How Spectacular Is A 275lbs Squat? Front Squat? Find Out...
Updated April 22nd 2020; April 3rd 2019
A 275lbs squat is one of the major milestones for any beginner starting to lift weights.
Squats are a huge deal in the strength training world.
Featured as one of the best lower body compound exercises, squats do more than just develop your muscularity - they also work on many intangibles too, like your character and determination.
No one can argue about the unbelievable benefits of squatting.
But, how much should you squat?
What is a good squat max to hit to be considered strong?
Is a 275lbs squat good?
A 275lbs squat is an awesome goal to hit for someone in any weight group.
According to several studies, the average US citizen weighs close to 180lbs, making 275lbs almost 100lbs over their own bodyweight.
Typically, the benchmark for squats is 225lbs, which is commonly referred to as 2 plates.
One plate is extremely easy to hit, even for a beginner who has never lifted weights.
There is a high chance that you weigh more than 1 plate, which is 135lbs.
If you do any sort of walking or sports, squatting 135lbs should be a breeze.
However, I do realize that there are some people who struggle to squat 135lbs.
It makes it that much more satisfying to know that all your hard work and effort was used in order to help you get stronger.
2 plates seem to be that threshold that separates the untrained individual from the casual lifters.
Many gym-goers can achieve a 225lbs squat with some stretch of dedicated effort.
Usually, this would involve at least 6 months, depending on the athlete.
However, it is a great achievement to squat 275lbs if you weigh less than 200lbs.
If you do weigh over 200lbs, your goal should be trying to squat 100lbs above your bodyweight to be reasonably fit.
Here is a surprising statistic for you.
In a new government study, did you know that 80% of Americans do not get the recommended daily amount of exercise?
This is not surprising since lifting weights has always been a minority community.
So, if you are squatting 275lbs under 200lbs, know that you are in the top 10-15% of Americans that are exercising and living life.
Is a 275lbs front squat good?
According to these strength standards, a 275lbs front squat max, if you weigh between 170-200lbs, would place you in between the intermediate and advanced levels of front squatting strength.
A 275lbs front squat is a great goal and milestone to hit.
Many beginner programs usually do not emphasize front squat training so there is some disconnect between lifter’s back squat and front squat ratios.
This is also another reason why some athletes just train movements that they want to get stronger in and have the best ROI.
Squat plateau at 275
If you have a squat plateau at 275lbs, it is similar to being stuck at 225lbs in your squats.
So, this is what do you need to do to break your 275lbs squat plateau and get unstuck...
1. Follow a program
If you are new to strength training, you can refer to this guide in order to pick out a program.
If you have a 275lbs squat max, you are still a beginner.
That or you have not been running your training program effectively...
There is a reason why a lot of beginner programs exist - they were meant for beginners to select from and follow.
You need to put your entire faith in the program you select and stick with it, through thick and thin, for at least a year.
Why do I say that?
One common error I noticed many novice lifters make is that they always want to jump onto the newest thing.
Sometimes, we will go through rough patches.
Failed workouts, missed workouts, workouts that just flat out suck.
You want to quit, maybe even not lift again.
I get it.
All lifters have faced those demons throughout their lifting journey.
And you know what?
They will keep coming back until you accept the process and journey and embrace the learning.
So, one common tactic that many beginner lifters do is that they quit a program right when it gets hard.
This is a terrible thing to do.
At the time, you probably cannot wait to get off whatever stupid program you are doing.
But this is a needed lesson in your strength building experience.
You need to experience all these lifting lessons before you can become a stronger and better lifter.
Another thing beginner lifters want to do is to modify a program.
Now, if a program says it can be modified, go right ahead.
But if you chose a beginner strength training program, there are no modifications to be made.
As a strength training beginner, you have not been introduced to any training stimulus.
This means that you will respond to every single exercise, with any set and rep ranges.
And this period is usually an accelerated growth until your body begins to adapt and be more efficient.
This can last anywhere between a couple of weeks to a couple of months.
After these “newbie gains” have been exhausted, you may be tempted to try a different program. I suggest otherwise.
Stick it out.
Finish the program for at least one year.
You will learn a lot about yourself and what really works for you.
2. Do not stop squatting
Okay, you got to 185lbs.
Maybe even 225-245lbs.
Now, you are stuck.
You have been training “hard” but you cannot seem to push past your plateaus.
You have “stalled” for more than 3 workouts and you do not know what to do.
Here is another pro tip, DO NOT stop squatting.
While “less” can sometimes mean more, unless you have been doing a special squat program to only increase your squat (yes, these do exist), then you should not be trying to decrease your squat frequency.
Keep it the same and continue to develop your strength.
You may now be in a period where your body cannot recover fully before every workout.
Now, you need to make increments every week.
This is not a bad thing, it just means your body has adapted to the beginner strength training stimulus.
So, get back to work.
Do not stop squatting.
There have been countless stories of people who have disproportionate squats with respect to their body weight.
You may even feel that their squat maxes are laughable.
And the biggest culprit for that? Not squatting enough.
Some lifters were only squatting once a week.
Some lifters were doing bodybuilding programs, that only squat once a week but do leg accessories on another day.
It is a simple solution for a weak squat - you need to keep squatting more.
Make it a goal and do not let your focus waver.
3. Form needs to be good, if not great
For the most part, many lifters do naturally have a good squat form.
However, many benefits of modern living (cellphones, computers, chairs to name a few) contribute to tension in our bodies and poor posture.
As a result, your squat form can be compensated with tightness in your hips, back, knees, ankles, etc.
This goes back to bullet 2, you need to keep squatting.
Avoid extended periods of sitting and try to stay on your feet.
Make sure you continue to move your body and stretch if needed.
Obviously, if you have been reinforcing poor posture for years, it will take some time to reverse the damage.
But this does not mean you cannot squat.
As legendary powerlifter Ed Coan would say, you need to just work with what you can do and gradually make improvements each week.
For example, let us say you cannot squat below parallel.
In the first week of squatting, you can try to do high box squats.
Next week, try to squat down on a lower box.
And the week after that, squat on an even lower box.
Gradual improvements over time are great for your mental health and performance.
But it needs to be concentrated effort otherwise, you will not utilize all your efforts into obtaining your worthwhile goal.
275 to 315 squat
With a linear progression program, it took me around 4 months to hit a 315lbs working set.
In terms of total training time, it took me around 4 years to hit a 315lbs squat in training.
If it were a max effort 315lbs, I could have done it in between years 2-3.
How long did it take me to squat 275lbs?
From the first time I touched weight in the gym, it took me 17 months to squat 275lbs for 1 set of 5 reps at 165lbs.
From the first time I started a linear progression program, it took me 5 months to squat 275lbs for 1 set of 5 reps at 165lbs.
What should my squat weight progression be?
If you are a beginner lifter, you should be able to increase your squat weight 5lbs every successful workout.
This is typical for any general strength training program.
This is recommended since you want to continue to progress as fast as possible.
After a while, once you really understand the core strength training principles behind your strength training program, you can begin to tweak programs to fit your rate of recovery.
You can check the squat standards for your gender and weight group online.
There are surveys and research done on what the average male or female should squat at a certain bodyweight.
Now, all of this information goes down the toilet if you do not want to squat 275lbs.
What is your goal to squat 275lbs?
Do you want to squat 315 lbs?
Are you trying to get stronger for a sport?
Do you want to impress someone?
Squatting 275lbs is a good milestone for all lifers.
In fact, it is one of the stepping stones to squatting 2x bodyweight.
One of the next questions you may ask is, how long to squat 2x bodyweight.
Again, all your results strictly depend on how seriously you dedicate time, resources and thought into lifting.
Have you ever seen a world champion Olympic weightlifter, 1st place bodybuilder, or 4x World’s Strongest Man just stumble their way to the top?
Yeah, me neither.
It takes consistency, effort, willpower, to name a few attributes to get to the top.
I’ll see you there.