The following post comes from Eric Cressey. Eric is world renowned as the “shoulder guy”, and in this post he gives you an assessment tool to see if you are ready to train overhead. Never have I seen such a simple assessment and simple corrections if you are found to be lacking. If you want to press, snatch, or jerk you must keep reading.
It goes without saying that the Olympic lifts are total game changers when it comes to athleticism. You won’t find a collection of exercises that improves power and athleticism in the sagittal plane nearly as well as the O-lifts do.
With that said, they are also some of the most technically advanced exercises you’ll ever perform in a strength training program. Unfortunately, not all bodies are prepared for what they may encounter with the Olympic lifts, so it’s important that we learn to pre-screen athletes to make sure that they’re physically able to get the positions the O-lifts require without compensation. This pre-screening is particularly important with respect to the snatch, jerk, and overhead press, as this video demonstrates:
Now, if you fail the back-to-wall shoulder flexion test miserably, don’t worry! Below, you’ll find five videos of exercises you’ll want to incorporate in your warm-ups daily to gradually build up your range-of-motion and overhead stability. Be sure to perform them in this order:
1. Supine Alternating Shoulder Flexion on Doubled Tennis Ball
Note: be sure to do all the rest of your foam rolling series, too.
2. Bench T-Spine Mobilizations
3. Dead Bugs
4. Back to Wall Shoulder Flexion
5. Wall Slides with Overhead Shrug
Give these five exercises some attention in each of your warm-ups for the next four weeks, and I guarantee that you’ll be singing a different tune when it comes to overhead movements. And, you’ll be on your way to pain-free, clean technique with the snatch, jerk, and overhead press.
Looking for more great self-assessment and mobility tips like these – as part of a comprehensive strength and conditioning program? Be sure to check out The High Performance Handbook, Eric’s new resource. It’s on sale at a great introductory price this week only.
Click here to check out the:
[Photo Cred at top: Hookgrip]