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Effects of Changing from Full Range of Motion to Partial Range of Motion on Squat Kinetics

Drinkwater, Eric J.; Moore, Norman R.; Bird, Stephen P

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: April 2012 - Volume 26 - Issue 4 - p 890–896
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318248ad2e
Original Research

Abstract: Drinkwater, EJ, Moore, NR, and Bird, SP. Effects of changing from full range of motion to partial range of motion on squat kinetics. J Strength Cond Res 26(4): 890–896, 2012—It is commonplace for people involved in recreational weight training to limit squat depth to lift heavier loads. This study compares differences in movement kinetics when squatting in the full range of motion (FROM) vs. partial range of motion (PROM). Ten men with a 1-year minimum of resistance training attended 4 sessions each comprising 4 sets of squats following one of FROM for 10 repetitions (FROM10) at an intensity of 67% 1 repetition maximum (1RM) FROM squat, PROM for 10 repetitions (PROM10) at 67% 1RM PROM squat, FROM for 5 repetitions (FROM5) at 83% FROM squat or PROM for 5 repetitions (PROM5) at 83% 1RM PROM squat. Movement velocity was not specified. Squat kinetics data were collected using an optical encoder. Differences between conditions were analyzed by repeated-measures analysis of variance and expressed as mean differences and standardized (Cohen) effect sizes with 95% confidence limits. The PROM5 power was substantially more than the PROM10 (98 W, −21 to 217; mean, lower and upper 95% confidence limits), FROM5 (168 W, 47–289), and FROM10 (255 W, 145–365). The force produced during PROM5 was substantially more than PROM10 (372 N, 254–490), FROM5 (854 N, 731–977), and FROM10 (1,069 N, 911–1227). The peak velocity produced during FROM10 was substantially more than FROM5 (0.105 m·s−1, 0.044–0.166), PROM10 (0.246 m·s−1, 0.167–0.325), and PROM5 (0.305 m·s−1, 0.228–0.382). The FROM5 was substantially more than FROM10 (86 J, 59–113), PROM5 (142 J, 90–194), and PROM10 (211 J, 165–257). Therefore, either range of motion can have practical implications in designing resistance training programs depending on if the training goal is related to power and force development, maximizing work output or speed. Moderate-load PROM training, common among recreational weight trainers, is unlikely to provide higher movement kinetics.

School of Human Movement Studies, Charles Sturt University, Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia

Address correspondence to Eric J. Drinkwater,

Copyright © 2012 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.