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From the CFI Vault: Kicking the Habit

By admin | In Olympic Weightlifting | on October 12, 2012


Most of us learn by monkey see, monkey do, but sometimes it becomes monkey hear, monkey do. When it comes to snatches, cleans, and jerks, we often hear a loud stomping sound when we watch these lifts performed by the elite athletes and try to emulate it in our own lifting. However, unless we fully understand what is actually causing the sound, we may inadvertently c block our own lifts.

Arguably the most important component of the Olympic lifts is the act of cause and effect: pushing down into the ground to effectively drive the barbell up. To maximize this drive, our feet need to be pushing down as long as possible until the point we pull ourselves under the bar. The loud stomp we hear is actually the weight of the bar and lifter landing at the same time.

So when novice lifters are trying to mimic the stomping sound they hear, they end up lifting their knees and sometimes kicking their feet back (a la donkey). This shortens the time they’re driving against the ground, and prolongs the airtime when they should be getting under the weight as fast as they can. Also an excessive stomp at landing can jar the weight that may have otherwise been perfectly balanced overhead or in the rack position.

Concentrate instead on foot work. Once you finish your 2nd pull (full triple extension), pull yourself under the bar while skimming your feet to the landing stance (shoulder width) as you close your hips quickly to get under the bar.

Here are some other articles that may help in your jerk today:


WOD 10.12.12

Jerk 2-2-2

3 Rounds:

  • Row 250m
  • 3 Snatches

Rest 2 minutes

3 Rounds:

  • 20 Ball Slams
  • 10 Handstand Push Ups

One Comment to "From the CFI Vault: Kicking the Habit"

  • grandpa says:

    October 12, 2012 at 7:25 AM -

    thank you for re-posting!

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