Jump To Split
AKA Drop to split
The jump to split is an exercise to train the movement into the split position and strengthen the position for receiving jerks.
Place the barbell behind the neck as you would for a back squat, being sure to use a fairly narrow grip. Actively pull the bar tightly against your body to ensure it doesn’t shift during the exercise. Dip at the knees and drive upward slightly like a jerk with less upward power—just enough to create some time and space to split your feet. Jump your feet out quickly into your jerk split position and absorb the weight tightly, making sure to land in the proper position with your weight balanced approximately evenly between your front and back foot, and keeping your trunk tight and upright. Recover by stepping back about a third of the way back with the front foot, then stepping the back foot up to meet it.
This exercise can be very intimidating and may need to be introduced to a lifter with very light weights, although eventually heavy weights will be possible.
The jump to split strengthens the split receiving position for the jerk, which can often be a weakness that limits an athlete’s jerk. It also trains quick and accurate foot transition into the split position.
The jump to split should be done after the classic lift and variants, but can be done before more strength-oriented work like squatting and pulling. Weights of up to 100% and more of the athlete’s best jerk may be used for 1-5 reps, although 2-3 reps will be most common. It can also be done with light weights before a jerk workout as a technique primer to practice footwork for 3-5 reps.
The jump to split can be done without any upward drive—that is, the athlete will just pick up and split the feet with no upward movement of the bar first. This will limit the weight that can be used somewhat, and the lift can then more accurately be called a drop to split or split drop.