 15 bodyweight overhead squats. 

The Overhead Squat article published in the August 2005 CrossFit Journal gives an excellent overview of the movement and its worth.

The Overhead Squat article published in the August 2005 CrossFit Journal gives an excellent overview of the movement and its worth.


I remember the day clearly. I was standing in a local gym in Boulder, with one of those padded straight weighted bars over my head (you know, the ones that are labeled with colorful numbers from 10lbs through 70lbs) trying to overhead squat. The width of the bar was a little short but I’ll be damned if I could squat with the 20-lb bar. My personal trainer at the time, Ryan Landis, looked at me with a small smirk on his face as I attempted this seemingly “simple” move with frustration and overall complete amazement at my inability. For anyone who has ever learned to overhead squat, this story is probably somewhat familiar.
In the same way CrossFit has developed basic standards of achievement in the press, deadlift, and squat – via the CrossFit Total – the overhead squat also has it’s own standard within the community.
Since around 2006, the gold standard of achievement in the overhead squat has been for an individual to perform 15 bodyweight overhead squats. And now with the rise of CrossFit and development of athletes beyond what was ever thought possible, the standard was recently updated to 1.25x bodyweight, but we’ll save that for 2017!
To quote the Overhead Squat article in the 2005 CrossFit Journal:
The overhead squat is the ultimate core exercise, the heart of the snatch, and peerless in developing effective athletic movement. This functional gem trains for efficient transfer of energy from large to small body parts – the essence of sport movement. For this reason it is an indispensable tool for developing speed and power. The overhead squat also demands and develops functional flexibility, and similarly develops the squat by amplifying and cruelly punishing faults in squat posture, movement, and stability.
The overhead squat is to midline control, stability, and balance what the clean and snatch are to power – unsurpassed.
(Source – CrossFit Journal, August 2005)
http://journal.crossfit.com/2005/08/the-overhead-squat-by-greg-gla.tpl
http://journal.crossfit.com/2005/08/the-overhead-squat-by-greg-gla.tpl

2 Responses

  1. Shane

    I remember in the early days trying to do overhead squats facing a wall in my house at the time with just my hands up. Eventually I was able to do a broomstick and then when I found an affiliate I had a chance to try a bar and it’s been a love/hate relationship ever since! Any mobility issues you have are immediately exposed.
    This is a classic of someone you may recognize: https://youtu.be/wjuULPqI-WY

  2. Googs

    Funny, I remember reading that referenced CFJ article soon after I started CrossFit. Glassman really sold me on the utility of the overhead squat, and soon afterward “Nancy” showed up on the whiteboard. I remember Nicole having me trade in my empty 45# barbell for a 35# one after the first round. I also remember PR’ing my OHS in the 2014 Open when that movement appeared in week two, with the prescribed weight of 95# — at least 10 pounds above my 1RM at the time. I managed to get seven wobbly reps in the two minute allotment and I was thrilled almost to the point of tears. The following year (when 15.2 = 14.2), I managed all 20 OHS in two unbroken sets of 10. I suppose we all have our favorite lifts and movements, and the OHS is one of mine.