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Old 12-29-2007, 02:16 PM   #91
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Wow.....excellent advice. You're the man, Lincoln. I agree with everything and now it's time to do it.

All the best,
Arden


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lincoln Brigham View Post
Arden,

On your "get set" position your shoulders are well behind the bar. Not good. If you raise your hips, the shoulders should move forward. It may seem counterintuitive, but your shoulders can be in front of the bar and still pull the bar towards you as it leaves the ground.

Now for the hard part:
After all these pages and pages of advice and critique, you need to learn how to stop thinking while lifting. You've gotten oodles of tips and tricks to work on, maybe too much. None of that will do you much good when you have a heavy bar in hand. If you are an Einstein, the best a coach can hope for you to think about is no more than two corrections at a time. If you're simply smarter than average, maybe you can hold one technical correction in your head without overloading. If you are like the rest of us, when the bar gets heavy even one technical issue to think about maybe be a bit too much.

What I would suggest now is that you watch a ton of video of top lifters. Ingrain those images in your head. Imagine your own body moving in exactly the same manner. Visualize THAT when you lift - not technical stuff like "elbows go here, knees go there", but more generalized concepts such as "Explosive under the bar like Vanev" or "compact set up like Dimas" or "keep the pull close like Oliver Caruso" or "quick transitions like Kahki" or "straight up and down like Kolecki". Memorize the look of a perfect lift, visualize a perfect lift, then execute.

I think the general issue with your lifting is that you haven't seen enough good lifting. It's like basketball - nobody has to teach kids in the U.S. to stop shooting two-handed jump shots. Nobody taking a shot in college basketball is thinking, "keep the elbow in". That's junior high school stuff. At the college level they're thinking, "Just like Mike."
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Old 12-31-2007, 03:12 AM   #92
Kirez Reynolds
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoon Sohn View Post
Hey Arden,
Regarding body/barbell positioning (keeping it close), check out Kendrick Farris' 2nd attempt C&J at 190, among others:

http://web.mac.com/kirkwood.wl/2006%...ge6/page6.html (work and family safe link to Oly vids)

The vids on this site are great because they're very easy to pause. Check out his positions...you'll notice that the bar actually makes contact with his legs at one point in the 2nd pull and stretches his singlet a bit.
Apologies if I'm out of order... I just now found this thread and am enjoying it, trying to learn though I'm COMPLETELY new to Olympic lifting.

In this video of Kendrick Farris (190 2nd attempt), at precisely that point where the bar has pulled on his singlet --- it appears to me his shoulders are *behind* the bar.

I can't speculate exactly how it would look from the side, but his shoulders may even be behind the plane of his hips; they are at least on the same plane. But not in front of it. His back is just slightly extended.

Am I seeing this wrong? Or -- is it in fact the case that the bar travels straight up, triple extension means knees-hips-ankles, the shoulders certainly start in front of the bar but when the bar is at thigh level, the shoulders are already behind it...

This may be relevant to Arden because he's muscling it with his back, and this posture seems relevant... to activate the legs, need to get the torso upright and that means the shoulders behind the bar.

Sorry if I'm cocking this discussion up --- I've so little experience it's an armchair discussion for me and I may be completely tangential to y'all. I'm here researching this because last night my wife was doing GRACE and I was out of my depth to coach her because I myself don't know what I'm doing; I took a video of her, but I am reading as much as possible first before I post asking for help.
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Old 12-31-2007, 01:06 PM   #93
Lincoln Brigham
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

At that point the shoulders are still in front of the bar. (It's a bad angle to see that.) However his shoulders are indeed starting to move behind the bar and by the finish of the second pull they are indeed behind the bar. The shoulders HAVE TO finish behind the bar if the lifter is to finish the extension on the second pull.

The coaching point is this: The lifter needs to start with shoulders in front of the bar* and keep them over the bar AS LONG AS POSSIBLE. That does not mean for the entire lift. In Arden's case he wasn't even starting with his shoulders over the bar; they were well behind. Most inexperienced lifters are impatient and start certain elements of the lift much much much too early.


*whether the shoulders should start directly over the bar or in slightly front of the bar is a matter of some late night debate over many beers. But all coaches agree that the shoulders should not start behind the bar.
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Old 12-31-2007, 08:07 PM   #94
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

The shoulders in front of the bar are one of the things I'm really going to drill the next few weeks.

After reading Newton's book, and Tommy Kono's book, and consulting with Randy Hauer, I'm going to relearn the clean from the top down. Start on high blocks or in the "strength position" or "scoop" with the bar on my mid thigh (I have long arms, so it may appear low for most, but, for me, I can nearly scratch my knees without bending). Then work on the triple extension, shrug, lift and stomp feet, and rack.

After a week of nothing but those drills, I'm going to remove one block and start at just below knee height, and work on getting myself into the scoop position or the 2nd pull.

In watching a bunch of my videos, this is where I start losing it really bad. Moreso in the earlier videos than now, but I'm still bending my arms way too soon. It's very counterintuitive for me to bring my knees under the bar in a "hitching manner" given all the years of heavy deadlifts I've done. So this will likely be one of the hardest things for me to learn.

I'm starting to understand the importance of keeping your lat's tight, or as Allen once wrote, "crushing a potatoe chip between your lat and tricep."

That tightness keeps the bar close to the body and keeps the shoulders in front of the bar. It's going to be hard for me to learn, but it's coming.

Thanks to everyone for the input. I sincerely appreciate it. Someday I hope to be confident enough to advise others on these lifts, but for now I'll try and comment on things I've been told or have experienced myself. Ask me anything about squatting, deadlifting, benching, etc. But these speed movements are an art form. I like them a lot. I wish I would have been doing them the past 20 years.

All the best,
Arden
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Old 01-02-2008, 06:41 AM   #95
Allen Yeh
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

A lot of great comments the last few weeks. It does start to get confusing when you have a lot of people saying what seems like contradictory stuff. Then you start thinking too much and that will screw you up too.

Hope you had a great holiday, look forward to your future vids.
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Old 01-04-2008, 12:33 PM   #96
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Okay, I recorded the cleans differently with the hope that Greg Everett will comment.

Today I did a lot of drill works. I did Starr's Drill (power clean, followed by tall clean, followed by full clean) followed by a what I'm trying to call a "Tall clean.". Did 95x3 (95x3), 135x3 (95x3). Then I started recording things.

First recording is 185x3, 135x3 (tall cleans)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRqgYakOE40

Then recorded 225x3, 135x3 (tall cleans)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCOfxqzDHAM

Then recorded 265x2, 165x3 (tall cleans)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xT_DpWJ8Y0I

Then recorded 205x3, 135x3 (tall cleans)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FD2YKINkya4

My initial reactions are
1. my "C" during my 2nd pull is getting less pronounced, but it's still there. More evident in the 205x3 or last recording. Still a little "c", but I'm getting the bar closer to me than in the past. It's still not perfect, but it's better, so I'm very cool with that.
2. I think I could keep the bar closer to me on the first pull. I may be letting my hips rise too much. When I get into the really low hip position, I'm better than when I start with my hips higher.
3. I think I could still be getting more out of my 2nd pull and my shrug. I don't think I'm getting enough extension on the second pull.
4. the catch is still a little rough, but getting better.
5. still not stomping the feet.

Per Lincoln's advice, I've been watchings tons of youtube videos. Starting to figure it out. Finished both the Newton and Kono books. Going to reread some chapters over the weekend.

In reality, I think I'm faster than when I started. I know when I event train, I don't feel any different. But when I watch the videos, I can tell a difference. That's what I'm looking for.

Thanks in advance.

All the best,
Arden
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Old 01-04-2008, 03:36 PM   #97
Jake Oleander
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

i love this thread. for training what is the optimal lift; clean, power clean, power clean and then front squat? it seems theres so many different ways to do a clean.
i can definitely see huge improvement in your form arden, but your self analysis seems right on. i would think that the explosive shrug/jump will come along naturally once you start keeping the bar closer into your body (when its over your knees). definitely keep training! i know i will. the clean is an amazing exercise.
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Old 01-06-2008, 11:14 AM   #98
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

OK, I'm really just going to focus on the last video with the profile shot.

First, Lincoln's start position comment is good. When prepping for the lift, sit back wherever you're comfortable, but when you actually set the start position, get the shoulders at least slightly in front of the bar. There are some extremely successful lifters who have violated this (e.g. Ivan Chakarov and Stefan Botev), but both had relatively long legs and did it to pull with a more upright torso, knowing that they could swing the bar out around their knees and bring it back into position without causing a problem. This is a fairly risky technique and should be avoided if at all possible - I don't think your legs are long enough to warrant it. You'll notice too that even when you try to start with lower hips, when the pull really starts (i.e. bar has just left the floor), you let your hips move up and your shoulders forward anyway. This rocking motion will cause more problems than getting used to a slightly higher-hipped start will.

And a quick note to Kirez - The shoulders will be behind the bar at the END of the second pull. This must happen - but prior to the scoop, they need to be in front of the bar (or in exceptions like those mentioned above, possibly directly over it, and behind it for a moment as the bar passes the knees--but ignore those examples for now). If the shoulders are not behind the bar, the balance of the lifter-bar system will be too far forward on the feet.

To the actual video:

1. Start position already covered.

2. Rocking of hips already covered somewhat. The purpose of the 1st pull is primarily one of positioning. That is, the real point is to get you into the ideal position for the second pull, which will be the source of the overwhelming majority of the productive bar acceleration. bar speed is secondary to that. In other words, it's far more important for the 1st pull to be correct in terms of position than fast. You can't expect ideal positioning later in the lift if you don't have it earlier in the lift. Consistency here is key.

3. Looks like your knees are shifting forward a little early. Are you intentionally scooping? If so, quit it. It will happen naturally if you're positioned correctly and the speed is adequate. Because the bar contacts the thighs due to the narrower grip in the clean (as opposed to the crease of the hips in the snatch), forward movement of the knees has more of an effect on the horizontal position of the bar. That is, the lower on the thigh the bar is when you scoop, the farther forward it will be pushed. The farther forward it's pushed, the farther forward on the feet your center of mass will be. So, don't try to scoop. Just try to keep the bar in light contact with the thighs and extend your entire body vertically (not actually vertically, but I'll get to that).

4. You definitely do bump the bar out a bit with the legs--see #3, and add to that the idea that to counter this collision (which will happen to some degree even with a correct scoop), you need to 1) actively pull the bar back into yourself and 2) ensure the bar is still traveling up at a good pace. If 1 is not happening, the bar will swing away in response to the collision with the thighs. If 2 is not happening, the bar will swing out as well because the net vertical force isn't great enough to adequately buffer that sudden horizontal force. All that said, the distance the bar bumps out is not tremendous.

5. Bit of a slowdown as the bar passes your knees. We refer to 3 pulls of the lift, but understand very clearly this is only to facilitate analysis - the lift itself is NOT segmented in any way. The bar will accelerate more as you begin the 2nd pull, but it should not by any means slow down at any point after the lift has been initiated. That is, any change in speed must be positive. This is really common because people often believe (largely unconsciously) that the pause will allow them to really rip into the bar because it will increase the tension on it. But this is not the case. Just keep the tension going as you pull and accelerate the goddamn **** out of it once it gets to mid thigh.

5.5 Remember, the priority of the 1st pull is position, not speed. That doesn't mean we want it slow. We want it as fast as possible while still maintaining correct positioning. That will mean a slower 1st pull as you're learning, and it will progressively speed up as you technical consistency improves.

6. You're too strong for your own good at this point. The movement is not aggressive enough because you know you can rack the weight. We need a super rapid pop at the top and an immediate change of direction.

7. At the top, you need to get the shoulders back a little more. You reach approximately vertical with your torso - we actually need it leaned back slightly in order to keep the center of mass slightly behind the mid-foot. This is part of why your weight is on your toes when you receive the bar. The hips should not cross the vertical position, however. There are 2 basic ways to accomplish this - one is to tilt the entire body back slightly; the other is to have the legs remain essentially vertical and layback the torso. The former has to be controlled to prevent shifting the weight too far back and jumping backward excessively; the latter requires caution not to shove the hips forward past the final vertical plane.

7.5 On the second rep, you do actually jump backward slightly. This is totally fine, but you have to perform the rest of the lift accordingly--primarily, you have to anticipate it and bring the bar back with you so you don't receive on your toes.

8. Pretty good elbow speed when racking the bar. First thing I'm sure you noticed when receiving the clean, however, was that you were on your toes. You correct it quickly and recover well, but this doesn't work with heavier loads--they will just bury you and quite possible pop right off your shoulders.

9. Good FS position and movement. Could be improved slightly with a little more extension of the whole back, which will require a little more ankle flexibility. But not much.

Overall, really good clean. Like I think Lincoln said, this is a ton of detail to think about. Pick 1 or 2 points to focus on at a time (if 2, probably each during a different phase of the lift). You can think before the lift, a little during the first pull, and during the recovery--the rest should happen fast enough to preclude any consideration during the effort. When prepping for the lift, focus on the 1 point you want to address and work on only that in the lift. Preferably start with the first thing that occurs, like the start position, since things occurring earlier in the chain will effect those occurring later, and correcting one may help correct another.
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Old 01-06-2008, 11:42 AM   #99
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Wow....just wow. This is awesome. Thank you so much for all your time and effort. It's going to take me a while to digest all of it. But given my OCD nature, it will happen.

I'm going to train today. I think I'm going to focus on a few very important things.
1. set up
2. shoulders in front of the bar.
3. no slow down in first to second pull

Then, I'm also going to continue with my tall cleans superset, but I'm going to do them before I do my cleans from the floor.

The biggest thing for me I think, as you stated so well, is to be agressive. I think I can work on that without getting to overloaded.

I'm going to focus on, as Lincoln stated, a few things at at time.

Thanks to everyone for everything.

I record it, but I can't promise results overnight. But given my nature, it will be better this time next year.

All the best,
Arden



Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Everett View Post
OK, I'm really just going to focus on the last video with the profile shot.

First, Lincoln's start position comment is good. When prepping for the lift, sit back wherever you're comfortable, but when you actually set the start position, get the shoulders at least slightly in front of the bar. There are some extremely successful lifters who have violated this (e.g. Ivan Chakarov and Stefan Botev), but both had relatively long legs and did it to pull with a more upright torso, knowing that they could swing the bar out around their knees and bring it back into position without causing a problem. This is a fairly risky technique and should be avoided if at all possible - I don't think your legs are long enough to warrant it. You'll notice too that even when you try to start with lower hips, when the pull really starts (i.e. bar has just left the floor), you let your hips move up and your shoulders forward anyway. This rocking motion will cause more problems than getting used to a slightly higher-hipped start will.

And a quick note to Kirez - The shoulders will be behind the bar at the END of the second pull. This must happen - but prior to the scoop, they need to be in front of the bar (or in exceptions like those mentioned above, possibly directly over it, and behind it for a moment as the bar passes the knees--but ignore those examples for now). If the shoulders are not behind the bar, the balance of the lifter-bar system will be too far forward on the feet.

To the actual video:

1. Start position already covered.

2. Rocking of hips already covered somewhat. The purpose of the 1st pull is primarily one of positioning. That is, the real point is to get you into the ideal position for the second pull, which will be the source of the overwhelming majority of the productive bar acceleration. bar speed is secondary to that. In other words, it's far more important for the 1st pull to be correct in terms of position than fast. You can't expect ideal positioning later in the lift if you don't have it earlier in the lift. Consistency here is key.

3. Looks like your knees are shifting forward a little early. Are you intentionally scooping? If so, quit it. It will happen naturally if you're positioned correctly and the speed is adequate. Because the bar contacts the thighs due to the narrower grip in the clean (as opposed to the crease of the hips in the snatch), forward movement of the knees has more of an effect on the horizontal position of the bar. That is, the lower on the thigh the bar is when you scoop, the farther forward it will be pushed. The farther forward it's pushed, the farther forward on the feet your center of mass will be. So, don't try to scoop. Just try to keep the bar in light contact with the thighs and extend your entire body vertically (not actually vertically, but I'll get to that).

4. You definitely do bump the bar out a bit with the legs--see #3, and add to that the idea that to counter this collision (which will happen to some degree even with a correct scoop), you need to 1) actively pull the bar back into yourself and 2) ensure the bar is still traveling up at a good pace. If 1 is not happening, the bar will swing away in response to the collision with the thighs. If 2 is not happening, the bar will swing out as well because the net vertical force isn't great enough to adequately buffer that sudden horizontal force. All that said, the distance the bar bumps out is not tremendous.

5. Bit of a slowdown as the bar passes your knees. We refer to 3 pulls of the lift, but understand very clearly this is only to facilitate analysis - the lift itself is NOT segmented in any way. The bar will accelerate more as you begin the 2nd pull, but it should not by any means slow down at any point after the lift has been initiated. That is, any change in speed must be positive. This is really common because people often believe (largely unconsciously) that the pause will allow them to really rip into the bar because it will increase the tension on it. But this is not the case. Just keep the tension going as you pull and accelerate the goddamn **** out of it once it gets to mid thigh.

5.5 Remember, the priority of the 1st pull is position, not speed. That doesn't mean we want it slow. We want it as fast as possible while still maintaining correct positioning. That will mean a slower 1st pull as you're learning, and it will progressively speed up as you technical consistency improves.

6. You're too strong for your own good at this point. The movement is not aggressive enough because you know you can rack the weight. We need a super rapid pop at the top and an immediate change of direction.

7. At the top, you need to get the shoulders back a little more. You reach approximately vertical with your torso - we actually need it leaned back slightly in order to keep the center of mass slightly behind the mid-foot. This is part of why your weight is on your toes when you receive the bar. The hips should not cross the vertical position, however. There are 2 basic ways to accomplish this - one is to tilt the entire body back slightly; the other is to have the legs remain essentially vertical and layback the torso. The former has to be controlled to prevent shifting the weight too far back and jumping backward excessively; the latter requires caution not to shove the hips forward past the final vertical plane.

7.5 On the second rep, you do actually jump backward slightly. This is totally fine, but you have to perform the rest of the lift accordingly--primarily, you have to anticipate it and bring the bar back with you so you don't receive on your toes.

8. Pretty good elbow speed when racking the bar. First thing I'm sure you noticed when receiving the clean, however, was that you were on your toes. You correct it quickly and recover well, but this doesn't work with heavier loads--they will just bury you and quite possible pop right off your shoulders.

9. Good FS position and movement. Could be improved slightly with a little more extension of the whole back, which will require a little more ankle flexibility. But not much.

Overall, really good clean. Like I think Lincoln said, this is a ton of detail to think about. Pick 1 or 2 points to focus on at a time (if 2, probably each during a different phase of the lift). You can think before the lift, a little during the first pull, and during the recovery--the rest should happen fast enough to preclude any consideration during the effort. When prepping for the lift, focus on the 1 point you want to address and work on only that in the lift. Preferably start with the first thing that occurs, like the start position, since things occurring earlier in the chain will effect those occurring later, and correcting one may help correct another.
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Old 01-06-2008, 02:20 PM   #100
Jason Lollar
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Just wanted to add a "Thank You" for Greg's comments. There are a lot of us following this thread that have/are/will continue to learn a ton from this.

Arden,
Keep up the good work. I'm presently resting my right knee (patellar issues) but I'm soaking up the info and learning right alongside you.

Best,
wilson

P.S. More profile vids. And I'd like to see you practice a 3-Position Clean with very light weights (i.e. 65-95lbs). Start high. Here's a W/F/Safe demo. Thanks again Greg.

http://www.performancemenu.com/resou.../3posClean.mov
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