Have you ever tried Dead Squats?
Basically doing only the concentric part of a squat.
I recently read about it in Josh Bryant’s post How to Win Meets and Influence Squats and Deadlifts:
Dead squats develop rate of force development (RFD), which is how quickly one can develop tension in a muscle. Concentric-only muscle actions, with no negative loading phase, offer huge gains in RFD. There is’t a stretch shortening cycle to help you, so you must develop tension in the muscle quickly if you’re going to get it moving.
Another good point made by kalis in the comments, is using these as teaching tool to
get under the bar, positioning and pushing from mid sole/heel. For beginners its a great way of getting people to activate the glutes (which is severely missed in people lacking hip drive in the squat)
Here is Ed McKelvey doing Dead Squats with bands.
Post your experiences in the comments.
Update: Here ATG reader Glenn with a 405lbs Dead Front Squat.
Via gtg009′s comment
Dead front squats for Olympic lifting seem like they might help with the RFD for getting the bar off the floor as well as keeping you from getting pinned by a clean if you don’t catch the bounce
Damn, you guys are a great inspiration!