T Nation

clean technique


hey all, so my friend was teaching me the clean last friday and i guess for a first-timer, i wasn't doing too bad. the only problem is i'm having trouble leading in the "snap" part of the movement where you transition from having the weight hanging off your arms to where you're under it in the front squat stance. the real issue is 1. i'm not fast enough; and 2. i believe it's because i don't know the correct technique to basically get the momentum going on the bar to get it up high enough.

so, i was wondering if anyone could give me some tips, or if there are any websites that describe how to do it in relative detail.

i gotta say, i'm falling in love with this movement. makes me sweat up a storm!


Use the search feature on this site and look up the proper form & technique; you will need it to get up to the heavy poundages...

Keys are hip speed, leg drive, lower back strength, and forearm flexibility...


dont forget to keep the bar in close proximity to your body for maximal power


this shows a good breakdown of various lifts.cheers mark


If you can't get the weight high enough then its too heavy. Start out with lighter loads until you really get the technique feeling right. As you say you don't feel as if everything is going smooth so work technique and not load.


Oh and try clean from the hang and blocks position as this works more on the second explosive pull which is where most people have the most problems.


remember to keep your back arched and not rounded. and drive with the hips. cleans really get you breathing hard and gets you that adrenalin rush feeling.

but make sure your back is arched. its a good movement, but theres someone at my gym teaching his friend to do cleans, and both he does it wrong and his friend is doing it wrong. with his back totally incorrectly rounded. and im afraid he's gonna hurt himself. it was probably better for him not to teach him, than to teach him to clean.

i think it was coach joe who had some good posts on a previous thread about clean technique. and there was a checklist of what to do.


Make sure to drive through with the hips forcefully to make the transition. CT likes to call this the "midnight move." Think dirty and you will get the idea. Stomp through with your feet into the ground forcefuly for added explosiveness.

Mike Mahler