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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 08-10-2008, 08:11 AM   #1
Kevin L Kibbe
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Elbow/wrist flexibility and a pull up question

Hello All,

I am a relatively new crossfitter. A friend of mine turned me on to it recently and after years of working out with regular weight training etc. I thought it was stupid for about the first week... Then BAM!!! I was hooked. So anyway on to my questions…

I am in Afghanistan and trying to teach myself many of these Olympic lifts, and power-lifts by watching the videos and such from the site. My first problem is in the clean/front-squat/thruster category and concerns my ability or lack there of to rack the weight on the front of the shoulders. I just can't seem to get my arms to bend how they have to, to let this happen. Are there any elbow/wrist flexibility exercises that can help this issue? This really affects me during thrusters where I end up thrusting up in a kinda front squat and the pressing the bar up, vice thrusting the bar up with body movement and then getting under it. Need help with this. I have tried broom sticks to weight and I just can't seem to get my arms where they should be.

The next issue is something that I wasn't really aware of until I thought to take a picture of me during a pull up. When doing dead hangs, I pull up into an almost 45 degree angle. Jumping pull-ups result in a similar movement on the way down. I have tried crossing my legs, bent at the knee and tried arching my back to make them hang further behind me, but this doesn't seem to help much....if at all. Any advice as to the places I may be going wrong would be greatly appreciated. I am in love with crossfit, and only look forward to getting better at these movements.
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Old 08-10-2008, 06:00 PM   #2
Paul Kudela
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Re: Elbow/wrist flexibility and a pull up question

Kevin, I am having similar problems with wrist/elbow inflexibility when doing front squats and cleans. Interested to see the replies to your thread.
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Old 08-10-2008, 10:50 PM   #3
Shane Steinert-Threlkeld
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Re: Elbow/wrist flexibility and a pull up question

Same problems here. I can't quite get the bar into a real rack position and always end up supporting it way too much with my wrists/arms and not my body.
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Old 08-11-2008, 06:20 AM   #4
Moran Bentzur
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Re: Elbow/wrist flexibility and a pull up question

Guys, the solution to the wrist/arms flexibility is just to keep working on it. I think it was Rippetoe that said he has has never seen a person unable to acheive the rack position with enough practice, and he has seen a few lifters.
My tips: lose the broomstick. Load the bar with enough weight to be heavy but not impossible to hold (for me 135 lbs is good). While the bar is racked (in the cage or supports) insert one arm and force it into position. Working on each arm separately is easier cuz you can shift your body angle to help you into position. After a couple of these on each side, try to rack the bar in the proper rack position. You don't have to have your whole hand around the bar. Use a couple of finger tips at first to control the bar, the weight should be supported by your shoulders. Rack the bar for 15 secs and put it down back then repeat two more times after a short rest. Do this at the end of WODs and with time flexibility will improve and you will be able to grip the bar securely.

I'll let someone else tackle the pullup question. My pullups are ugly but they get my chin over the bar
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Last edited by Moran Bentzur : 08-11-2008 at 06:23 AM.
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Old 08-11-2008, 12:54 PM   #5
Kevin L Kibbe
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Re: Elbow/wrist flexibility and a pull up question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moran Bentzur View Post
My tips: lose the broomstick. Load the bar with enough weight to be heavy but not impossible to hold (for me 135 lbs is good). While the bar is racked (in the cage or supports) insert one arm and force it into position. Working on each arm separately is easier cuz you can shift your body angle to help you into position.
Thanks I will give that a try and see if it helps any. I am hoping that I will be capable, cause man front squats suck when you are trying to hold the weight with your arms....LOL. Any stretches etc that could be suggested would be great too. That's where the broom stick came in... thoughts were somewhere along the lines of dislocates but for the racked position.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Moran Bentzur View Post
I'll let someone else tackle the pullup question. My pullups are ugly but they get my chin over the bar
Oh I am getting my chin above the bar otherwise I don't count it....but I guess you would say my pull-ups are ugly too. Haven't gotten the coordination down for kips yet, so still end up many WOD doing jumping pull ups. If and when someone had an idea to help with this problem, I am more concerned with getting myself into a more vertical position. I think that this angle of accent/decent, when not intentioned is one of the reasons the kip still eludes me.
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