Practice this new exercise (demo here) and get comfortable with it; next week we will do it for singles. We like this squat because it allows a more upright posture and thus puts less pressure on the back. The arm position is unusual and may lead to some bruising, but you will quickly get used to it the same way you got used to the kettlebell clean and jerk.
Louie Simmons says:
Are there other forms of squatting done at Westside? Yes. The Zercher squat. Ed Zercher invented this exercise years ago. I was first intrigued after reading about Robert Barnett doing the Zercher lift, where one squatted down and hooked the elbows under the bar and stood up. Mr. Barnett was capable of doing 5 reps off the floor with 395. His body weight was 165 and he could deadlift 675. He did this around 1966. After getting out of the army in 1969, I started doing Zercher squats off the floor. My best was 320, and I made a 670 deadlift in 1973 at 181. When I moved up to 198, I couldn’t lift the bar off the floor because I had become too thick around the waist. I started doing a Zercher squat. I would lift the bar, which was on a low rack pin, in my elbows and go as low as possible. I used two versions: One was to lower the bar until it sat on my knees. The second was to lower the bar out over my knees as low as possible, then drop my hips as low as I could to stretch the lower back and then stand up. With this method, I made 500 at an all-star wrestling convention. At the time I made an official 710 deadlift at 198. Read more here.
250 meter row