Friday, February 19, 2016

Workout of the Day

Clean & Jerk Triples
7 sets of 3 reps w/ a short reset between reps
Start light and work up in even increments
25 min to a heavy set of 3

Receiving the Bar!

Below are some excerpts from an article by Greg Everett of Catalyst Athletics about receiving the bar in the clean. Original article is here.

Improving the Clean Through a Better Turnover

An idea I commonly talk about with my lifters is attempting to make the clean resemble the front squat as much as possible… So to make cleans more successful, we’re trying to optimize balance and stability, position the barbell as well as possible in the rack, and ensure enough of an eccentric movement to create tension and a stretch reflex to aid in the recovery. 

In order to take advantage of these elements of the front squat during the clean, the turnover needs to keep the bar and body in immediate proximity to each other, bring the bar and shoulders together smoothly and precisely, and occur in as high of a squat position as possible.

Proximity of the bar and body during the turnover is maintained by moving the arms properly. This not only keeps the bar moving in the desired path, but also keeps the body close to the bar. The elbows should have been turned out from the start of the lift and kept in that orientation so that when the pull under the bar is performed, the bending elbows move out and up rather than back. The elbows moving back prematurely encourages the bar to move forward away from the body.

This movement of the arms in the initial stage of the pull under is also critical for the precision and timing of the delivery of the bar into the rack position. The actual turnover of the elbows is not a strong movement, much like in the snatch; if the body has not been accelerated downward adequately, the turning over of the elbows will not be sufficient to bring the bar and body together properly or allow the elbows to complete their spin around the bar quickly enough (or at all). This is a violent, aggressive pull against the bar to set up the turnover of the elbows, which is really just a follow-through.

This movement can be thought of as positioning the barbell near the shoulders (and the shoulders near the barbell) to establish it as an axis around which the elbows can pivot quickly. This spin of the elbows around the bar is difficult, slow and occasionally impossible if the bar and body are still in the middle of the process of moving into this position.

As a part of the movement of the elbows around the bar as the bar and shoulders come together, the shoulder blades should be retracted as the elbows come back and around, in effect rowing the bar in toward the body. This will further ensure that the bar is delivered securely into the rack position rather than winding up too far forward, or similarly problematic, forcing the lifter to lean the chest forward to reach for the bar.

Generally lifters should end up in the rack position without a full grip around the bar; that is, the bar will be resting securely on the shoulders and the hands will be at least partially open with the fingers under the bar…

As a final part of the turnover, the shoulders should be pushed up into the bar to ensure the connection is made smoothly and that the bar is not allowed to simply drop onto the shoulders….

Lastly, the turnover should always be completed as soon as possible; that is, the lifter should attempt to secure the bar in the rack position in as high of a squat position as possible….


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