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  1. #1
    Registered User Ventura41's Avatar
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    Not flexible enough for the rack position in the power clean

    title...

    Ive tried a wider grip and couldnt even put one finger in the bar. Right now its anatomically impossible for me with the elbows pointing forward.

    In SS Rip advices to let go of the bar, in cases like this. but Im probably missing something because I ended up hurting my clavicle bones, while trying to put the bar on my deltoids.

    Im doing some tricep stretching exercises but it doesnt look good. any advice?
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  2. #2
    Under Construction unity's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Ventura41 View Post
    title...

    Ive tried a wider grip and couldnt even put one finger in the bar. Right now its anatomically impossible for me with the elbows pointing forward.

    In SS Rip advices to let go of the bar, in cases like this. but Im probably missing something because I ended up hurting my clavicle bones, while trying to put the bar on my deltoids.

    Im doing some tricep stretching exercises but it doesnt look good. any advice?
    maybe stretch your forearms as well? are you able to font squat with a clean grip?
    i'm hungry
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  3. #3
    Wat J.L.C.'s Avatar
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    If you can scratch the back of your head you have the flexibility to power clean.

    You have to learn to not pull the bar up with the arms and don't try to hold the bar with your hands/wrists when it's racked.
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  4. #4
    Registered User Reef58's Avatar
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    Search California Strength videos. They have one for stretching for powercleans

    Richard
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  5. #5
    Registered User Ventura41's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Reef58 View Post
    Search California Strength videos. They have one for stretching for powercleans

    Richard
    I already saw the upper body flexibility video and can't even do the basics. The problem is with my forearms since they're really long. I just want to be able to rack the bar with one finger but even that seems impossible

    Originally Posted by J.L.C. View Post
    If you can scratch the back of your head you have the flexibility to power clean.

    You have to learn to not pull the bar up with the arms and don't try to hold the bar with your hands/wrists when it's racked.
    Im pulling the bar up with the momuntum of the jump as it should be. But I still have to catch it and this is my main problem. Can you explain it better?

    Originally Posted by unity View Post
    maybe stretch your forearms as well? are you able to font squat with a clean grip?

    No Im not able.
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  6. #6
    Registered User matjusm's Avatar
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    If your forearms are long, take a wider grip.

    Also remember that you don't have to hold the bar in your palms when its racked. You might only be able to have a finger or two in contact with the bar but that is perfectly fine.
    Strength + Speed = Power

    If you never fail, you aren't truly pushing yourself to the limit. If you never push yourself to the limit, how do you know what you're truly capable of?
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  7. #7
    Registered User Reef58's Avatar
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    Bravo Sierra!

    Get a broom stick grip it as wide as needed to do the shoulder dislocations. If you cant do one go as far as you can and keep working on it.

    Sit at a desk take said broom stick in raack position or as far as you can go. Elbows on desk press down.

    Jeez dude you gotta put in the effort.

    Richard

    Originally Posted by Ventura41 View Post
    I already saw the upper body flexibility video and can't even do the basics. The problem is with my forearms since they're really long. I just want to be able to rack the bar with one finger but even that seems impossible



    Im pulling the bar up with the momuntum of the jump as it should be. But I still have to catch it and this is my main problem. Can you explain it better?




    No Im not able.
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  8. #8
    Registered User Ventura41's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Reef58 View Post
    Bravo Sierra!

    Get a broom stick grip it as wide as needed to do the shoulder dislocations. If you cant do one go as far as you can and keep working on it.

    Sit at a desk take said broom stick in raack position or as far as you can go. Elbows on desk press down.

    Jeez dude you gotta put in the effort.

    Richard
    Alright good advice, thanks.

    Originally Posted by matjusm View Post
    If your forearms are long, take a wider grip.

    Also remember that you don't have to hold the bar in your palms when its racked. You might only be able to have a finger or two in contact with the bar but that is perfectly fine.

    The wider grip doesnt work too. Read my first post though, I cant just pull the bar straight to my shoulders since it always lands on my chest and it hurts like hell.
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  9. #9
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    Originally Posted by Ventura41 View Post
    The wider grip doesnt work too. Read my first post though, I cant just pull the bar straight to my shoulders since it always lands on my chest and it hurts like hell.
    That right there is the problem.

    You should not be trying to pull the bar to your shoulders.

    All the power and all the height on the bar comes from the hips - driving the hips into the bar and quickly and aggressively retracting them, which pulls the body under it.

    Power cleans are not an upper body exercise.

    More often then not, when someone can't rack the bar properly it is due to trying to pull the bar up with the arms/traps/shoulders - upper body.

    Here's my quick n' dirty on power cleans:


    Originally Posted by J.L.C. View Post
    The lift should start with the bar on the floor, positioned over top of where the toes meet the foot. Hips slightly higher than knees with a strong arch in the back, and shoulders in front of the bar.

    The lift from the floor to approximately mid-thigh is called the 1st pull. It is done entirely with the legs. Thinking about 'pushing the floor away' helps, similar to a leg press, slowly press the floor away and 'pull the knees back', the angle of the hips and lower back should not change.

    The 2nd pull starts at just above mid-thigh - this is where you explode. Triple extension - ankle, knee, hip - is the goal of this phase. Think of standing up HARD then immediately being in the receive position (1/4 front squat, elbows high).

    The 2nd pull ends when the body hits full extension - the arms should still be straight at the end of the 2nd pull. Do not pull with your arms, power cleans are not jumping-upright-row-reverse-curls!

    The force of the extension sends the bar up. As the bar rises the lifter 'whips' their elbows under the bar and 'racks' it across the shoulders. This is difficult to do if you have pulled the bar up with the arms.

    Power cleans are pulled higher than squat cleans, usually to give the legs a break - this is why lighter weights are used for power cleans.

    Here's how I do them:







    Lots of stretching of the forearm flexors, triceps, and shoulder girdle (dislocates) will help with the mobility and will make the rack position more comfortable. Practicing the lift and positions with an empty bar is a great way to develop the flexibility - keep at it
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  10. #10
    Registered User Ventura41's Avatar
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    Maybe Im not being clear enough, I understand the "pushing the floor" concept, i've watched and listened to Rippetoe's video tutorial on how to perform the move and read every description, the motion isn't the problem. Its just the landing-on-shoulders Im having trouble with. I practiced with a wood just now and the landing is always awkward. This is as far as I can stretch my arm:

    http://i55.tinypic.com/j0cks3.jpg
    Last edited by Ventura41; 03-27-2011 at 03:05 PM.
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  11. #11
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    Originally Posted by Ventura41 View Post
    Maybe Im not being clear enough, I understand the "pushing the floor" concept, i've watched and listened to Rippetoe's video tutorial on how to perform the move and read every description, the motion isn't the problem. Its just the landing-on-shoulders Im having trouble with. I practiced with a wood just now and the landing is always awkward. This is as far as I can stretch my arm:

    http://i55.tinypic.com/j0cks3.jpg
    That's more than enough flexibility

    Actually, you're more flexible than me and I can rack the bar well enough.

    Keep in mind that oly lifts are very feel based and therefore take a great deal of patience, practice, and time to master. Reading up and watching videos helps, but doesn't and can't replace time spent with a barbell drilling technique.

    Take some vids of yourself doing power cleans (even with just an empty bar) and post them here or over in the Oly forum for some help and feedback.
    Last edited by J.L.C.; 03-27-2011 at 04:50 PM.
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  12. #12
    Registered User Ventura41's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by J.L.C. View Post
    That's more than enough flexibility

    Actually, you're more flexible than me and I can rack the bar well enough.

    Keep in mind that oly lifts are very feel based and therefore take a great deal of patience, practice, and time to master. Reading up and watching videos helps, but doesn't and can't replace time spent with a barbell drilling technique.

    Take some vids of yourself doing power cleans (even with just an empty bar) and post them here or over in the Oly forum for some help and feedback.
    Alright will do. Just wondering, do you only use your deltoids to "catch" the bar? because if you arent more flexible than me its the only way lol
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  13. #13
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    There's a natural "groove" where the deltoid meets the collar bone, that's where the bar will sit.
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  14. #14
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    Just make sure you get underneath the bar low enough to catch it with your delts and not slamming it against your collarbone when racking. Try to stick your chest up to help support the bar.
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  15. #15
    Registered User Ventura41's Avatar
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    Finally nailed it! Thanks everyone again
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