As a coach at CFV I’m constantly faced with the dilemma of watching an athlete perform a movement and not go through their full range of motion they are capable of. Whether knowingly or not, some if not all of us short change ourselves in this department. I’ve seen it in the beginner and even in people who’ve been coming here for years. Sometimes we think we’re hitting rock bottom on a squat or our head is above the bar on a pullup, but only to hear the coach say “two more inches”. Please don’t get upset by these comments… they are not meant to destroy your ego or “call you out”, unless we’ve repeatedly cued your error and you continue to do half-squats with your hands on your knees. I address this issue for several reasons.
First, ROM is a major issue for older athletes. Us old dudes just don’t have the flexibility that the young bucks naturally have. Years of overuse, injuries, and doing movements without full ROM (imagine that) for years all contribute to a deterioration in our movement quality… and it’s not going to get any better, unless we change how we do things and make a conscious effort to overdo our ROM. If you’re one of these guys (me included) learn some simple mobility exercises to target your specific problem areas… see Ana and Angie. I struggled with shoulder mobility for the first two years at CF (I couldn’t OHS an empty bar) and even had a couple of debilitating shoulder injuries in the process. Do I short-rep my OH stuff because of it??? No, I am continually conscientious about warming up my shoulders and consistently doing mobility and strengthening work. Find your weak/tight areas and fix them… NOW and every day.
Secondly, not going through your full range of motion is dangerous. Seriously Wade, dangerous??? Yes. Want to meet SEVERAL healthy teenage young men with serious vertebral fractures? I can introduce you to them. Why are these injuries occurring? IMO they’re lifting weights too heavy to be safe. This goes for seasoned athletes as well. Too often we (or our coach) let egos take the place of logic and common sense and put ourselves in a position that our bodies simple are not ready for. “More weight, more weight!” is NOT the way to reaching your potential for strength… adults with degrees SHOULD know this. ***Be wary of “coaches” who aren’t active participants in what they preach. You half-squatted 600# with a belt, power suit, and knee wraps??? I’m not impressed in the least and neither are your vertebrae. You squatted 300# raw where your butt almost kisses the deck… I’ll say you’re awesome. If a an athlete is unable to squat below parallel with the bar loaded with a particular weight, it is simply too heavy to be safe. Period. Get strong in every possible position your body will go… you’ll advance so much quicker and be able to do it for many years to come.
Lastly, short-repping during a WOD is not only ugly, dangerous, and unproductive, but everyone frowns upon it. I learned a lot of what I know about quality of movement by watching Lex (I miss him). He was always PERFECT. Never did I question a squat depth, MUp or pushpress lockout, or if his knees touched his elbows. To this day I strive to move in this way. When someone in class is doing half reps I make an attempt to make them aware of it. Hopefully after this they realize their error, make the adjustment, and keep going. Animosity among classmates occurs when an individual knowingly does half-squats or their knees never get close to their elbows… and then writes “Rx” on the board. Really??? We all understand everybody has limitations on certain movements… that’s ok… Angie has “no-repped” me on every yoga position she’s ever tried to get me to do, but I accept that I suck at it and do my best to get better. Use your limitations as motivation to grow, not as a platform to help boost your ego.
Range of motion should be as important as technique and safe mechanics. If your movement needs tweeking ask someone to watch you… or better yet video you. I never understood I wasn’t finishing my pull on my snatch until I saw it with my own eyes… video never lies. Work on your limitations… overdo your range of motion… get strong and flexible.
1) Hang Snatch (just above knee): 1×5@70%, 1×4@80%, 1×3@85%, 1x 2@90%, 1×5@80% – rest as needed
2) Hang Clean (just above knee): 1×5@70%, 1×4@80%, 1×3@85%, 1x 2@90%, 1×5@80% – rest as needed
3) Jerk from blocks (or rack):1×5@70%, 1×4@80%, 1×3@85%, 1x 2@90%, 1×5@80% – rest as needed
75 Double Unders
25 Cal Row