The topic is the “knees out” cue in this episode of Offline, an unscripted presentation of guests debating controversial subjects in the CrossFit world.
Host Russell Berger welcomes four guests:
- Kelly Starrett, leader of CrossFit Mobility seminars, owner of San Francisco CrossFit, doctor of physical therapy and author of Becoming a Supple Leopard.
- Jacob Tsypkin, owner of CrossFit Monterey.
- Lon Kilgore, professor at the University of West Scotland, CrossFit Journal contributor, co-author of Starting Strength and author of Anatomy Without a Scalpel.
- Quinn Henoch, another doctor of physical therapy and a competitive Olympic weightlifter.
The discussion focuses on an October blog post written by USA Weightlifting Hall of Fame Coach Bob Takano: The Knees Out Discussion.
In a comment responding to a reader, Takano said, “In this case knees out refers to pointing the knees outside of the angle of the feet. If you have a copy of Kelly Starrett’s Supple Leopard book, Diane Fu is demonstrating this in the photos of her performing squat snatches and squat cleans.”
“‘Knees out’ is not a style of squatting, and we have never represented it that way. In fact, that’s even ridiculous,” Starrett says on the show.
Starrett says the cue is about maintaining torque in the hip, as well as stability in the hip and back.
“What we’re looking at here is how to teach the squat, that’s what we’re actually talking about,” Kilgore says, adding that a method is outlined in Starting Strength.
“We cue ‘knees out,’ but we’re not using that as a criteria of where we have a very specific of concept of where the knees are. What we’re doing is lining up the line of identity of the foot and the femur—those should be in line,” he says.
He adds: “But to get that in most beginners, you have to cue knees out because they’ve never squatted before.”
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Video by Russell Berger and Noor Greene.
HD file size: 543 MB
SD mov file size: 205 MB
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Additional reading: Foundations by Greg Glassman, published April 1, 2002.