Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Exercise Cues: Locking Out Overhead

Burly looking fellow. Must be a European lifter.

When it comes to Olympic weightlifting, most people talk about Glenn Pendlay or Greg Everett. I personally haven't read much from either coach. Instead I'm a big fan of Tommy Kono.

While watching one of his lectures* he briefly mentioned a tip on performing the jerk. He said to have your arms to cover your ears resulting in your elbows pointing away from them. This in turn will better help keep the weight overhead.

When using dumbbells I noticed a similar tip myself. I keep the weight racked close and in line with my ear. Otherwise if it's not close to you it becomes a struggle to hold the weight and press it up.

Next time you're doing any type of vertical press, try bringing your elbows to your ears as you press the weight overhead.

*See his lecture here.


  1. With KB jerks, the cue is to keep your bicep close to your ear.

    This ensures the right amount of internal rotation to provide stability.

    You'll see a lot of weightlifters do something similar, although it isn't as obvious as the bar is fixed.

  2. Nick, I've heard Glenn Pendlay and Boris Bachmann mention that cue as well for overhead squatting. In the original video Tommy Kono describes it as pointing your elbows away from the head. I left it out for simplicity's sake - although to be honest I didn't realize it had a mechanical advantage to it.

    The cue with the bar becomes a problem as well as the grip gets wider. It's more difficult to "bring" the elbows to the ears.


Creative Commons License
Niel Patel's Blog by Niel K. Patel is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.