Exercises to Help You Perform a Proper Clean
Just like any of the Olympic lifts, assistance exercises go a long way in improving the clean. For instance, they help in technique improvements, power increase, timing improvements, strength increases, and even mobility improvement. Below are some of the top assistance exercises worth performing to enhance your clean.
This is a helpful workout for almost every weightlifter. For this reason, it is found in a majority of training programs. One of the problems considered common when performing the clean is the incidence of the bar crushing down on you in the third pull or turnover. The same mistake appears in the snatch, but it is not as noticeable because the snatch’s grip remains relatively constant than in the clean.
Athletes who suffer a clean bar crush find difficulties in recovering and the wear and tear on the ankles, keens, and back are totally unnecessary. With power clean, you are trained on the ability to better elevate the barbell, change directions at the top of your pull, and to pull under so as to complete the turnover relatively fast. Because of these reasons, power clean is an extremely helpful CrossFit exercise.
Halting Clean Deadlift
For optimal performance throughout the clean, proper positioning is critical. However, knowing these proper positions, achieving them when it matters, and being capable of reaching them are issues that are distinct and independent.
What we want as lifters is for our shoulders to remain in the front of the bar up to such a time when the bar reaches mid to upper thigh. This places you in an optimal position to initiate the upward explosion and attain maximal acceleration and elevation. It also helps you to maintain maximal proximity of your body to the bar as well as change directions at maximal speed.
To reach this position, you ought to possess adequate strength which must be trained. This is where the halting clean deadlift comes into the picture. It helps you train this position effectively and directly.
This is arguably one of the basic, but extremely helpful exercises. It is used in different ways to bring out specific effects. When used as a standalone, clean pull trains general improvement in position, speed, strength, as well as timing of both the first and second pulls of the clean.
The variations to incorporate into clean pull depend on your needs as a lifter at that given time. For instance, if you want to improve postural strength, you can perform the clean pull at a slow speed from the floor to mid-thigh then accelerate maximally as normal.
Press in Clean
This is also known as Sots press after its founder Viktor Sots. It is an exceptional exercise for any weightlifter capable of performing it. However, to perform it correctly, you require a commendable level of starting mobility. This serves to improve your hip, ankle, and thoracic spine mobility with time. It is a great exercise to use at the onset of a CrossFit workout so as to mobilize your upper back, hips, and ankles as well as activate your upper back extensors.
While the above exercises are recommended for the clean, what works for you largely depends on your particular circumstances. However, the above list is a great one to start you off.