Pistol progressions

So thanks to some CrossFit in my past, and above average ankle flexibility, regular pistols are relatively easy for me. I’m doing the body tension workouts as part of my warmups right now, and I’ve been trying to think of ways to make the pistols translate more directly to rooting legs for me. Adding weight I don’t think is the answer. I’ve been doing tiptoe pistols to try and focus on putting pressure through my toes, but wondering if there are other ideas out there!

I like the tiptoe variation. Possibly external rotation? I wouldn’t go too far down that road though - making them harder won’t necessarily translate to better drive through your legs - I’d put that energy into on the wall work.

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I like to use a tall box/table/something around hip height (adjust for your own abilities), high step onto the surface, transfer the weight so that you’re only on that leg without pushing off the trailing leg at all, take a moment to pause in that bottom position, then stand up. While I like pistols for several reasons and do still do them, this version translates more directly to climbing for me.
Not for rooting work, but another pistol progression that I like is deadstop pistols where I stop completely at the way bottom of a regular pistol before coming up (either at the bottom of squat depth or sitting on the ground), as well as a version where at the bottom of squat depth I stop and switch legs.

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Not pistols, but sissy squats. Making the knee-joint strong through its entire range of motion can’t hurt for drop knees and the like.

Just a different thing, not necessarily a replacement.

Really like the tall box suggestion, and switching feet!

I like sissy squats too, but do wish they had a different name :confused:

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Same, the name is kind of horrible. How about KnOT Squats (Knees Over Toes)?

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Absolutely. Yes, I should have given it more thought. As far as having a positive carry-over to rooting, sissy squats are an entirely different thing and not a replacement. I can envision them being used to practice body tension, especially if done without supporting one’s hands on something. It would require a very conscious contraction of the glutes and a controlled descent into the bottom position.

I think Knees Over Toes Guy on YouTube are trying to rebrand them as “KOT” squats

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I second tip toe squats and high box step ups. Another option, though not related to rooting directly, is to explore other leg exercises in the hunt for weaknesses. Split squats, VMO/cyclist/heel elevated squats, sissy/KOT squats, natural leg extensions… If you find a weakness, this can bring you rewards down the line with injury prevention and just having a stronger base of support from your legs. I’ve found various versions of calf raises to help my climbing, and other exercises have helped a knee issue.

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On a tangent, I wonder if having woefully undertrained tibialis anterior muscles is what is keeping me from bat hangs.

I’m curious how many potential bat hangs you encounter that would cause you to want to put energy toward them?

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The gym I’m at has an affinity for them. That is about it.

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I’ve been working on the tibialis for months now as part of my knee rehab, if I come across a bat hang I’ll let you know how that went.
I think the V10 Mercedes Pollmeier (from the PCC seminar) just climbed (her first!) actually had a bat hang type of move in it…

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