We are proud to Host the Hudson Valley Open again. It will be on Saturday, 6/13/20. Come on down and join in the fun!
The Hudson Valley Open
Register through Eventbrite here
Go to our Event page for more info.
Lift with intent!
You may have heard this before. Approach your current lift with a commitment and an express decision to successfully complete the lift. This little nugget of wise advice goes far beyond your current rep. As an athlete, that intent needs to go beyond that immediate rep for long term success. You need that same level of commitment for the training session, training block, and so on. But it goes further than that. Are you intentionally preparing yourself for success as an athlete when you’re not in the gym? Are you prioritizing getting enough sleep, proper nutrition, doing what’s necessary for optimal recovery? Persistence is the necessary ingredient here. This is how we build great habits that pave the way to success.
COACH WITH INTENT!
Coaches program using immediate, short term & long term goals. I’ve found that coaching to the individual athlete yields far better results than a “cookie cutter” approach. So, from a coach’s perspective, I do my best to focus on what the individual athlete needs to successfully reach their goals. To truly optimize my approach and do the best I can for my athletes, it’s important to also continually educate myself to be a better coach. You can say that I coach with intent. I need to focus on what my athletes need right now with an eye on what seeds I need to plant for future growth.
LIVE WITH INTENT!
These same principles apply to life in general. Think about what matters and don’t let yourself be distracted by negativity. Intentionally seek out positive, supportive people and focus your efforts on what’s important. Avoid distractions that take you off track and bring the focus back on what matters to you. Educate yourself – never stop learning. Always seek to improve. Re-evaluate where you’re at periodically & redirect yourself as necessary.
Weightlifting is a process. Life is a journey. Live it with purpose. Live it with intent.
Come down to Technique Sunday/Try Weightlifting
115 Old Route 9
Fishkill, NY 12524
Come on down and hone your technique on the classic lifts or give weightlifting a try. Novices are welcome!
This will be a short clinic (1 ½ hours)
We’ll be going over some Theory,
Accessory work, Practical application, and Stretching.
FREE for Locomotive/Cuppa Joe Members!
Only $20 for non members!
Come on down and join us. Up your game!
On January 18, 2020, we will be hosting the Hudson Valley Winter Classic at Locomotive Crossfit.
It turns out that this will be your last chance to qualify for the American Open 1 at the Arnold’s in Ohio, March 5-8, 2020.
Many lifts are lost before they’ve barely begun. A successful lift starts at the beginning. You can’t have a solid finish with a bad start. Lifts are taught from the hang because as the lifter starts with the bar lower and eventually from the floor, the rate of difficulty increases. Each phase of the lift needs proper technique to maximize efficiency, getting the most out of your strength. Right now, we’ll focus on starting from the bottom position.
The start position is very important. A lifter should first learn a static start, meaning, get into a ready position, locked in, with no movement of the bar or body before beginning the lift. A dynamic start is when a lifter is moving just before starting the lift. For example, when a lifter ratchets their hips up and then down into their ready position just before lift off. A static start should be learned before getting into a dynamic start because you want to be consistent in your start position. If your body isn’t accustomed to starting from the same place and you jump right into a dynamic start, you’re more likely to be starting from different points and being inconsistent with your technique.
There are many different cues a coach will use to reinforce good positions and where the focus on the lift should be. Depending on what the issues are with a given lifter, the cues are meant to direct the lifter’s attention to something specific that will help the lifter complete a successful lift. Here are some cues for the start:
Use specific exercises to build strength from the floor. Don’t neglect core work – that may be the weak link that doesn’t allow you to keep your form as you transition into the second pull. There are many options, including unilateral work, to address any weaknesses or imbalances. Here’s a few:
This is only a quick list of good exercises that should be in your repertoire. Complexes are also good to work the transitions from the start, to the second pull, into the completion of the lift. The start of the jerk is also very important. In the same way, it requires flat feet and a tight core to properly drive the bar up, not forward. The lifts start and end with the feet. Like roots to a tree, they need to be planted and balanced.
When weightlifting, the focus should always be on technique. It’s a constant challenge to maintain that technique. So, of course, you have to make a conscious effort to be consistent in your approach. The only thing that should change as the weight on the bar goes up is your effort.
Use exercises and your coaches eye to fine tune technique. The exercise below is one approach.
In this video, I’m starting with a below the knee snatch pull followed by a below the knee hang snatch. The knee is an important transitional point, so this is a good place to work with. The first lift focuses on you pulling and keeping the bar close. The hang snatch follows the same groove to reinforce an efficient movement. The green line in front of the toes is your boundary. You should be keeping the bar behind that line to maintain better leverage and efficiency of movement. This is where using video is a great way to check the bar trajectory.
The exercise helps to reinforce the correct groove without having the lifter overthink the movement. Ideally, the lifter should feel the movement and know when it’s right. Focus on technique. It’s an integral part of your making that big PR down the road.
Video analysis is one way to review your lifts to make sure you are pulling efficiently. Another way that provides immediate feedback is True Pulls.
Tommy Kono was one of the greatest weightlifters of all time. Aside from his tremendous success on the platform, he was a champion bodybuilder and authored two excellent books. I learned the concept of the true pull from him (this is what I call it).
Essentially, the point of using this training technique is to make sure you are pulling, whether it be a clean or a snatch, to the proper height to get under the heaviest weights, most efficiently. It is common for lifters to “cut” the pull and rush to get under the bar. This can work when the weight is manageable, but once the weight becomes more challenging, it is less likely you will make a successful lift. There are many cues, such as, “be patient, stand tall” or “finish the pull” that are used to help lifters focus on pulling the bar as high as possible before getting under it. The True Pull is a way to train your groove so that you instinctually pull correctly every time.
This weekend I tested out to become a USAW National Referee. Why, you ask? Well, in case it didn’t occur to you, without officials, there is no sanctioned competition. I’ve enjoyed competing for many years and it’s important to recognize the efforts of the people who make it happen.
Over the years, I’ve gotten to know many officials and witnessed them working hard to make sure competitions are run right. A few years ago, I noticed the strain this put on a relatively small group of people. It sounds cool to be a National or International referee, but it does take a good deal of work to officiate at a competition – especially national competitions. What makes it harder is the small pool of qualified officials to draw from. This is what motivated me to step up and get my LWC Referee certification and now the National Referee certification. Eventually, I hope to get to IWF Category 1 Referee, the highest level – able to officiate at the Olympics.
There are additional benefits to becoming certified. For instance, having a better understanding of the rules of competition and the ins and outs of how a competition is run is a great benefit as a coach or a lifter. I’ve seen plenty of coaches’ and lifters’ mistakes hurt the athlete’s performance due to a misunderstanding of the rules and procedures followed in competition. Becoming a referee also enhances a coach’s eye – or a lifter’s eye. That is a huge benefit to aid in perfecting and maintaining proper technique.
Lastly, it’s important to give back. This is a great sport and, overall, a very supportive community. I encourage you – yes, you – to step up and join the ranks of technical officials – an integral piece that keeps the sport going.
It goes without saying that warming up is important (I said it anyway). I like to start with simple shoulder rotations, forward and backward and then proceed to stick work and some freehand squats, knee kicks, and whatever I may need to loosen any particular tight areas.
Next comes the bar work. I recommend stringing together movements for a nice superset that gets the blood pumping and heart beating. Back in the day, We used this type of warm up at weightlifting camp in Gettysburg. Before every workout, someone would lead us by calling out exercises for a set of ten with the bar. It was a great warm up that I use to this day.
Here’s an example:
Add this to your toolbox.