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So going for the "pump"—total muscle exhaustion and complete muscle annihilation—is not the name of the game here.Your body increases its strength by a) recruiting more muscle fibers in a particular muscle group and b) increasing the firing frequency of your motor neurons (neurons and muscle fibers).The muscle fibers associated with these motor units have the most potential for increasing strength. Maximal lifting is best applied to multijoint exercises (e.g., squats, deadlifts, presses, and pulls).

[This article is going to motivate you to exercise more.

They need strength, but additional bulk can be more of a hindrance than a help.

Likewise, athletes who compete in weight classes—like wrestlers, MMA fighters, boxers, and competitive Olympic weightlifters—want to be as strong as possible while trimming away any unnecessary weight. First, remember that strength isn't solely a property of muscle, but rather a property of the neuromuscular system.

In fact in reality, you would be quite wise to avoid the free standing barbell squat entirely.

I discuss why in the (informal) video blog below, in which I might come off as polarizing or aggravating to some.