The Path to a Better Squat – JTS Strength’s Squat Workshop

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Left: Marisa Inda squatting 275+ lbs. Right: Chad Wesley Smith squatting 700+ lbs. Pictures via IG: @marisainda and @chadwesleysmith

On January 23, JTS Strength hosted a free squat workshop at their new headquarters located at Left Coast Crossfit in Laguna Niguel, California. The workshop was led by the Owner/Founder of JTS Strength, Chad Wesley Smith, along with Marisa Inda and Dr. Quinn Henoch.


Chad Wesley Smith is the Owner/Founder of Juggernaut Training Systems and for good reason. Smith is an elite powerlifter, professional strongman, and has coached over 50 athletes ranging from division 1 college athletes to NFL players to strength competitors. With his experience and resume, it’s safe to say that Smith knows what he’s talking about.

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Dr. Quinn Henoch has a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from the University of Indianapolis and is the head of the rehabilitation for JTS Strength. His clinic, Paradigm Performance Therapy, is located just across from JTS Strength’s gym in Laguna Niguel, CA. He currently trains full-time as an Olympic weightlifter. He has competed in the 2014 American Open and also qualified for 2015 National Championships.

Marisa Inda is a graduate in Biology from Antioch College, an elite powerlifter, a mother of two, a former gymnast, and is most commonly known as, “The Pull-Up Dancer,” from The Elle Degeneres Show. Inda is an inspiration by proving that women can be both strong, beautiful, and a mother. I found it hilarious when some friends showed me this video to state women should focus only on calisthenics, only for them to not realize Inda holds American Records in powerlifting. Inda is living proof that the phrase, “lifting makes you manly,” is nothing but a myth.

The free squat workshop was a two-hour long seminar that went over five key points to improve the squat. The seminar was a full house with close to 200 people in attendance. Several people in the audience were chosen to be the squat examples while Smith, Inda, and Dr. Henoch discussed and pointed out what to pay attention to. While not everyone was able to squat, the seminar provided great information with straightforward explanations that did not over-complicate everything. It was great to see the Smith, Inda, and Dr. Henoch take the time to answer everyone’s question and even crack a couple jokes to keep up everyone’s energy.

If you missed out, don’t worry. Here are the key points Smith went over:

  1. Tightness in the Setup
  2. 360 Degrees of Pressure
  3. 135 Like Your Max, Your Max Like 135
  4. Screw Your Feet Into The Floor
  5. Equal Pressure with back into bar and feet into floor

If you have these problems with the squat, Smith recommends to fix your technique first then try these exercises:

Folding Forward Out Of The Hole
– Front Squats
– Safety Squat Bar Squats
– Upper Back Work (Rows, Chinups/Pullups, Upright Rows)

Getting Stuck In The Hole
– Pause Squats in the Bottom Position (2 to 10 second holds in the hole)
– Pause Squats Just Above Parallel On The Way Down (2 to 5 count)
– Wide Stance Squats

Getting Stuck Just Above Parallel
– Belt Squats/Front Squats/SSB Squats/Leg Press/Olympic Squats
– Pause Squats in the Bottom Position
– Pause Squats Just Above Parallel On The Way Up (2 to 5 count)
– Dead Squats


For a free squat workshop, I can’t argue with the results. Smith, Inda, and Dr. Henoch took on everyone question people had to ask and covered most, if not all, the major problems people have in the squat. I drove over an hour from Los Angeles to attend the workshop and I would do it again.

Juggernaut Training Systems will be at booth 1642 at the TheFitExpo Los Angeles at the Los Angeles Convention Center from January 23-14.

Happy Squatting.




Great workshop. Straight to the point, cleared up misconceptions, and gave five easy steps to a better squat.

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