Have you ever seen a child sitting in the position that the third man is in above? No? Of course you haven’t. That is an extremely active position. Really it is usually the position athletes go to during an un weighted squat if they lack mobility in their hips, knees, and ankles.
When children rest in a squat position they always rest with their hips lower and knees forward. The first athlete above mimics this with a much more upright and more naturally anatomical position.
The main difference between these squats is that the weight is in front of the athlete during a front squat (too obvious?). This is important to point out, though, because that placement makes all the difference. It makes it much easier to stay upright throughout the squatting motion. This demands the needed ankle, hip and knee mobility that is also required for all athletic movement. The more we train your natural athletic positions the greater you will perform in any sport. Even if back squats have a place and application you will improve your performance much greater by first fine tuning your natural movements and strengthening them.
If you struggle with the lower body mobility to do front squats you can use the movement itself to improve those areas. Simply use a lighter weight and focus on controlling the descent. Make sure you keep the weight in the middle of your feet, chest up, and knees out. Then sink into the squat until it becomes a moderate stretch. Hold here for :02 before standing again. Only squat as deep as you can with perfect form sinking a little deeper each repetition. This will help you gradually reach full depth if kept up each week. It will also create more range of motion throughout your lower limbs that apply to other movements.