The 2 Fundamental Roles of Footwork in the Jerk:
1) To prevent your body from falling down.
2) To make it easier to lift heavy weights.
In this article I will explain what are the 2 fundamental roles of footwork in the jerk, how they relate to each other, and why you need to focus on one or both of them when performing the jerk.
Footwork in the Jerk:
When you perform the jerk, your feet must move forward and backward at the same time. You have to keep your knees bent and toes pointed straight ahead while keeping your back flat against the floor.
Your torso has to remain upright during all this movement, but not too much so that it becomes difficult to lift up into a standing position. If you do not keep these two things in mind, then you will fail to complete this movement correctly!
You may think that you don’t need to pay attention to footwork because you already know the basics of the lift. However, if you want to improve your performance in the jerk, then it is very important that you learn the basic movements first before attempting any additional exercises.
The first role of footwork is to prevent your body from falling down. If you do not perform this step correctly, then you will not be able to complete the jerk movement.
Most people tend to jump into the lifting movement without even thinking about it. Of course, this is okay for some people, but if you want to improve your technique and performance, then your mindset should change.
You must learn how to perform this technique correctly and slowly before moving on to anything else.
Your feet are your foundation.
If you do not keep them anchored to the ground, then how can you push yourself up into a standing position?
You may rely on momentum alone, but your chances of falling will increase dramatically.
The second role of footwork is to make it easier to lift heavy weights. It is important to note that this does not increase the weight itself; it just makes it easier for you to lift it up.
If you fail to do this correctly, then you will not be able to perform the jerk at a quicker pace.
You must learn how to shift your weight from one leg to the other without making any unnecessary movements with your knees or ankles. This is an advanced technique that most people do not consider when performing this exercise.
It is true that it can make your muscles ache, but it will also help you lift heavier weights over time.
When you go to the gym or into your garage, then it is time to start working on your jerk. But before you do that, you need to learn the proper footwork that goes along with this movement.
Never take this part of the exercise for granted. It is important that you learn how to do this correctly and prevent potential injuries while lifting.
The muscles in your legs get a lot of action when you perform the jerk. Even though the weight doesn’t feel too heavy when you are lifting it, this changes after a few sessions.
If you don’t learn how to perform the jerk correctly, then your muscles will start to feel aching and burning sensations that prevent you from moving forward with training.
The jerk is a great exercise for those who want to increase their overall strength and power in the legs. It is fast, explosive, and designed to push your muscles to the limit.
Of course, these are the same reasons why some people shy away from this exercise. It can be intimidating to learn a new exercise, especially when you are already struggling to maintain your current workout schedule.
The jerk is one of the most exciting and powerful exercises in all of bodybuilding. If you want bigger lifts and better overall strength and conditioning, then you need to try this exercise out as soon as you can.
Of course, proper footwork is a must if you want to continue training without potential injury.
The jerk and the clean are both power exercises that work on your explosiveness and ability to sustain a fast pace throughout the entire range of motion. This is exactly what makes these exercises so great for building strength and muscle.
You also need to perfect the technique before you start loading up the weight; otherwise, you will struggle to move the barbell at all.
For most powerlifters, the jerk and the clean are not that important. Many lifters just choose to do the squat as their main power exercise because it allows you to use more weight.
As you may expect, the heavier the weight, the greater the strength gains will be.
However, if you want to build up your explosive speed and ability to move heavy loads, then the jerk and the clean are exactly what you need in your weight training program. These exercises will also strengthen your core and the muscles in your upper back, shoulders, and arms.
Performing The Jerk In Order To Get Bigger Lifts:
The jerk mainly targets the muscles in your legs, core, and to a lesser degree, your arms and shoulders. When you drop down into the split and start lifting the weight overhead, then you are primarily using your quadriceps, glutes, hamstrings, calves, and lower back.
As you push up from the split position, then your quads, glutes, and calves are taking on a large amount of the workload.
The jerk and the clean are both explosive exercises that require a tremendous amount of core strength and leg power. In order to get the bar up to your shoulders or overhead, you need to push with tremendous force.
You also need to learn how to “pop” the weight up into the air in order to prevent it from crushing you. This is also a safety mechanism that prevents injury.
For beginner and intermediate lifters, the jerk can be scaled down in order to decrease the amount of weight that you are lifting. You can perform a push press, which is lowering the weight down slowly towards your shoulders before exploding up with the bar.
For the split jerk, you can remove the dip from the exercise and simply push press the bar overhead. You can also choose to do a power jerk where you place your feet wider than your shoulders and bend slightly at the knees before pushing up with the bar.
To perform this weight training exercise, you will need a barbell and enough weight to challenge yourself but not enough to leave you crippled for life. If you are new to lifting, then you will want to start with the push press or even the power jerk until you are strong enough to do a full jerk.
If you don’t have access to a barbell and plates, you can use dumbbells instead. Simply hold a dumbbell in each hand and go through the jerking motion.
Before you get started, make sure that you know how to properly perform the jerk before you start adding weight. Watch a few videos online so you have a good idea of how the exercise is performed.
Also, be sure to find something to catch the bar when you are pushing it overhead. If you are using a barbell, then place a mat under it in case the weight slips out of your hands.
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