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The jerk balance is a teaching drill, a remediation exercise, and a training exercise for the split jerk.
Secure the bar in the jerk rack position
and step into the full split jerk receiving position. Step about a foot-length back with the front foot into a partial split position—this will be the starting position for each rep. Keeping your weight balanced evenly between the front and back foot, dip straight down, drive straight up, and step the front foot forward into the full split position while punching the bar up into the overhead position. The back foot should stay connected to the floor throughout the movement and your weight should be balanced evenly between your feet when your front foot reconnects with the floor. The hips should also move forward as you step the front foot to keep them under the bar in the split position.
The most common errors in this exercise are diving the chest forward rather than stepping into the split with the front foot and hips and leaning too much weight on the front foot. The trunk should remain approximately vertical (only inclining forward slightly as required by a proper overhead position) and the weight always evenly balanced between the front and back feet.
The jerk balance is useful for teaching and practicing the proper movement of the body under the bar during the split jerk for athletes who have a habit of diving the head and chest through and leaving the hips behind the bar. It’s also helpful for teaching better balance between the feet in the split position rather than overloading the front leg.
The jerk balance can be used as a technique primer
before jerk training sessions, or as technique work at any other time. If used as a primer, light weights (as little as an empty bar) should be used. Sets of 2-3 reps are suggested with weights anywhere from 40%-70% to the lifter’s maximum jerk can be used at other times, but only if the lift is being done correctly—not only will it not be helpful if not done properly, it will just reinforce the very problems it’s supposed to correct.
The jerk balance can also be done from behind the neck.