whats the difference between doing squats or doing leg presses? i'm pretty sure they work the same muscles...

i guess technically what i'm asking is, since i can do 435lb on leg presses, does it translate to being able to squat 435?

and is being able to do power cleans something important??

Squatting uses your back muscles, too.

It's dangerous to try to squat 435 if you max out on 435 with leg presses. Work your way up and see what you can do.

Never heard of a power clean.
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No way man. Leg Presses isolates just the leg muscles themselves. Squatting uses your back and core and actually a little arm muscle. Trying that much weight can be dangerous without proper technique and wraps and a belt.

And the power clean and hang clean are great explosive power builers. They can help you get much quicker and get a better first step for running.
o...ok.....well 435 isnt what i maxed out at, cause i can get alot higher, but i'm doing 2 sets of 15 leg presses at 435 until it becomes easier and then i'll move up.

does anyone know any exercises that can help strengthen your back?
There was a study done that showed that Power lifters performed better than all pro athletes in bench, squat, vertical. These guys know what to do. The squat is one of the best exercises you can do. It works your quads, glutes, lowerback, core, even muscles in your upper body too. Just be sure to perform them correctly. Any dumbass can load of the bar and bend there knees to inches and call it a squat. Your legs should be at least 90 degrees at the bottom of the movement or your not getting the benefits of the exercise. Leg presses are isolating your legs so of course you can lift more. The squat makes you stablize your body from head to toe, thus requiring more muscles to fire. Start light and go deep enough.