How To Do Zercher Squats | Movement Breakdown
Zercher squats are a type of squat variation that involves holding the barbell in the crease of your elbows, similar to a front squat, but without resting the barbell on your shoulders. Instead, you grip the barbell with your biceps and forearms. This exercise places significant emphasis on the upper back, core, and legs.
Zercher squats primarily target the quadriceps (front thigh muscles), glutes (butt muscles), and hamstrings (back thigh muscles). The Zercher also places an emphasis on your core muscles, upper back, and biceps due to the unique grip position.
If you're looking for an alternative to Zercher squats, you can consider other squat variations such as front squats, back squats, goblet squats, or hack squats. Each of these exercises targets similar muscle groups but may place emphasis differently as the zelcher is so unique.
Primary Benefits of Zercher Squats
Zercher squats offer several potential benefits compared to standard squats. They challenge and strengthen the same and different muscles in a different way like the upper back and biceps and they promote much better core engagement and stability as opposed to other squat variations.
To set up for Zercher squats, you would typically follow these steps (or watch the above video)
- Start by positioning the barbell at a low level on a squat rack or power rack.
- Step up to the bar and place your elbows underneath it, creating a "shelf" using your biceps and forearms.
- Cross your arms to secure the bar in place (or straight up if your a G)
- Step back from the rack and position your feet shoulder-width apart or slightly wider.
- Perform the squat movement, keeping your core tight, chest up, and maintaining proper form.
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