We made it to the last of our three part series on advanced kettlebell lifting. Today, it’s all about the Clean and Jerk!
Now, I have a confession to make. I used to HATE this lift and would complain to my friends about just how terrible this lift felt on my back. After working with a number of my kettlebell instructor friends, I finally saw the benefit in the clean and jerk.
And no, it actually doesn’t feel bad on your back once you get the maneuvering right.
That being said, this is a very technical lift. The clean and jerk, like our push pressing friend, requires a dip in the lift. However, this particular dip will involve bracing yourself for the impact of two kettlebells being placed overhead. You actually have to brace your abdominal muscles and “jerk” your arm quickly above your head in order to get the kettlebells in the lock out position. You then rise up from the dipped position to elevate yourself and then have an additional dip when you re-rack the kettlebells.
Sounds like double dipping, doesn’t it ? 😉
1. The Double Dip. I call this the double dip with the clean and jerk as you have to first dip below the kettlebells when they are overhead. You essentially are getting out of the way of the ketteleblls and then bracing your core structure for impact. After the first dip, you will stand up straight with the kettlebell in the overhead lock out position. The last dip will occur when the kettlebells are re-racked.
I know. . .this sounds complicated. So to spare you all some frustration, here’s the video of the double kettlebell clean and jerk that demonstrates these dips effectively.
Again, you should notice the few dips in this lift that separate it form the push press and the military press. The clean and jerk is arguably the best lift to forge incredible cardiovascular endurance. In fact I’d argue it may out do snatches in terms of the demands it places on the cardiovascular system. Another cool thing is that this results in serious strength gains. My current personal record on the clean and jerk is 1 set of 5 double 20kgs. Not bad for a 5’3” female :-D. So if you want incredible endurance and incredible power, the clean and jerk is your new best friend! 😀
Thanks for following the series on advanced kettlebell lifting. I hope you all learned a ton about the press, push press, and clean and jerk. I will be holding a Power Kettlebell training group that will cover these advanced lifts at Primal Fitness Pittsburgh. For more information on that training program and to find out how you can get involved feel free to contact me via phone or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a great weekend everyone! Until next time. . .
Master your instincts!