I experimented with power cleaning the bar for over head press and front squats this week.
I felt way more explosive doing the press & front squat AFTER I cleaned the bar as opposed to lifting it off the rack. It actually felt a lot easier. And for a couple of days, my traps were sore as hell.
I got this idea from Zach Even-Esh's blog. He wrote:
I remember when I trained at Diamond Gym & began power cleaning the bar from the ground before every set of military presses and my back, traps, shoulders and arms got seriously THICK in a very short time period.
That sound's like a pretty damn good idea! It also seems like a manlier way to lift weights.
Cleaning the Bar for the Front Squat
For the front squat, getting the bar in position is the same as a regular power clean. ie. the bar will be racked on your front deltoids with your elbows raised & pointed forward.
Cleaning the Bar for the Over Head Press
Cleaning the bar for the over head press is different compared to cleaning the bar for the front squat (at least for me). My press my grip is wider than I normally use for power cleans, so I needed to clean the bar with a wider grip.
Also, because I'm pressing it up, I don't rack with my elbows up. I rack it with my elbows down, and I'm in a position where I'm ready to press the bar over my head.
It looks something like this (note this is not me; it's some strong dude from Singapore):
I won't be cleaning the bar for overhead presses during intensity days (where I try to hit a 1,2 or 3 rep max). But for volume (5x5) & recover days (3x5) I will.
Anyways, enough about cleaning and check out these links:
- Christine aka "thecookiemonster" gives her thoughts on powerlifting
- Charles Poliquin explains how to increase your squat, and gives me some more reasons to consider (finally) taking whey protein
- Brent Contreras shares 50 commandments that should be obeyed in the gym: http://bretcontreras.com/2011/08/50-commandments-commercial-gym-etiquette/
Keep lifting, keep progressing & have a great weekend!