Missing jerks forward? Yeah, me too. Be prepared, this is a detailed article, make sure you have some time to read this fully. For your benefit, I capitalized the major points.

The main things we look for in a jerk, specifically the split jerk, is balance.

The “check list” we should go through when completing or visualizing the split jerk is as follows (try to visualize this as you read it):

In the Start Position:

  • Bar is resting in the front rack position with all the fingers under the bar, ideally a full grip
  • Elbows held at shoulder height or a little below
  • A BIG BREATH IS TAKEN before the dip portion of the lift
  • Balance is toward the lifter’s heels (key word BALANCE)

During the Dip

  • Knees move forward over the toes, hips move straight down under the bar to the power position
  • Breath is held keeping TORSO UPRIGHT, if we lean forward, the whole drive will be forward
  • Dipping only about 10% of total body height (roughly 5-8 inches)
  • Downward motion stops with bar in contact with the shoulders and you in the power position

During the upward Drive

  • Drive upward from power position against the bar by pushing against the floor WITH FEET FLAT ON FLOOR
  • Extend the legs violently, like a jump!
  • You begin to lockout and PUSH YOURSELF UNDER THE BAR

In the Jerk Split & Receiving Position

  • Arms locked out
  • HIPS DIRECTLY UNDER THE BAR while the torso remains vertical
  • SHIN OF THE FRONT LEG IS VERTICAL and the foot is flat
  • Back foot contacts the platform with the toes and ball of the foot

Jerk Recovery – Returning to the start position with the bar overhead

  • Barbell, shoulders, and hips are stacked on top of each other with elbows always locked out
  • FRONT FOOT is brought back to the middle of the body
  • BACK FOOT is brought forward one step to meet the front foot
  • Elbows remain rigidly locked throughout this recovery process

That process is broken down to an incredible amount of detail. It should be, the olympic lifts are complex movements with the biggest aspect considered is safety and technique. Doing the technique correctly will ensure safety.

If you didn’t understand any of this, see Coach Mike or Coach Joe from Victory Kid Barbell Club in person for a skill session to dive deeper into the technique! As always, give us a review and a like on Facebook and contact us to start with Victory Kid Barbell.

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