Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Get out of the HOLE !

Get out of the HOLE ! Well what is this "hole"? The ‘hole’, as is known in weightlifting, power lifting, Olympic lifting and CrossFit is considered the lowest part of a squat. This is usually the receiving /catching position for the clean and the snatch. How you handle yourself in the can be the limiting or gaining factor on your lifts.
When you lift a weight that you know you can handle in the bottom position, getting back up is not the hard part. You might notice some sticky points in that lift, but overall you know you can stand the weight up because you have done it before. But what happens when you start to overreach that limit on your squat?
Your chest caves, elbows drop, legs start to shake and your knees bend in and out because you are trying so hard. You may be able to stand the weight up, but you do so slowly and without power.
Being able to explode out of the hole helps to carry you through the sticky points of any lift. You know that feeling where fight-or-flight kicks in to make the lift. If you’re moving with power out of the bottom position, then it becomes that much easier to ‘fight’ through the difficult portions of the lift to complete the rep.
To get out of the hole, one must have the mobility and flexibility to get in there. If you can’t hit full depth with just the bar or if it’s a struggle to get there, then you need to go right back to the drawing board and start working on your flexibility. That means working on opening up your hips, working on ankle mobility, wrist and shoulder mobility for the front rack and overhead squat.
Here are two of the best accessory drills that you can work on to help build that explosive power out of the hole.
Pause Squats
During a pause squat, an athlete comes to complete stop at the bottom of the movement, holds the position for however long is dictated, then explodes out of the hole. This is quite literally how you perform the movement.
You must come to a complete stop at the bottom position, below parallel. At this point you can play around with the time you hold the weight, from 1,3,5 or even 10 seconds, but it is important that you use a lighter weight than you normally would for that squat as it’s much harder to come out of the hole from a stationary position than it is from one fluid motion.If you do pause squats enough and become comfortable holding heavy weight in that position, it’s going to make it that much easier to drop down and drive up with power when we know there is no pause involved.
Dead Squats
Dead squats are a squat variation in which you only perform the concentric portion of the lift (the shortening of a muscle as it acts against resistive force which isw the upwards phase of a back squat. Dead squats build starting strength, acceleration strength, limit strength, explosive strength, relative strength and rate of force development.
Performing the dead squat:
Set the bar in a low position in the squat rack, so when you move under the bar you are already starting at below parallel—i.e., you’re already in the hole. Assume your squat stance and stand the weight up explosively.
In addition, lifting a heavy weight with the intent to move it as quickly as possible provides explosive strength benefits. Training like this will force your body and your central nervous system which is responsible for processing information received from all parts of the body, to adapt in a positive manner to the demands you place on it by moving the weight as quickly as possible.
Practice intention with EVERY rep!

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