If you thought that the two (not one, but TWO) met-cons on Tuesday looked familiar, you wouldn’t be wrong. That’s because both have been class features on two recent but separate occasions (one less than a month ago on January 3rd, and the other not long before that on December 27th). Each are short but brutish met-cons in their own right, but when paired up, it definitely became an exercise in pushing through the suck (despite the soothing 10min rest in between).
In 6 minutes, perform as many rounds as possible of 6 hang squat cleans and 12 hand release push-ups. Weight for the hang squat cleans was RX’d at 95lbs for guys and 65lbs for ladies, but everyone was given the option to scale to a weight appropriate for their needs. Additionally, those still working on cleans (or just plain uncomfortable with the HS Clean) could perform a hang power clean and then front squat the weight. Score was total rounds and reps.
In 6 minutes, perform as many ascending sets of the cluster/burpee ladder as possible, adding an additional rep of each exercise with each additional round. Thus, the first set was 1 cluster and 1 burpee, the second set was 2 of each, the third three of each, and so on. The Cluster is a Clean and Thruster combo, and athlete’s had the option to either squat clean the weight right into a thruster, or perform a power clean and then thruster the weight. Regardless, each clean had to start from the floor.
The combination of these two workouts really serves to hammer home the importance of a stable front rack position, and by stable, we mean with the bar resting on the tops of the shoulders with the elbows up and triceps parallel to the floor (as opposed to the a position where the weight of the bar is born in the hands rather than on the shoulders, and the elbows are pulled down and pointing at the floor).
A good rack position can be the source of a lot of pain and frustration for many athletes. As discovered Tuesday, the inability to get into a good rack position affects a whole host of exercises, including front squats, cleans, and thrusters, as well as the pressing triumverate of strict press/push press/jerks. Oddly enough, it’s relatively easy to combat this frustration (and by easy, I mean of course that the solution is accessible to all). It just takes a lit bit of time, along with a big dose of desire to fix the primary issue: limited mobility & flexibility.
If you’re one of the people struggling to obtain and/or maintain a good rack position (and don’t worry, there’s a lot of you), ask yourself: what am I doing to work on this? If the answer is “nothing, really,” then why not? If it’s simply a lack of resources, look no further than the perma-link on the left hand side of our blog entitled Mobility WOD. This link to KStarr’s website has been there for over 6 months now. Click the link, and throw “front rack” into the MWOD search box, and you’ll discover at least 9 different videos concerning various fixes for problem points of the front rack, including this great discussion about honestly assessing what it is that’s affecting your front rack/front squat position and then figuring out how to fix it: