Knees locked on the OHP Knees locked on the OHP

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Thread: Knees locked on the OHP

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2020

    Default Knees locked on the OHP

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    • starting strength seminar february 2021
    i see conflicting advice re: knees on thee OHP, almost as if “lock knees” and “don’t bend knees” are interchangeable which they aren’t quite. If I fully lock my knees, I find it hard to prevent a bit of lumbar extension, seemingly from not being able to tighten glutes as well as if I don’t fully lock knees. In the latter case I can easily hip drive without bending at the knees at all, so I don't think I'm cheating, and it feels pretty stable, controlled "bounce" and all.
    1) will heavier weights later make it harder to continue not bending knees while not fully locked? I'm currently working at very light weight, <65lb
    2) is my glute strength the bottleneck to allowing full knee lock to coexist with proper hip drive?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2020


    Starting Strength: BBT, 3d ed. (p. 86-87):

    First, "squeeze your quads tight to lock the knees hard in extension, and then squeeze your abs tight to set your lumbar spine from the front. This squeezing from the ribcage down to knees creates a band of tension that we will use to create a rebound. Once this tension is build, push your hips forward so that your weight goes onto your toes. This movement must not be produced by bending the knees . . ."

    This recent video from Coach Socolinsky and Coach Socolinsky recommends a bit wider stance with toes out, in order to guard against bending the knees:

    Common Press Mistakes and How to Fix Them | Diego and Emily Socolinsky

    With heavier weights, any distinction between locking your knees and not bending them probably becomes less noticeable, as you work harder and harder to stay tight under the bar.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    New York, NY


    As J. noted, yes. I just want to emphasize that you should not be squeezing your glutes in the setup for the Press. It will prevent you from throwing your hips forward. Tightness comes from the abs and quads.
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