T Nation

Powerclean/Overpress Form Question

Hi All,

Reading T-Nation has inspired me to try to overhead press my bodyweight. I’m currently about 200 lbs. bodyweight, and I hit 175 lbs. for a double today without too much trouble. I think I’m well on my way to achieving that goal.

To set up my overhead press, I like to powerclean the barbell, but I never achieve the rack/shelf position because my elbows are pointed downwards. This feels natural to me since I figure my elbows would be pointing towards the ground if I were military pressing in a seated rack. When reading powerclean literature though, the proper rack/shelf position is described as elbows forward. Does a good rack posiiton matter for overhead pressing? My current form feels comfortable and natural. Maybe there’s some physiological advantage I’m lacking by not beginning my overhead press from a rack position?

I have shoulder/wrist flexibility issues with using the rack position for front squatting. I usually use the ‘arms-crossed’ method to front squat. While I would like to master the rack position, learning it has been a nuisance.

I appreciate any feedback.

at the end of a power clean, you catch the weight as its vertical acceleration and and is reversed. catching it with your shoulders = your torso will be a lot easier for your body, especially your wrists, in the long run. Concerning wrist flexibility: stretch those mofos. It’s something you can easily do several times a day without looking like a weirdo.
And no, the perfect rack position isn’t cucial for the overhead press. I just think it’s healthier in the long run. Be careful with those cleans anyway, if you do them sloppy they will be tough on your joints and ligaments.

The rack position after a clean is not a position you want to press oht of. With your elbows “up” like that, a press would look more like a tricep extension. The way you are doing it is good, don’t change it.

If your performing a strict overhead press your elbows should be pointing down to a extent if you try to keep your elbows up very high ie the rack position you put your triceps in a horrible position to press. If your performing a push press or jerk type of overhead then you should keep your elbows up otherwise once you dip down with your legs and reverse up hard the weight is going to put a ton of stress on your wrists and probably pull your hands forward making you miss the weight out in front of you unless you have some awesome triceps strength.

Indeed. My form for ‘clean and press’ vs regular power cleans is quite different

Thanks for the feedback, gentlemen.