Thursday, November 4, 2010

11-03-10: Squat Clean n Jerks

CrossFit WoD for Sunday October 31, 2010

155# 125# Squat Clean and Jerk, 30 reps (Sage Bergener demonstrates great looks so easy!)

The barbell goes from ground to overhead, passing through a front squat in which the crease of the hip passes below the height of the kneecap. The finish position is with the arms, hips and knees fully extended, arms overhead, with at least a portion of the ear visible in front of the arm. Dropping the barbell is acceptable.

Austin Malleolo 3:01, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet 3:53 (105lbs). - video [wmv] [mov]

Pat Barber in the full squat clean position. Essentially the bottom of a front squat. Both suck. (
So, the squat clean and jerk.  Easy enough.  The bar starts on the floor. You take a medium-width grip, and deadlift the bar off the floor, squeezing it under control, not yanking it off the floor.  When the bar hits about mid-thigh, you jump it up. You don't pull with the arms or shoulders, you explode with your legs and core, and the arms just rotate underneath, and pin the bar on your delts. To facilitate doing this with heavier weights, right after you explode, you IMPLODE and yank yourself under the moving bar (which will be slowing down as soon as you stop accelerating it), and catch it in the full squat position. What this accomplishes is that you don't need to explode the bar so HIGH, allowing you to safely and effectively clean much heavier weights than otherwise.

When you receive the bar, you catch it on your delts, and your arms (which are hopefully out in front of your body, parallel to the floor) merely PIN the bar there. You should NOT be carrying it in your hands, and certainly not on wrists that are perpendicular to the floor. If you are making that mistake, when you stand up from the squat, or when you jerk the bar overhead, utilizing a short explosive hip drive and extension, you'll end up absorbing that energy in your elbows and wrists, rather than communicating it directly to the bar. This is wasteful. It also hurts a lot. This is stupid.

By about rep 14, I was being wasteful and stupid. Most of my reps were NOT squat cleans, because my right wrist got angry at me very quickly.  It is both a lack of flexibility (seriously, look at Pat's forearms in the picture up there!), as well as a lack of clean technique.  I could feel the extra pulse of pressure every time I jerked the bar overhead, and it kept getting worse and worse. Pretty quickly, I realized that trying to incorporate the squat was increasing the amount of time I was keeping my arms in I flubbed the technique a bit in favor of trying to keep the MetCon part of the workout going. By the time I was down to the final few reps, I was resting between every two or so, just to keep stretching and massaging my forearm.  A fire-breathing workout it was NOT.

Total time: ??

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