Olympic weight lifting is part of the theoretical hierarchy of the development of an athlete and is a big part of our CrossFit method. Olympic lifting teaches individuals to apply force to muscle groups in a sequential manner (core to extremity). These lifts effectively train athletes to recruit more muscle fibers rapidly resulting in explosive movement patterns, which can be vital for most sports.
The deadlift is a foundation lift and in its advanced application it is a prerequisite for the snatch and the clean and jerk. With all these lifts it is paramount to maintain orthopaedic safety, functionality, and mechanical advantage (CrossFit.com). To ensure these three pillars of a lift are achieved, correct technique must be understood and practised. Technique is the method an individual uses to successfully complete a movement. There are effective and less effective techniques.
Here are 25 common FAULTS when performing Olympic lifting movements:
- Poor set up position. Be mindful of head, feet, and hand positioning relevant to the lift you are about to perform. Remember there are subtle differences for each lift.
- Wide foot positioning in the set up can lead to a potential loss of power able to be generated through the floor. This can also cause the knees to collapse inwards.
- Yanking the bar off the ground. Remember to always take tension on the bar before lifting.
- Allowing the hips to rise faster then shoulder in the initial pull. DON’T BE A STRIPPER
- Failing to move knees out of the way during the initial pull – can lead to an inefficient bar path.
- Failing to keep shoulders over the bar during the initial pull – can lead to compensation elsewhere during the sequence.
- Shifting weight onto the toes too early during the initial pull.
- Exploding too early – suspect KFC gains.
- Allowing the bar to drift away from the body resulting in a poor bar path.
- Banging the bar off the legs and not reaching full extension from knees and hips.
- Pausing between the initial and second pull.
- Hyper extension of the hips at the top of the second pull.
- Premature arm pull. Allow the body to stand tall before initiating the pull. Remember to fire from core to extremity.
- Overemphasise the shrug and plantar flexion at the top of the pull.
- Excess throwing of the head back during the second pull.
- Stomping feet when landing.
- Rotating the bar around the elbows.
- Inefficient follow through with the elbows into the rack position – can lead to the bar slipping down the chest during the dip drive phase for the jerk.
- Allowing trunk flexion in the rack position – stand tall.
- Excessively wide stance in the rack position – poor power position to dip and drive from.
- Excessive deep dip into the jerk – allows for loss of speed and power to drive the bar up off the shoulders.
- Insufficient split in the split jerk.
- Soft arms in the receiving position.
- Failure to reset feet in between repetitions.
- Failure to maintain a tight body position in a touch and go situation.
We are all guilty of one or many of these faults. However the “stripper pull” (butt rises before shoulders) is the most common for many individuals. The “stripper pull” is usually a result of insufficient leg strength over back strength. This can be overcome; by not missing squat day and going back to the basics. Slow the movement down and use just a stick or an empty barbell to establish a better movement pattern.
Happy lifting 🙂