The Push Press (and push jerk variation)
Nothing beats that feeling you get when you able to perform over head activities quickly and with ease. Functional upper torso power is essential to most contact and power based sports. Whether its wrestling, rugby, swimming or mixed martial arts, upper limb and lower power is constantly called into play therefore training co-ordination and power in these regions is of utmost importance. Another great power exercise is the Push Press. This exercise consists of quickly and forcefully pushing the bar from the shoulders to over the head. Although the accent consi9sts of two phases, the upward movement of the bar occurs in one continuous motion without interruption. Both the push press and push jerk exercises involve a rapid hip and knee extension that accelerate the bar off the shoulders followed immediately by movements that position the bar over head. The technique used to attain the final bar position varies, however in the push press, the knee extension trust is only forceful enough to drive the bar to 1/3 the distance overhead. From this height the bar is then “pressed out” to the overhead position with the hips and knees fully extended after the trust.
NB:Pleased be advised that all exercisers must be done using light weights or the barbell. Emphasis must be on proper form and not on pushing heavy weights as this can lead to serious injury
Push press (and push jerk variation)
· Grasp the bar with a closed, pronated grip.
· Grip should be slightly wider than shoulder – width.
· Step under the bar and position the feet hip-width apart and parallel to each other.
· Move up to the bar to place it on top of the anterior deltoid and clavicle.
· Extend the hips and knees to lift the bar off the support.
· Stand in the middle of the lifting platform.
· Position the feet shoulder-width apart or wider with toes pointing out.
· All repetitions begin from this point.
Preparation phase: dip
· Flex the hips and knees at a slow to moderate speed to move the bar in a straight path downward.
· Continue the dip to a depth not to exceed a quarter squat, the catch position of the power clean or ten percent of the athlete’s height.
· Keep the feet flat on the floor, torso erect and upper arms parallel to the floor.
The upper movement phase: drive
· Immediately upon reaching the lowest position of the dip, reverse the movement by forcefully and quickly extending the hips and knees and the elbows to move the bar overhead.
Catch (for push press)
· After the knees and hips are fully extended and the bar is overhead from the drive phase, press it up the rest of the way until the elbows are fully extended.
· In this position the torso is erect, the head is in a neutral position, the feet are flat on the floor and the bar is slightly behind the head.
Catch (for the push jerk)
· After the knees and hips are fully extended and the bar is overhead from the drive phase, quickly re-flex the hips and knees to a quarter squat position and simultaneously extend the elbows fully to catch the bar overhead at the same moment that the bar reached its highest position.
· Catch the bar with the torso erect, the head in a neutral position, the feet flat on the floor and the bar slightly behind the head.
The downward movement phase:
· Lower the elbows to unrack the bar from the anterior deltoids and clavicle, and then slowly lower the bar down to the thighs.
· Simultaneously flex the hips and knees to cushion the impact of the bar on the shoulders.
· At the end of the set, step toward the rack and place the bar in the supports.
I hope I have highlighted the key factors in performing the Push Press and Jerk with proper technique and form. If you have any questions or comments feel free to post or contact me privatley.
till then remember 'if it aint fast it aint twitchin'
Jo 'never say no' Ramahdin
Baechle, T. R. and Earle, R. W.(2008). Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning, Human Kinetics.