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  1. #1
    Registered User Big Ed 13's Avatar
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    275 lb Clean and Jerk

    I have been talking to my football coach and trying to gauge what lifts they do for the school weighlifting meets and all they do is bench and clean. The first meet is in March but I was looking for more of a long term program to help increase my Clean and Jerk as well as bench for my Senior year. I have only done cleans a few times and the most I have military pressed is 135(strict form). My coach said to be competitive in the 180 lb class I should bench around 300-315 and clean around 275.

    My stats as of now are
    Bench-205(2 weeks ago)
    Squat-255(1 month ago)
    DL-285(1 month ago)
    Clean and jerk-135(never tried more)

    So any advice on a routine that would work in Bench and Clean and really help with strength?
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  2. #2
    Nashville Strongman freeride88's Avatar
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    I don't have a lot of advice about the Olympic lifts or their counterparts, but I know that when I played high school football, a 275lbs power clean would have put you in the TOP of our lifting class. In fact, the kid I know that PCed exactly that in high school was a 230lbs serious athlete. There's no way that at your weight, you NEED a 275lbs clean to be competitive. I don't power clean much more than that myself, although it isn't a lift I train regularly.

    Also, the only kid on my football team that was benching 315lbs nearly weighed that much. There's no way there are many 150lbs kids benching double bodyweight in high school.
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  3. #3
    Dysfunctional Strength Entkommen115's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by freeride88 View Post
    I don't have a lot of advice about the Olympic lifts or their counterparts, but I know that when I played high school football, a 275lbs power clean would have put you in the TOP of our lifting class. In fact, the kid I know that PCed exactly that in high school was a 230lbs serious athlete. There's no way that at your weight, you NEED a 275lbs clean to be competitive. I don't power clean much more than that myself, although it isn't a lift I train regularly.

    Also, the only kid on my football team that was benching 315lbs nearly weighed that much. There's no way there are many 150lbs kids benching double bodyweight in high school.
    True that, I'm not even sure if anyone at my high school could have cleaned 275 besides the strength coach.
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    Originally Posted by Big Ed 13 View Post
    So any advice on a routine that would work in Bench and Clean and really help with strength?
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    ASC Pro Strongman the_pupil's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Big Ed 13 View Post
    I have been talking to my football coach and trying to gauge what lifts they do for the school weighlifting meets and all they do is bench and clean. The first meet is in March but I was looking for more of a long term program to help increase my Clean and Jerk as well as bench for my Senior year. I have only done cleans a few times and the most I have military pressed is 135(strict form). My coach said to be competitive in the 180 lb class I should bench around 300-315 and clean around 275.

    My stats as of now are
    Bench-205(2 weeks ago)
    Squat-255(1 month ago)
    DL-285(1 month ago)
    Clean and jerk-135(never tried more)

    So any advice on a routine that would work in Bench and Clean and really help with strength?
    IMO, Power Clean is determined alot by athletic ability. It requires a good amount of strength, cordination, flexibility, and of course technique. At your weight I would say a 225 PC would be pretty good, but if you have the flexibilty and coordination to drop under the bar like olympic lifters do then you would be amazed at how much more you can power clean. In HS I could PC 255-275 without dropping underneath the bar, but if I dropped down I could get 315 and then just front squat it up, makes a big difference. There was a thread on here not too long ago showing text book form for clean and jerk, might try searching for it.

    As for your Bench, it would probably go up significantly with a little training on how to bench like a powerlifter. For the longest time my bench was stuck in the mid 300's but as soon as a buddy showed me how to bench like a powerlifter it went over 400 rapidly. If you can strict military press 135, 225 on bench should be easy with proper PLing form.
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  7. #7
    I AM IRATE SoaringSwine's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by the_pupil View Post
    IMO, Power Clean is determined alot by athletic ability. It requires a good amount of strength, cordination, flexibility, and of course technique. At your weight I would say a 225 PC would be pretty good, but if you have the flexibilty and coordination to drop under the bar like olympic lifters do then you would be amazed at how much more you can power clean. In HS I could PC 255-275 without dropping underneath the bar, but if I dropped down I could get 315 and then just front squat it up, makes a big difference. There was a thread on here not too long ago showing text book form for clean and jerk, might try searching for it.

    As for your Bench, it would probably go up significantly with a little training on how to bench like a powerlifter. For the longest time my bench was stuck in the mid 300's but as soon as a buddy showed me how to bench like a powerlifter it went over 400 rapidly. If you can strict military press 135, 225 on bench should be easy with proper PLing form.

    Wouldn't that just be a clean?
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  8. #8
    Nashville Strongman freeride88's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SoaringSwine View Post
    Wouldn't that just be a clean?
    Yes, if the contest event was a power clean, it wouldn't be legal.
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  9. #9
    ASC Pro Strongman the_pupil's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SoaringSwine View Post
    Wouldn't that just be a clean?
    Yes, but I was talking about is the difference between a true Olympic style clean and a Brute Strength clean which is alot more commonly seen and used with football players. Not everyone has the flexibility to drop below the bar and catch it.

    For Example, the below video is of me and because I have lost flexibility in my wrist and shoulders over the past few years I can not completely drop below the bar anymore. This forces me to catch the bar at a much higher point in the lift.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eXliwTuN5xI

    Then if you watch this video, you can see the guy catching the weight at a rock bottom front squat level.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ2vTRSXKsg
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  10. #10
    ASC Pro Strongman the_pupil's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by freeride88 View Post
    Yes, if the contest event was a power clean, it wouldn't be legal.
    I would know nothing about the rules for that. I have never even heard of schools doing meets with bench and power cleans.
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  11. #11
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    Originally Posted by Big Ed 13 View Post
    I have been talking to my football coach and trying to gauge what lifts they do for the school weighlifting meets and all they do is bench and clean. The first meet is in March but I was looking for more of a long term program to help increase my Clean and Jerk as well as bench for my Senior year. I have only done cleans a few times and the most I have military pressed is 135(strict form). My coach said to be competitive in the 180 lb class I should bench around 300-315 and clean around 275.

    My stats as of now are
    Bench-205(2 weeks ago)
    Squat-255(1 month ago)
    DL-285(1 month ago)
    Clean and jerk-135(never tried more)

    So any advice on a routine that would work in Bench and Clean and really help with strength?
    A few things:

    1. Cleaning and jerking are just like any skill - diligent practice and solid coaching will mean long-term improvement and success. If you want to get good at clean and jerks, do clean and jerks.
    2. Military press is extremely loosely correlated with jerking power. Jerking power is generated by the legs and hip drive, while pressing is done with the shoulders. Just as an example, I never did shoulder presses on a regular basis, and my best was around 120lbs, while I could jerk over 100lbs more. I started pressing and built up to 150lbs, but my jerk didn't improve at all.
    3. Bench pressing is contraindicated for Olympic lifters, unless you already have very flexible shoulders and do an equal amount of back work such as chinups/rows.

    That being said, a balanced program will include a fair amount of technique work involving the empty bar and very light weights, along with your regular strength training. You'll build the weight slowly over time.

    If you want to post your current clean and jerk form in a vid in the Olympic lifting section, you'll get tons of feedback and we can put together a program for you based on what we see. Without knowing exactly what your specific technique problems are, we won't know what exercises to prescribe and where to direct you.

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  12. #12
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    Originally Posted by the_pupil View Post
    Yes, but I was talking about is the difference between a true Olympic style clean and a Brute Strength clean which is alot more commonly seen and used with football players. Not everyone has the flexibility to drop below the bar and catch it.

    For Example, the below video is of me and because I have lost flexibility in my wrist and shoulders over the past few years I can not completely drop below the bar anymore. This forces me to catch the bar at a much higher point in the lift.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eXliwTuN5xI

    Then if you watch this video, you can see the guy catching the weight at a rock bottom front squat level.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZ2vTRSXKsg
    Dude, you look plenty flexible to receive a clean properly. Can you not do front squats at all? If not, why not? You've got great back flexibility and positions, and your jerk is excellent. Everything stays tight and you move extremely well. Your receiving position for the powerclean is ghastly, though! If nothing else, improving the receiving position will add at least 15 lbs to your current max. Something like this, with your elbows whipped around fast, an upright torso, no leaning back, and slightly bent knees:

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    April of last year, my football coach for my senior year of high school asked me to come lift at a meet with some players from the team (I wasn't on the football team). I was in the 160-170 lb weight class, and there were kids cleaning and benching well over 275 lbs. If I remember right, the kid that took first place in my weight class benched 305 or 310, and cleaned 310. It was ridiculous. Some of those meets, there are some truly monster kids . Train hard and smart, get your technique up, and in a few years think about competing.
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    Originally Posted by madaozeki View Post
    Dude, you look plenty flexible to receive a clean properly. Can you not do front squats at all? If not, why not? You've got great back flexibility and positions, and your jerk is excellent. Everything stays tight and you move extremely well. Your receiving position for the powerclean is ghastly, though! If nothing else, improving the receiving position will add at least 15 lbs to your current max. Something like this, with your elbows whipped around fast, an upright torso, no leaning back, and slightly bent knees:
    When I was in HS and College I could do it almost exactly like the vid you posted. But once I stopped doing cleans for several years I lost flexibility in either my wrists, delts, for back(not sure where exactly). If I try to catch it on my delts with elbows whipped forward, I end up with only the tip of my index finger left on the bar. The other fingers will roll off, then I cant do the jerk because its too hard to recover. I do front squats but not with a clean grip.
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    Originally Posted by Big Ed 13 View Post
    I have been talking to my football coach and trying to gauge what lifts they do for the school weighlifting meets and all they do is bench and clean. The first meet is in March but I was looking for more of a long term program to help increase my Clean and Jerk as well as bench for my Senior year. I have only done cleans a few times and the most I have military pressed is 135(strict form). My coach said to be competitive in the 180 lb class I should bench around 300-315 and clean around 275.

    My stats as of now are
    Bench-205(2 weeks ago)
    Squat-255(1 month ago)
    DL-285(1 month ago)
    Clean and jerk-135(never tried more)

    So any advice on a routine that would work in Bench and Clean and really help with strength?
    What's up man. I was in your shoes 10 years ago. Those are the same lifts we did in our meets as well.
    For your bench... i suggest you 5x5 work with your reps and sets with about 85% of your max. Another good exercise is isometric ladders if its available at your gym. If you dont know what that is PM me and i'll give you a break down. Also you can do paused repititions. This is when your using about 95% of your max (again if you dont know what this is PM me)

    For you clean and jerk... do a 5x5 with your dead lift routine or pyrimad starting with about 60% all the way to 100% 10,8,6,4,2, and 1. You can also do that on your bench days as well if you want to switch it up.
    Another exercise is upright rows, this will help you get thru mid way thur your clean. I suggest a 4x8 routine with heavy weight but be careful because they can do a number on your shoulders.
    Depending on how you do your clean whether you can clean it up to your chest naturally or you have to drop down, i suggest doing front squats that way when you go for those heavy lifts you can control the weight and be able to bring it back up for your jerk. 5x5 will work with those as well. If your not use to them drop a set and add a couple of reps to your front squats. These are very hard at first.
    For your jerk... Do a lot of controlled front press exercises with the bar. I would say 4x6 controlled (with heavy weight) and then do 2 more using your legs to press it up. Keep in mind you have to cheat a little on your form, but in the meet this his how you will be doing them

    Keep in mind, usually every lifter in these meets knows how to bench press but not all of them know how to clean and jerk. You will be suprised to see how many people dont know what they are doing when it comes to clean and jerk.
    Make sure you get you clean and jerk down pat. This will be your bread and butter because alot of people wont be able to compete with you if you do.
    Practice them on you back days after you dead lifts at least the clean part.
    It's not a sprint, its a marathon
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    Originally Posted by freeride88 View Post
    I don't have a lot of advice about the Olympic lifts or their counterparts, but I know that when I played high school football, a 275lbs power clean would have put you in the TOP of our lifting class. In fact, the kid I know that PCed exactly that in high school was a 230lbs serious athlete. There's no way that at your weight, you NEED a 275lbs clean to be competitive. I don't power clean much more than that myself, although it isn't a lift I train regularly.

    Also, the only kid on my football team that was benching 315lbs nearly weighed that much. There's no way there are many 150lbs kids benching double bodyweight in high school.
    If you talk to many high school lifters, then almost all of them are benching double body weight and squatting 500lbs!


    On a serious note - I agree with freeride here. A 275 C&J at your weight in high school would actually be a hell of a lift.
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    mezzie madaozeki's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jtrain71 View Post
    What's up man. I was in your shoes 10 years ago. Those are the same lifts we did in our meets as well.
    For your bench... i suggest you 5x5 work with your reps and sets with about 85% of your max. Another good exercise is isometric ladders if its available at your gym. If you dont know what that is PM me and i'll give you a break down. Also you can do paused repititions. This is when your using about 95% of your max (again if you dont know what this is PM me)

    For you clean and jerk... do a 5x5 with your dead lift routine or pyrimad starting with about 60% all the way to 100% 10,8,6,4,2, and 1. You can also do that on your bench days as well if you want to switch it up.
    Another exercise is upright rows, this will help you get thru mid way thur your clean. I suggest a 4x8 routine with heavy weight but be careful because they can do a number on your shoulders.
    Depending on how you do your clean whether you can clean it up to your chest naturally or you have to drop down, i suggest doing front squats that way when you go for those heavy lifts you can control the weight and be able to bring it back up for your jerk. 5x5 will work with those as well. If your not use to them drop a set and add a couple of reps to your front squats. These are very hard at first.
    For your jerk... Do a lot of controlled front press exercises with the bar. I would say 4x6 controlled (with heavy weight) and then do 2 more using your legs to press it up. Keep in mind you have to cheat a little on your form, but in the meet this his how you will be doing them

    Keep in mind, usually every lifter in these meets knows how to bench press but not all of them know how to clean and jerk. You will be suprised to see how many people dont know what they are doing when it comes to clean and jerk.
    Make sure you get you clean and jerk down pat. This will be your bread and butter because alot of people wont be able to compete with you if you do.
    Practice them on you back days after you dead lifts at least the clean part.
    No offense but this is NOT good advice for improving the clean or jerk. High rep cleaning (sets of more than 3) is not effective for developing proper technique or power, upright rows are completely irrelevant for cleans since you're never pulling actively with your arms during a clean, and slow, controlled shoulder presses will have zero effect on your jerk.

    Front squats, on the other hand, will be effective at developing the proper positions for cleaning.

    Like I said, come down to the Olympic lifting section and we'll help set you straight

    PS Again, no offense intended, but no strength coach who knew anything about the Olympic lifts would have you following any of that advice.
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  18. #18
    Registered User Big Ed 13's Avatar
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    Thank a lot for your guys help so basically I have thinking that I am going to keep up my bench routine which is basically 4x8 at the moment and then move to 5x5 on Bill Stars Routine once Lacrosse is over with Powercleans thrown into the mix in sets of around 3-4.

    My main thing is that I have never done full power cleans if anything I do hang cleans before military presses and I have hit 155 with that? (full cleans tommorow)

    Also what would be considered a more powerlifting type of bench as of now my pinkys are at the rings.
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