-- Part 8 of 10 --
The Barbell Clean & Press
-- A Forgotten Exercise --
* Certified Strength Coach
* Competitive Bodybuilder & Powerlifter
Many decades ago before the bench press became popular, the Olympic clean & press overhead (often just referred to as the “Press”) was the standard exercise for the strength world.
The bench press wasn’t practiced until the 1950’s and didn’t become really popular until the 1970’s. Today they ask you, “How much can you bench?”. Years ago the question was, “How much can you press?”.
The Olympic clean & press overhead was
recognized as one of three standard international lifts
(the other two are the snatch and the clean & jerk) that
was performed in competitions. For quite a few years this
lift was performed in a meritorious style (erect stance,
nearer shoulder width grip, and elbows consciously held in.
You can refer to the diagram and description below for a full explanation of how to properly perform the “Barbell Clean & Press”.
Barbell Clean & Press
Stand over the barbell as if you were going to do a deadlift. Squat down and grasp the bar with a shoulder width grip. Using your legs, explode the bar off the floor. When the barbell passes your knees, push in with your hips. Start to pull the barbell up with your back. This action will bring the bar into contact with your legs at mid-thigh. At the moment of contact, accelerate the bar upward with your legs and back until your body reaches a full extension. At full extension rise up on your toes and shrug your shoulders. This movement puts maximum momentum into the barbell, allowing it to continue to rise while you drop under it. Bend your elbows, pulling the bar up with your arms as you jump your feet out to the sides. Descend into a half squat as quickly as possible. With the bar moving up and your body moving down, twirl your elbows under it. The barbell should come to rest on your anterior deltoids and clavicle bones on or before your thighs become parallel to the floor.
Keeping your back muscles tight, stand upright with the bar. Then contract your shoulder muscles and explode the barbell to a locked-out position overhead. Keep your back upright and try not to bend more then 45 degrees away from midline as you press the bar. Hold the bar overhead momentarily and then slowly bring it back down.
Then an odd development begin to manifest itself
through a liberalization of the rules, due in part to the
influence of the Russian and Asiatic lifters. It got to a
point where many of the officials were not able to keep to
a strict interpretation of the rules governing this lift
and gradually the rules became so lenient that the press
was often called the "odd ball" lift.
It was a joke to see a lifter pressing nearly as much or
more as he could jerk overhead, an example being in a 1972
competition where the great Soviet Olympic lifter Vasiily
Alexeev "pressed" 518 pounds but only clean & jerked
507 pounds. Judging the Olympic clean & press overhead
continued to become such a monumental problem (obvious
slumped upper body/hyper-extended back, knee-kicks, and
sudden jolts in the starting drive of the press) that it
was finally abolished as one of the official international
lifts in the early 1970s.
During its hey day as one of three standard tests of
combined strength and athletic ability in weight lifting
the Olympic clean & press was the most basic of all
exercises, especially for the development of the
shoulders. Sadly though because of its abolishment
the Olympic clean & press (along with the Continental
and Military press) quickly faded in popularity and
became an almost forgotten exercise for Olympic
style-lifters, power-bodybuilders, powerlifters and
strength athletes alike. However as time has gone on
many of these iron game veterans have began to
S-L-O-W-L-Y return to a more isolated and traditional
form of the clean & press, from decades past, as a core
exercise of choice for the development of a strong
overhead kinetic structural support accompanied with
HUGE deltoids and traps.
Dennis Weis has written an information-packed,
result-producing eBook that reveals how to use
the barbell clean and press to build broad, massive,
and powerful shoulders! And, he'll show you how to
enhance your overhead pressing strength.
This muscle building eBook reveals many of the secrets
for obtaining MOUNTANIOUS OVERHEAD PRESSING STRENGTH.
You'll discover such detailed technical tips and
- The 10 Tracking Patterns of the Overhead Barbell Press.
- The Power Rack Attack.
- The 90 Day Graduated Incline Press System.
- The Famous Doug Hepburn One-Rep System.
The Barbell Clean & Press is just one of
21 power bodybuilding e-books that is included
with the Total Fitness Bodybuilding Muscle Building System.
Get your very own copy of this ultimate collection of
muscle building knowledge and transform your body into
an award winning muscular physique!
Doug Hepburn (who is featured in the "Barbell Clean & Press eBook") was considered the strongest man in the world at one time, and for good reason. Born in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Douglas Ivan Hepburn (1926-2000) went on to win the heavyweight class over American weightlifting icon John Davis with lifts of 371 in the press, 297 in the snatch, and 364 in the clean and jerk.
Hepburn was the first man to officially bench 400, 450, and 500 lbs.
He was also a great squatter: he held a world record of 630 lbs. squat, that Paul Anderson eventually exceeded in late 1952. Doug would later improve his personal best squat to 760 lbs.
During his prime Doug weighed 280 and was reportedly capable of the following lifts:
- Press off the rack: 440 lbs
- Two-Hand Dumbbell Press: 175s
- Press Behind The Neck: 350 lbs
- Two Hand Barbell Curl: 260 lbs
- Wide Grip Bench Press: 580 lbs
- Jerk Press: 500 lbs
- Crucifix: 200 lbs
- Squat: 760 lbs
- Deadlift without straps: 705 lbs
- Deadlift with straps: 740 lbs
If you would like to learn more about Doug Hepburn’s training and his impressive lifts, then be sure to get a copy of the Total Fitness Bodybuilding Muscle Building System and check out the "Barbell Clean & Press eBook" that is included on the Bonus CD-ROM.
Links To The Previous Parts Of The Bodybuilding Tips Training Course:
- The Best Muscle Building Exercises For Each Bodypart
- Is There A Perfect Workout Routine?
- The Correct Lifting Technique For Gaining Muscle And Strength
- I am not getting any bigger... Why...?
- The Truth About Bodybuilding Supplements
- Gaining Muscle With Squats And Milk
- Workout Motivation - Top 10 Ways to Stay Motivated