Power Cleans - Can't Rack the Bar Power Cleans - Can't Rack the Bar

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Thread: Power Cleans - Can't Rack the Bar

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
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    Manhattan
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    Default Power Cleans - Can't Rack the Bar

    • wichita falls texas december seminar 2020
    Hello everyone,

    As a preface, I was one of the many people that did Starting Strength and the Texas method (currently) without power cleans mainly due to lack of mobility (or perceived lack of mobility). I tried them when I first did Starting Strength, but the limiting factor was I couldn't rack more than 135 without murdering my wrists and racking anything less than that was basically me holding half the weight in my hands and the other half right at my neck. I had to leave them behind when my deadlifts were going too high and cleaning sub-135 wasn't contributing anything and only practicing bad form; I did BB Rows instead. During quarantine, I want to finally tackle the rack position in my home gym, but ran into the same issues even after reading forums, websites, and reading Catalyst Athletics book, Olympic Weightlifting for Athletes and Coaches. Testing myself, it appears I have poor external shoulder rotation on my left shoulder only. I addressed a lot of the potential concerns (bad T-spine mobility, wrist flexibility, etc.) and the only things I think it could be at this point are maybe tight Lats or maybe something that's just specific to me.

    I have never broken a bone or had a muscle tear before even with contact sports as a kid with the exception of when I was born. My left collarbone broke at birth because I was a big kid and I'm not sure if this could be the reason it's painful for me to have someone force my left shoulder into external rotation. Even today, that bump on the top of my shoulder sticks up a bit more than it does on my right side. If I stick out my humorous straight ahead of my body, my forearm can only raise to about 60 degrees from parallel with the floor for my left arm. My right arm can do the same thing at 90 degrees from the floor without an issue.

    Anyone with more knowledge or the same experience know if history of a broken collar bone can hurt your shoulder's flexibility?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Long Island, NY
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    I think it is unlikely that external rotation of a single shoulder is the culprit of a poor clean rack position. If you are right-handed and spent a chunk time throwing things as a child it is normal to have an asymmetry external and internal rotation between both sides. Post a video of you doing a power clean at a moderate weight (right around the 135 area). Get a front oblique angle. I broke my collar bone as a child and it has not hindered my ability to perform the movements in any way. This does not mean that yours has not.

  3. #3
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    Apr 2020
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    Manhattan
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    I never threw much as a kid (I was bigger so I did things like O-line in football), but I'm wondering if that's just what the case is with dominant vs non-dominant hands. As for a video I'll see what I can do soon. I'm out of town at the moment, but I'll be home this weekend.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Sounds good

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Location
    Manhattan
    Posts
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    Default

    As an update, I was talking to one of my friends about this issue and she did a few tests on me. I found out my T-spine and lats are not very mobile, more like a brick. She's a yoga instructor so I trust her opinion. I had done some of the tests wrong (more like cheated without knowing it). Anyway, I'm going to work on adding some stretches specific to these and see if I can get any progress. This would also explain why my OHP sucks because my left arm is always the one that fails if I fail a rep.

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