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Push Press vs. Jerk

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning Discussion' started by XTrainer, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Overhead stuff has always been a weakness of mine, and I've been working really hard to correct that lately. My goal is to improve my overhead lifts enough that I'll be able to do a respectable job at Fatty's strongman this November, even though I won't be a true contender for any of the top spots in my class.

    Anyway, I tried to teach myself how to jerk. It's not going well, and it is a programming nightmare to have bench presses, jerks, and push presses all in the same week (plus their accessory lifts). Right now my jerk (split) PR is 200lbs. While I haven't tested a fresh push press max in awhile, I do 195 routinely so my PR is probably at least 200lbs. My jerks feel shaky and I know my technique is lousy. Push presses feel solid.

    I have a decision to make. Keeping in mind that my goal is max weight overhead, is it worth it for me to try to work on my jerk technique, or should I just focus on push presses? Theoretically, I should be able to jerk more weight, but with such poor technique and no coach, I'm not sure if it would be worth it to focus on training this lift. I don't know if I'll really be able to improve much. At least I'm comfortable with push presses and can probably expect some decent progress.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. nomilkforsanta

    nomilkforsanta Nathan

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    My knee-jerk reaction is this: I heard from Ian King and Charlie Francis that the jerk places to much stress on the lower back unless your training for weightlifting events the push-jerk is more (dare i say) functional.
     
  3. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Push jerks probably require just as much technique as split jerks. Technique is the limiting factor here. Also, I think push jerks require a good deal of shoulder flexibility, and I don't have flexible shoulders (yet).
     
  4. Zerocrew1984

    Zerocrew1984 Banned Banned

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    push jerk is a lot easier than the split jerk. go with that xtrainer.
     
  5. Vedic

    Vedic Purple Belt

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    I think you kind of answered your own question buddy:)
     
  6. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Let's say, hypothetically, (but hopefully not), I have similar technical problems with the push jerk...
     
  7. Donut62

    Donut62 Black Belt

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    I think you are talking about a squat jerk. A push jerk is a push press with a slight second dip and usually a press out.
     
  8. Donut62

    Donut62 Black Belt

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  9. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    No, I was thinking push jerk, but I kind of wrote those off right off the bat because everything I have read before said that they were more difficult to learn and required more shoulder flexibility. This thread is making me rethink my decision, though.
     
  10. fat_wilhelm

    fat_wilhelm Black Belt

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    Unless you happen to catch a contest where there's a former olympic lifter competing, you will rarely see a split jerk used in competition. Push jerks are quicker when it comes to press for reps events and are what's commonly used.

    The jerk does not have to be exaggerated... just a slight double dip, which does not require the extreme flexibility you're talking about. The best way to learn is to drill a weight that you're comfortable jerking w/ good technique until it is second nature. Then, move up. You may or may not be comfortable using the jerk at your first contest, but don't abandon it. Once you get it, you will absolutely be able to put bigger weight overhead.

    Get on Youtube and study technique. You'll notice how fluid the jerk is when you watch some of the better pressers. Here are Rob Orlando and Jason Kristal, two of the best examples.

    <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/1XnGaFNrmJI&hl=en"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/1XnGaFNrmJI&hl=en" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

    <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/qXdsRHiqw54&hl=en"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/qXdsRHiqw54&hl=en" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>
     
  11. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Thanks, Fatty. I'll be a few miles away from barbells this weekend, but I can't wait to give this a try Monday.
     
  12. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    Thanks, Fatty. I'll be a few miles away from barbells this weekend, but I can't wait to give this a try Monday.
     
  13. Ascendant

    Ascendant <img src="http://i543.photobucket.com/albums/gg474

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    I love how XTrainer is always looking to learn.

    Kudos to you my friend.
     
  14. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    I have a lot to learn.

    I wish there was a way for me to show my appreciation to all of you who teach me stuff.
     
  15. Donut62

    Donut62 Black Belt

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    You've got a purdy mouth...
     
  16. oxcart

    oxcart Ambαssαdor of kwan

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    Push jerk = pressed power jerk?
     
  17. XTrainer

    XTrainer Red Belt

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    I'm not THAT appreciative...:icon_chee
     
  18. fat_wilhelm

    fat_wilhelm Black Belt

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    Yes.
     
  19. JPC

    JPC Purple Belt

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    I never knew the push jerk allowed a press out, I always assumed it another term for power jerk. That's good because I can push jerk a lot more if I'm allowed a press out.

    Xtrainer, my shoulder flexibility can't be any better than yours. If I lie down on my back, keeping my lower back touching the ground, and try to raise my straight arms over my head, they won't touch the floor. They are a good 8 inches from the floor. With a loaded barbell in my hands, I can get the right lockout position for the overhead lifts though.

    Push jerks came naturally to me and I can lift about 10% more than with a push press.
    Just practice rebending the knees once the bar passes your face. If you can power clean, you can push jerk.
     
  20. fat_wilhelm

    fat_wilhelm Black Belt

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    In the context of his question, which is pertaining to strongman, specifically, you're allowed to get the weight overhead in whatever manner best suits you, as long as you don't rest it on top of your head and do it as a two part lift. Strict press, push press, power jerk, split jerk are all OK for events like barbell, axle and log. On something like a viking press, the double dip is usually not allowed.

    With regard to semantics, I think push jerk is actually a misnomer for power jerk. Technically, a true jerk of any sort would be sans press-out, but for our purposes, we reallly don't care. If there's a double dip, we usually call it a jerk, regardless of whether there's any pressing required.
     

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