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Old 11-28-2007, 09:08 AM   #1
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Hello All,
I thank everyone in advance for their comments as I know there are several really knowledgable folk on this board.

My main impetus for getting into oly lifting is to get quicker for my sport. I have a serious explosive speed deficit. I can deadlift a lot. But as of 9 weeks ago, I tapped out at 275 on the power clean. Moreover, 9 weeks ago, i could not front squat with my hands on the bar.

My coach, Randy Hauer, has been very patient with me. I'm starting to go on a quest for knowledge so I can show him some progress. I've come a long way in 9 weeks, and I'm in this for the long term, but I want to get rid of the really bad stuff now. If that makes any sense.

Here's clips from today's session. All squat cleans or power cleans with front squats 225x2, 255x5, 225x5 hang clean, and 205x5 hang clean. Then clean pulls with 275 and 295.

here's the link.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sWxdKyXCmHcWFS

Thanks in advance to guys like Lincoln, Greg, Veronica and anyone else who might want to comment. I'm trying to increase my knowledge. To do that, I need to talk about it more.

all the best,
Arden

Last edited by Lynne Pitts : 12-02-2007 at 05:17 PM. Reason: ALL LINKS MUST SPECIFY IF WORK/FAMILY SAFE
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:03 AM   #2
Yoon Sohn
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Hey Arden,
Strong work! A bit hard to see, but it looks like the barbell is a bit far out in front during your 2nd pull (see pic). Do you ever experience thigh brush?

This was one of my biggest problems (keeping the bar close) for a long time. After a lot of frustration, my coach had me take a step back and, with an empty barbell, find the position I could apply the most power for the 2nd pull...I found that if I kept the barbell close, it would be brushing against my mid-thigh. Then it was a lot of drilling from the hang (40-60% of max clean) and then from the floor...each time trying to hit that particular position. It's really amazing the difference that keeping the bar close makes, as 100kg now feels like 80kg used to feel like (instead of the other way around). I also lost the early arm bend, which made a huge difference.

Others' experiences and advice may vary, but that's just one thing that worked for me.

Also, you're rocking/swinging on your hang cleans, but it looks like you're getting a good extension...just whip those elbows around FASTER and HIGHER!
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:29 AM   #3
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Yoon. thanks so much.

You are absolutely right. Thanks for pausing that clip. I don't have the technical ability. I do need to develop some thigh brush. That would enable me to keep my shoulders in front of the bar for longer which is something else I need to work on big time with second pull. That was the main reason for doing the hang cleans. I'm going to add more of them with the weights you've suggested.

I'll definitely whip those elbows a lot faster. Higher will take me longer. If you would have seen my rack 9 weeks ago, you would completely understand. Too many years of curls for girls.

Thanks again.

All the best,
Arden
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoon Sohn View Post
Hey Arden,
Strong work! A bit hard to see, but it looks like the barbell is a bit far out in front during your 2nd pull (see pic). Do you ever experience thigh brush?

This was one of my biggest problems (keeping the bar close) for a long time. After a lot of frustration, my coach had me take a step back and, with an empty barbell, find the position I could apply the most power for the 2nd pull...I found that if I kept the barbell close, it would be brushing against my mid-thigh. Then it was a lot of drilling from the hang (40-60% of max clean) and then from the floor...each time trying to hit that particular position. It's really amazing the difference that keeping the bar close makes, as 100kg now feels like 80kg used to feel like (instead of the other way around). I also lost the early arm bend, which made a huge difference.

Others' experiences and advice may vary, but that's just one thing that worked for me.

Also, you're rocking/swinging on your hang cleans, but it looks like you're getting a good extension...just whip those elbows around FASTER and HIGHER!
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Old 11-28-2007, 10:46 AM   #4
Brandon Oto
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

You're starting the bar too far forward. Your shins are angled forward sharply, which is putting the bar (as it rests against your shins) forward of the mid-foot. You seem to let it come backwards as your knees straighten, which brings it into line, but it'd be better to start in the right plane.

Some of your second pulls look like power shrugs more than anything -- i.e. not transferring the power from the triple extension so much as muscling it into place. This may be partially a result of catching it so high; it might be impossible to get under it without adding some more muscle.

Careful O-lifting with straps, I'm not sure how easily you could bail.

Out of curiosity, why are you doing power cleans? Do you just find that you can't get under it any deeper with your current speed?
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Old 11-28-2007, 11:37 AM   #5
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Thanks Brandon.

What's the triple extension?

I'm doing the power cleans until I get more comfortable pulling myself under the bar. It's the same reason I'm doing power snatches then OHS, instead of doing a true snatch. For some reason I have a mental block in regards to catching the weight at a low position or on the way down. It's much less than it was 9 weeks ago, but, as I said, I have a long way to go.

Gotcha on the set up. This is one of my first sessions where my hips weren't rising faster than my shoulders. Something finally clicked after all those years of deadlifting. As I understand it, the idea is to keep the bar on the same path from the time it leaves the ground until it gets to the shoulders or catch position, correct? You basically try to contort your body around that bar path?

Thanks so much.

All the best,
arden

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon Oto View Post
You're starting the bar too far forward. Your shins are angled forward sharply, which is putting the bar (as it rests against your shins) forward of the mid-foot. You seem to let it come backwards as your knees straighten, which brings it into line, but it'd be better to start in the right plane.

Some of your second pulls look like power shrugs more than anything -- i.e. not transferring the power from the triple extension so much as muscling it into place. This may be partially a result of catching it so high; it might be impossible to get under it without adding some more muscle.

Careful O-lifting with straps, I'm not sure how easily you could bail.

Out of curiosity, why are you doing power cleans? Do you just find that you can't get under it any deeper with your current speed?
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Old 11-28-2007, 11:57 AM   #6
Brandon Oto
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arden Cogar Jr. View Post
What's the triple extension?
The dynamic of the second pull: knees, hips, ankles. For some reason they don't include the shoulders here (I guess because it's technically flexion rather than extension); that would make it a quadruple extension...

Some people, usually at the elite level, don't like the ankle extension, and stay on their heels. Either way, it's essentially a powerful jump perpendicular to the weight, and you should more or less know how to jump already.

Quote:
I'm doing the power cleans until I get more comfortable pulling myself under the bar. It's the same reason I'm doing power snatches then OHS, instead of doing a true snatch. For some reason I have a mental block in regards to catching the weight at a low position or on the way down. It's much less than it was 9 weeks ago, but, as I said, I have a long way to go.
Interesting. Maybe one of the others here has a suggestion for breaking you through this. Actually, Yoon's suggestion of really drilling the elbow whip may help; if you're thinking about getting your elbows around fast and the bar into the full rack position, there will come a point when you can't do that without dropping your body, and if you're otherwise positioned properly it may happen automatically. Maybe.

Quote:
Gotcha on the set up. This is one of my first sessions where my hips weren't rising faster than my shoulders. Something finally clicked after all those years of deadlifting. As I understand it, the idea is to keep the bar on the same path from the time it leaves the ground until it gets to the shoulders or catch position, correct? You basically try to contort your body around that bar path?
Basically. It usually dips toward you a little bit at the waist. The only "contorting" per se is when the knees extend to clear the bar, but you do that on a deadlift as well.

Obviously you can swing it out forward some on the second pull, if you're strong enough to pull it back in at the top of the arc. But not at a maximal weight. (I do this because my thighs bump the bar forward, and some people do it because they're reverse curling it. Either way it's not necessarily killer, but a bit of a drag.)
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Old 11-28-2007, 01:07 PM   #7
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Thanks Brandon.

I think you're right about pulling myself under the bar. It's going to take time. I'm finally building up my tolerance on front squatting with the clean grip. As of a few weeks ago, I couldn't hold 315 and go into the hole. i can do it for sets of 5 now. Slowly but surely.

I agree with you, it's best to keep the bar on the proper path all the way from the floor to the rack. I may be fairly strong, but as soon as I get a lot of weight on the bar, that bar path keeps me from getting under the weight. I end up catching it on my upper chest and jumping forward, and stopping the descent until I get the back popped onto my front delts.

In time.

Thanks for everything.

All the best,
Arden

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon Oto View Post
The dynamic of the second pull: knees, hips, ankles. For some reason they don't include the shoulders here (I guess because it's technically flexion rather than extension); that would make it a quadruple extension...

Some people, usually at the elite level, don't like the ankle extension, and stay on their heels. Either way, it's essentially a powerful jump perpendicular to the weight, and you should more or less know how to jump already.



Interesting. Maybe one of the others here has a suggestion for breaking you through this. Actually, Yoon's suggestion of really drilling the elbow whip may help; if you're thinking about getting your elbows around fast and the bar into the full rack position, there will come a point when you can't do that without dropping your body, and if you're otherwise positioned properly it may happen automatically. Maybe.



Basically. It usually dips toward you a little bit at the waist. The only "contorting" per se is when the knees extend to clear the bar, but you do that on a deadlift as well.

Obviously you can swing it out forward some on the second pull, if you're strong enough to pull it back in at the top of the arc. But not at a maximal weight. (I do this because my thighs bump the bar forward, and some people do it because they're reverse curling it. Either way it's not necessarily killer, but a bit of a drag.)
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Old 11-28-2007, 01:47 PM   #8
Jason M Struck
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

some of the reps you also appear to receive the clean 'leaning back'. ie torso is not upright or forward, but a little extended such that you're shoulders are moving behinds your hips.

I had the same problem as you as far as low catches. I did exactly what you are doing, the power versions followed quickly by a descent into front or overhead squats. I then transitioned in to high hang versions with light weights were I tried to whip under the bar as fast as possible. A lot of practice with this, and I started catching lower and lower.
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Old 11-28-2007, 01:49 PM   #9
Arden Cogar Jr.
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason M Struck View Post
some of the reps you also appear to receive the clean 'leaning back'. ie torso is not upright or forward, but a little extended such that you're shoulders are moving behinds your hips.
Thanks so much. I never noticed that.

In essence, one must remained totally centered. I think I understand.

All the best,
Arden
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Old 11-28-2007, 02:05 PM   #10
David Aguasca
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Re: Clean and Squat Clean - I've got a long way to go

i noticed the same thing that Yoon pointed out, the bar position.

for example, during the multiple reps of hang power cleans, your shoulders were above or even behind the bar...you should lower the bar down the thighs by sticking your butt back...

WFS link of casey burgener transitioning:
http://mikesgym.org/wod/images/pullcasey.jpg

look at where his shoulders are, and look at where the bar is...
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