After working hard over several weeks on cleans and dips for Elizabeth, our next cycle is designed to carry that momentum over to the overhead squat and muscle-ups! This cycle is actually the first in a series–we will be working on the foundation of the snatch this time around with snatch grip deadlifts and overhead squats, before putting it all together in a future cycle. 

Our goal with the overhead squats is to improve strength, endurance, and mobility in the overhead position. Many people struggle with overhead squats due to either a restriction in the back, shoulders, hips, or ankles, or a lack of stability with a weight overhead. We will be targeting these areas with mobility work, as well as in this cycle’s accessory work. In addition, there will be a dedicated strength day for overhead squats to gain experience with a heavier load for this challenging movement. 

The new benchmark test will be “Jeremy” which will allow for improvements in your overhead squat endurance. Jeremy is a benchmark workout designed to honor the memory of a three year old boy who tragically drowned (you can read more here: The original version is: 

Overhead Squats 95/65

Because this is a light weight for those proficient with overhead squats, “Heavy Jeremy” will be offered at 135#/95# for those able to do the original version unbroken.

Additionally, we will be working on snatch grip deadlift and Z-press for strength. The snatch grip deadlift will help reinforce appropriate positions for the snatch, as well as build strength pulling from the floor with a wide grip. The Z-press requires a tremendous amount of core and overhead stability–perfect for developing the overhead squat and snatch.

This cycle we will also test strict muscle ups and work on pulling and transition progressions for the muscle-up. This is a natural extension of all that pull up and dip work you’ve been doing during the last two cycles! Don’t worry if you’re still far away from getting a muscle-up; the drills will give you the opportunity to build strength and technique that will lay the foundation for eventually working the full muscle-up.

Our pre-test of Jeremy will be on Tuesday, October 1st. If you struggle with overhead squats, use this as an opportunity to work on an area of improvement. At the moment–scale the weight down to an empty bar or even a PVC pipe if you need to! Our hope is that at the end of this cycle, you feel stronger and more comfortable with the movement.

Categories: New Focus