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Weightlifting Warm-up Tips

By Sean | In Events and Announcements, Mobility, Olympic Weightlifting | on October 7, 2013

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Those who have attended our Barbell classes have found that I ask lifters to warm-up on their own. I do that for a few reasons. First, most of you have been CrossFitting for some time now and have participated in countless warm-ups. My hope is that you are actively engaged in the warm-up and not merely wandering from movement to movement at your coach’s whim. Take those drills that you feel help prepare you the best and the ones you feel you need to improve on the most, and incorporate them into your own warm-up routine. The second reason I’ve been having barbell participants warm-up on their own is because everyone needs more time on their own stuff. Some need more mobility and rolling and should make it a major part of their preparation. Focusing on the thoracic spine, quads, and the hips just to name a few. Here is a quick 5-minute routine that should be done everyday according to the presenter in the morning when you wake up and/or as part of your warm-up.

For others more focus should be spent on improving stability and control using activation drills for the lower abdominals, glutes, and lower traps/shoulder stabilizers.  These drills aren’t sexy or even fun, but they’re critical for most of us to perform at our best and stay injury-free.  We perform drills day-in and day-out in our CrossFit class warm-ups so I won’t bore you with the details here, but if you need guidance just ask your coach for suggestions and tips.  For those who are rolling into the Barbell class just after completing the CrossFit WOD, I encourage some rolling and mobility before just jumping right into the lifting workout.

Once you’ve addressed your mobility, activation, and stability it’s time to start getting more specific with your drills. Greg Everett, owner and head coach at Catalyst Athletics in Sunnyvale, CA, recently posted an article entitled “Lift Before You Lift” where he mentions a few of his favorite pre-lift lifts to help prepare for the dynamic movements and demanding positions that the Snatch and Clean & Jerk will require of a lifter. Greg mentions the press from snatch (performed from a squat), the muscle clean & muscle snatch (look familiar?), and the tall jerk or the jump/drop to split. Read more about each drill and why he likes it on his site here.

The pre-lifts performed during a the warm-up are also an excellent way to focus on areas of the lifts that need extra attention. Speaking for myself now, I have found that I have difficulty in my snatch third pull and stabilizing in the receiving position. For that reason I make sure to include snatch balances or drop snatches as well as hang snatches or tall snatches with a lighter bar or empty 20kg barbell into my warm-ups. Especially on days where I’m snatching in the workout, but even on days when I’m not just to get the extra practice in. As we work together more, these drills will become more familiar to each of you and we’ll discuss how you can better tailor your warm-up time to your needs. As always, if you ever need some guidance just ask.

Remember to take advantage of your free Barbell class if you haven’t already. Just email Sean or Ruth to reserve your spot.  Our Intrepid Weightlifting competition is exactly 2 months away, so get some extra work in and be at your best come competition day!


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This Saturday, Oct 12th we are hosting a free hand balancing workshop with Harold “H” Gim starting at noon. Spots are going to fill up fast so reserve yours now. Space is limited to 30 participants. Sign up here!


WOD 10.07.13

“Barbara”
5 Rounds, Each For Time:
20 Pull-ups
30 Push-ups
40 Sit-ups
50 Squats
Rest 3 minutes between each round

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