I’m not a great wordsmith, but I do know how to make you stronge. This isn’t going to be a fluffed up article, it’s going to be a blunt example of how to get a bigger number this very moment.
Often, I get the honor of travelling and helping coach at weightlifting camps, seminars, and the Pendlay Certification, as well as hosting USAW certifications. I see the same mistake among all the weightlifters that I am blessed to work with, a mistake which prevents them for reaching their potential in the jerk. We’re going to fix this right now and get you a new PR.
We all know the cue “dip and drive”. But there is a missing component… it’s the shoulder punch. I hate using the term “shrug” for this, but for the sake of making it easier to understand, that’s what we are going to use. Normally you dip, you drive, and you extend your arms. The shoulders are rarely used. Think about this. You can deadlift 250 kilos and you can shrug the same 250 kilos. That’s a tremendous amount of force production. Wouldn’t it be great if you could use that force to increase the jerk? The good news is you can. But how? It’s pretty damn simple.
Once you dip and start your drive phase, when your knees and hips are extended and the bar is about to come off your shoulders you’re going to increase the force production by punching (shrugging) your shoulders as hard as you can to the ceiling. Now all that force you use when you shrug is transferred into the jerk. You just increased your 1RM without extra work.
I suggest changing the cue from dip and drive to “dip, drive, punch”. Punch your shoulders, increase the muscle activation and walk off the platform with a new PR.
Editor note: The first time I met Jeremy I was given this cue by him after missing a 300lb clean and jerk several times. Upon him explaining what he wanted me to do I made the lift, and to this day I consider it one of my best lifts, not because of the weight (a 300lb clean and jerk isn’t exactly something to brag about), but because of the way it popped off my shoulders. I think when coaches yell ‘PUSH!’, or ‘KEEP PUSHING’, they mean to actively shrug up. But for a cue that provides a more deliberate, quick action, try this. The cue ‘punch your shoulders’ resonates a lot more with me. Give it a go, and let us know.
Jeremy Augusta is the owner of Barton County Strength Club in the USFuckinA. He is a USAW L2 coach, a Pendlay Certification Instructor, and a Powerlifting coach. To learn more about the amazing things Jeremy is doing visit his websites and check out his social media accounts below.