Saturday, June 6, 2009

Long Cycle Clean and Jerk

There are two traditional lifts in GS (girevoy sport; "girevoy" is Russian for "kettlebell"). The lifts are the snatch and the jerk. The jerk is performed holding two kettlebells. It is an explosive pressing movement that uses the legs as well as the arms. The snatch is a one-armed snatch; the competitor switches hands once during the time allotted. Contestants are allowed ten minutes for each lift. There is usually at least an hour between lifts.
My favorite kettlebell exercise is the "long cycle" clean and jerk ("LC"). It is a newer competition lift, although it is now a well-established event in GS. In LC, the girevik (Russian for "kettlebell lifter") lifts two kettlebells off the ground to his shoulders (the "clean") and then jerks them both overhead. He then lowers them to his shoulders, then lowers them again between his legs, then resumes the exercise.
I like LC because it works the entire body. I think I also like it because one body part does not get appreciably more fatigued before the others. If anything wears out first for me it is my wrists. But I guess that is not a bad thing. One of the benefits of GS is the strength-endurance it builds in a girevik's connective tissues as well as his muscles. Strong wrists are a useful and valuable attribute for everyday life.
In full disclosure, I must admit that I have progressed in LC much faster than I have in the snatch or the jerk. It just comes naturally to me.
Here is a video example of the long cycle clean and jerk:

1 comment:

  1. Heave Ho. Heave ho. High ho. High ho. This is something else. I should get into the kettling. It sure beats caroling and bar bellowing.

    Good show.