4 Squat WODs that Build Explosive Power

The squat is one of the best exercises for building explosive power. And many functional fitness programs, including CrossFit, incorporate squat based movements into different workout programs and WODS.

Whether the squat is the main component of the workout or a bridge to other challenging exercises, and whether focused on building strength or cardio (or a combination of both), these sequences can be some of the most effective workouts in your overall routine. 

But there are various types of Squat WODs to select from, and it can be hard to filter through the programs to find the WODs that make sense for your goals.

To help you out, we’ve selected 4 of our favorite squat WODs to try out, along with several variations to help you scale and/or modify the workouts.

The 220327 WOD

The 220327 WOD is done for time and consists of the following workouts:

  • 4 Shuttle Runs
  • 8 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 1 Rope Climb
  • 8 Shuttle Runs
  • 16 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 2 Rope Climbs
  • 12 Shuttle Runs
  • 24 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 3 Rope Climbs
  • 16 Shuttle Runs
  • 32 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 4 Rope Climbs
  • 12 Shuttle Runs
  • 24 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 3 Rope Climbs
  • 8 Shuttle Runs
  • 16 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 2 Rope Climbs
  • 4 Shuttle Runs
  • 8 Wall Ball Shots (14 pounds)
  • 1 Rope Climb

The total time cap for this WOD is 25 minutes.

How to Do the 220327 WOD

young sporty bearded man at the seaside prepare for the shuttle run
Image Credit: Shutterstock

For the most part, the Squat WOD begins with you creating a floor plan with all the equipment you will need. For ease and better transitions, you should place the medicine ball and the rope on the same side at the Shuttle Run’s beginning.

To protect yourself, place the medicine ball at least 8 feet away from the start of the shuttle run. This might not be possible for some, so try to place it as safely as possible.

This Squat WOD starts when you touch the rope. You will begin doing 8 wall ball shots, 4 shuttle runs (back and forth, the length of the floor is 1 rep), and 1 rope climb. This is the first round.

The second round begins with 16 wall ball shots, 2 rope climbs, and 8 shuttle runs. Remain consistent with this group, increasing your reps and then decreasing them till the final round. The final round will include 8 wall ball shots, 1 rope climb, and 4 shuttle runs. The time only stops once you go past the designated marker on the rope.

Your score is tallied by combining the total number of repetitions or how long it takes to complete the entire workout. There are no tie breaks with this workout.

This Squat WOD is all about increasing your explosive power. When you conduct the shuttle run sets, ensure that you pace yourself.

While you might be thinking going gong-ho is the most effective method, taking the time to ensure you maintain a steady pace is the most effective way to meet the time cap on this WOD.

This kind of workout effectively tests your aerobic and muscular capacity.

Moreover, you need to ensure that your transitions from one exercise to another in this Crossfit workout are smooth. Smooth transitions can help you save time.

Linchpin Test 5 WOD

The Linchpin Test 5 WOD is done for time and consists of the following exercises:

  • 20 Back Squats at 155 pounds
  • 2 Mile Run
  • 20 Back Squats at 155 pounds

The Linchpin Test 5 WOD is simply one round and is done for time. This workout aims to complete the exercises as quickly as possible.

Brian WOD

The Brian WOD is a CrossFit Hero WOD that consists of 3 rounds for time. It includes the following exercises:

  • 5 Rope Climbs
  • 25 Back Squats at 135 pounds

The Brian WOD consists of 3 rounds in which you alternate between rope climbs and back squats. You must pace yourself at all times during this workout. Starting too intensely could cause you to burn out and then use improper form during these exercises.

John Burnside WOD

The John Burnside WOD is another hero WOD that is done for time. It is made up of 3 rounds that consist of the following exercises:

  • 20 Back Squats at 205 pounds
  • 20 Box Step Ups using 24-inch boxes

This WOD is named after John Burnside, a member of the FDNY killed during the 9/11 attacks. It requires you to do 3 rounds of back squat and box steps. You can improve your time by setting up your area beforehand, ensuring you don’t have to walk too far when transitioning from the back squats into the box step ups.

Other Squat Variations

Here are some more squat variations you can use to maximize your workout and keep you on your toes. Any of these would make a great addition to any squat WOD  you engage in and CrossFit workout. Maintain perfect mechanics and form when doing these exercises.

Air Squat: An air squat is a good beginner squat WOD and works your glutes, hamstrings, and quads while improving your balance and core strength. When doing air squats, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart with your arms hanging at your sides. Engage your core muscles, push out your chest, and pull your shoulder blades towards each other. Bend your knees, squat down and keep your weight on your heels while also maintaining a tight core.

Overhead Squat: The weight is above your head when you do an overhead squat. This exercise requires more stability, mobility, and flexibility than you would need to have to follow through with a traditional squat. Read this post to learn more about the overhead squat WOD.

Dumbbell Squat: A dumbbell squat requires you to hold a dumbbell in your hands at your sides. You will then complete a basic squat while keeping your chest open and head up.

Squat Snatch: There really is no difference between a squat snatch and a snatch. Hold the power receiving position for two to three seconds to do an overhead squat snatch. Sit directly into an overhead squat and then stand for recovery.

Box Jump to Squat: To complete a box jump to squat, you need a plyometric box. If you have never used a box before, you want to do so with caution. Stand in front of the plyometric box, drop down, jump up, and land on the box while dropping into a squat position. Step off the box and repeat the exercise. Learn more about the Box Jump WOD here

Tim Rollins, Editor

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