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Old 03-27-2007, 06:40 AM   #1
Don Stevenson
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Default A small but profound revelation about jerking

Today i had a small but important breakthrough in jerking which i thought i'd share for two reasons

1. It might help someone with the same problem and
2. It shows that even when you "know" something you can always learn more by doing more and watching more.

Today I was doing jerks from racks, not one of the more common exercises in my program.

As I was warming up i kept thinking about my coaches constant advice to keep the chest up when jerking. This is a well known cue for jerking because when you drop the chest during the dip you tend to spear the weight forward and when i lose a jerk thats the problem 99% of the time.

Anyhooooo as my warm ups progressed i was coaching myself in my head and a thought struck me. Even though i try to think about keeping my chest up sometimes i still drop my elbows in during the jerk and this leads to the same problem.

I did a few sets thinking about keeping my elbows up and ignoring the chest and VOILA! much better jerks.

I think that this is overlooked as a coaching cue because a lot of people rotate the elbows down deliberately before jerking (which is fine as long as the chest stays "up") but for gumbys like me keeping the elbows up turns out to be an easy way of making sure my chest doesn't drop in.

It's a small thing but i guess it shows that even though i'm an O lift coach i've still got lots more to learn.

I also learnt today about "secret" strapping for comps but that was another story
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Old 03-27-2007, 08:10 AM   #2
Greg Everett
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this is a big problem for a lot of people--they end up with the bar in their hands instead of racked on their shoulders. either they shove it forward like your describe, or it slides down their chests when they dip, sucking up most of the drive power and causing them to miss. elbows a little higher and hands a little looser usually fixes that pretty quickly.
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Old 03-27-2007, 08:29 AM   #3
Mike ODonnell
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It's the simple things that make the world of difference.....thanks for the input Don.....
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Old 03-27-2007, 09:01 AM   #4
Robb Wolf
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Good stuff Don.
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Old 03-27-2007, 01:05 PM   #5
Elliot Royce
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yes, that's what Coach Valentine has been telling me, too. Also make sure your hands are not gripping the bar. Just let the legs drive through the body and get the bar moving.
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Old 03-27-2007, 03:16 PM   #6
Don Stevenson
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I've never had a problme with carrying the bar in my hands during jerks, trust me my coach would beat me to a pulp if i did that.

It just turns out that the visualisation to keep the elbows as high as possible stops my chest from dropping that 1" that leads to throwing the bar out in front. I guess the point is that this change is so small my coaches didn't even notice it!
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