T Nation

Best Power Substitutes....

I have to leave town this summer to work and save money for school. Problem is that I’m also training for football and Olympic lifts have become a staple of my program. What I’m looking for are your favorite power movements that you can perform without a platform or olympic weights. So far I’ve got dumbell snatches and jump squats but any help you can provide would be much appreciated.

Dumbbell cleans, dumbbell push jerks or presses, cleans and snatches from hang, jumping splits squats.

Don’t give up on the big basics, squat, bench and deadlift. In my opinion the olympic lifts are focused too heavily on, and at the expense of the strength lifts. I am not saying give up on the olympic lifts totally, but make sure you are doing your strength work as well. As far as stuff to do without a platform and barbell, just mimic the lifts with DB’s. Kettlebell work is great for ballistic lifting as well. Kettlebell clean and jerks and snatches are two awesome exercises.


I think you are right. I went totally olympic lifts at one point and my progess (even in the OL) stalled.

I love doing the OL but I need to do an equal amount of strength lifts as well to improve.

About having little equipment and exercising the legs, you could try short sprints or vertical jumps.

Oly lifters themselves don’t just train the oly lifts! They do big full range squats and heavy shrugs and deads too.

Yeah I know I was just being too clever trying to do only OL.

I have found the front squat the most useful in increasing my OL.

Personally I have not found the deadlift that much of a help. But it is good to train for its own sake.

Creed is right - dumbbell cleans and presses/push-jerks are terrific. I’d say that for a non-oly lifter they are even more valuable than the barbell version (they are A LOT easier on the wrists…)

Check out Brooks Kubik’s site, he does a lot of heavy dumbbell lifts (in addition to lots of terrific strongman stuff…)

Best of luck

Don’t use the oly lifts. Why not just use speed movements and ballistic movements? The oly lifts are not irreplaceable.

All of the previous responses have good ideas. I’ll ad weighted chinups and pullups, done through a full range of motion, for lat & bicep work. Also, if you are working near a town of any size, there is SOMEbody–SOMEwhere–lifting in a garage, basement, barn or cave, and he probably has a barbell. My experience has been that most people in that situation welcome a training partner. Ask the HMFWIC’s of the Canadian powerlifting and olympic lifting associations if they have any members near where you’re going. Ask the most muscular SOB in town. Unless you’re going to a desert island, there’s probably some iron in the area.
Strength & courage,
Coach Joe