Reverse Movements | Partial Movements | Isometrics
"Reverse" movements eliminate the built-up negative energy that makes the positive (concentric) contraction easier to perform. What does that mean? Take a normal squat. You begin by unracking the weight, then slowly lower your body as if sitting in a chair before exploding upward to a standing position.
During that downward phase, you build up negative energy—also called "the stretch-shorten cycle" in more technical terms—which helps you powerfully press out of the bottom of the squat. If you remove that energy and begin each rep from the bottom, you start from a dead stop. (That's where the name deadlift comes from, by the way; the deadlift is a prime example of a pure reverse movement.)
Power Rack Training Series Reverse Movements
Watch The Video - 4:47
To try a "reverse" squat, once you press upward to a standing position, squeeze your legs and glutes as normal, then return the bar to the safeties. Don't tap and go, as you would naturally have the tendency to do; instead, allow the bar to settle on the safeties. You can even separate your traps from the bar ever so slightly to completely remove all tension before you begin the next rep.
You'll quickly realize it is much more difficult to begin each rep without the benefit of the negative energy built up during conventional reps. Training this way will cause you to be that much stronger once you go back to conventional squatting, combining the elastic recoil from the negative portion of a rep with your newfound positive strength.