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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 01-30-2008, 04:43 AM   #1
Jonathan Thomas Powers
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Trouble Teaching Cleans

I work at a semi Globo gym currently and the population for the most part doesn't care about Crossfit or Oly lifting they just want to feel like they go to the best trainer or that by paying someone that will be enough to ensure their success.

Consequently, when we get to the cleans I almost always run into a snag. By this time I have taught them Back Squat, Front Squat (with propper grip), Deadlift, and usually a Jump Shrug. So they have all the tools they need to make the jump to cleans but these people (most middle aged women) show little effort when it comes to moving the bar with the Hips and a powerfull Shrug so inevitably they have to reverse curl the bar up to their shoulders and land in some version of a bent knee military press in front of the neck with their feet way to close together. It's ugly. I've tried stepping away from it, coming back etc. Point is these women have been with me a while. So it's either face the cleans and progress or stay stagnant with the same material they've been using.

Yesterday I tried keeping a client who has had particular problems close to the wall so she couldn't curl the bar and it got better. Still almost all arm mov't though.

If I could I would just take the handfull of these women who wan't to look like they are doing the challenging stuff I've got everyone else doing but not really put in the work to get it right, and put them on some easy workout of machines and bicep curls. It just goes against my morals and drive to provide great training. Secondly, I know there has got to be an easier way and I'm not finding it.
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Old 01-30-2008, 05:35 AM   #2
Susie Rosenberg
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Re: Trouble Teaching Cleans

Doing the Burgener warmup with PVC, then a light bar helped me a lot. Doing medicine ball cleans helps, too. I found DBs helpful in figuring out how to whip my elbows around for the catch. I'm still working on it!

This is a movement that just takes a long time to develop, so it takes patience and a variety of approaches.

Susie
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Old 01-30-2008, 07:30 AM   #3
H. Giovanni Salazar
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Re: Trouble Teaching Cleans

I agree with Susie. Take the Burgener Warmup, and break each movement down at a time so that they know where their positioning lies. What I mean is that most people don't know how to hold their upper body rigid or stable for long periods of time. Holding that back extension even if the person is bent at the hips, he/she will lose tension and begin to roll shoulders foward and abs relax.

Teaching this first step in keeping an upright and stable midline is primary, followed by learning to jump without a bar. Teach them to hold midline stabilization on Squat therapy drills, follow it up with the dip drills (push-press vision) and then teach them to jump from the hold/scoop position. *Hands on thighs, arms fully extended, chest up, rib cage down, low back neutral and have them jump as high as possible by exploding and having their hips open on the jump.

Once they learn to feel that sensation, begin to introduce the shoulder aspect of the Burgener warmup to them by bringing shoulders to ears aggressively.

Then give them a bar, pvc/broom stick to practice the first two movements until they get the hang of using hips and shoulders before proceeding to step three, which is the high elbows and shoulders to ears.

It will take time, and with diligence you will win them out. Patience here is of paramount concern for safety is critical and success will follow.

Hope this helps.
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Old 01-30-2008, 07:59 AM   #4
Leonid Soubbotine
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Re: Trouble Teaching Cleans

How did you learn to coach cleans?

I teach snatch and clean all the time to our clients and it takes time yet certainly it doesn't sound as bad as your situation.

How long after FS and BS do you introduce cleans?
I actually do not teach BS to new clients. We work OHS and FS and Back squat is easy after that (CF uses very little time with bs and learning it in the beginning and not doing it for another 4-5 weeks is close to a waste of time).

After 4-8 weeks of training - learning snatch and cleans becomes fairly easy since the foundation layed down by FS, OHS, DB snatch, deadlift, sdhp and etc is solid enough that motor patterns are there and positions required to clean/snatch are solid.

I really like Greg E. progression that we just learned last weekend at his Certification. Easier to teach than Burg warm up and clients get it quicker.

A great level of fitness can be achieved without cleans.
Mark Rippetoe makes a great point on that (about a large group of school kids but it's very relevant here): clean is hard to coach and hard to perform. It's often better to lay a solid foundation of fitness and strength via basic barbell lifts: Squat, dl, press, bench. Clients will improve just as much. They'll be happy!
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:47 AM   #5
Michael Thornton
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Re: Trouble Teaching Cleans

I have struggled with learning cleans. Last Saturday at Rogue Fitness Bill had us doing cleans with a 20lb med ball. Before the WOD, he spent a lot of time working with the class on cleaning it properly. This really helped me. It is much easier to learn with the med ball, and now that I have the right "feel" for it, my cleans using barbells is much better. Maybe this is a strategy you could use with your clients.
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Old 01-30-2008, 12:56 PM   #6
Lisbeth Darsh
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Re: Trouble Teaching Cleans

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonathan Thomas Powers View Post
So they have all the tools they need to make the jump to cleans but these people (most middle aged women) show little effort when it comes to moving the bar with the Hips and a powerfull Shrug so inevitably they have to reverse curl the bar up to their shoulders and land in some version of a bent knee military press in front of the neck with their feet way to close together. It's ugly. I've tried stepping away from it, coming back etc. Point is these women have been with me a while. So it's either face the cleans and progress or stay stagnant with the same material they've been using.
Jonathan, take a ride down I-84 to CrossFit Watertown and I'll show you exactly how I do this with "midde-aged women" -- maybe because I resemble that remark! But it's all good -- just PM me for more info.
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Last edited by Lisbeth Darsh : 01-30-2008 at 01:00 PM.
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Old 01-30-2008, 02:51 PM   #7
Wade Smith
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Re: Trouble Teaching Cleans

I started this reply post this morning, so apologies if this has already been said; it's now about 1:30pm.

I found that learning/practicing medicine ball cleans with the Dynamax ball (20lb) was extremely helpful in getting the feel of the barbell clean. The below (wfs) videos from Coach are very helpful in getting both the technique & form down AS WELL AS the reason why to learn cleans (the third video below about lifting odd objects). Now I have a better understanding. Maybe these videos will help your clients.

http://media.crossfit.com/cf-video/C...t_MBCleans.wmv

http://media.crossfit.com/cf-video/C...arnMBclean.wmv

http://media.crossfit.com/cf-video/C...odd-object.wmv
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