One of the things often seen with double unders is an overextension of the back. When the body isn’t in an ideal position to start, it is going to be more difficult to have control of the rope and the body, making an already challenging movement even harder. Brining the shoulders over the hips and the hips over the ankles is the first step. This stacked position makes for more efficient jumping and gives athletes better leverage to spin the rope. Imagine how much harder it would be to whisk eggs or drive a car while leaning back. Brining the shoulders back in line with the hips will also likely bring the hands into their resting position, just in front outside and in front the hips with the palms facing out.
10 Seconds Overextended Jumps (No Rope)
10 Seconds Stacked Jumps (No Rope)
15 Seconds Fast Single Unders
15 Seconds Higher Single Unders
15 Seconds Double Taps
15 Seconds Double Under Practice
60 Single Unders
30 Seconds of Double Under Attempts
Clean and Jerks
Jump & Drop With Weight Back
With a lot of jump rope in the workout today, that means athletes will be moving from a front foot dominated movement (double unders) to a full foot dominated movement. This makes it more likely that they will jump and land from the toes when cleaning or jerking the bar overhead. When this happens, the bar will feel heavier and out of position. It is important today that whenever jumping or landing, that the whole foot is on the ground to help generate power from all the legs and maintain balance. Three simple words: whole foot down.
Establish Clean Receiving Position
2 High Hang Power Cleans
2 Hang Power Cleans
2 Power Cleans
2 Strict Press
2 Push Press
Establish Jerk Receiving Position
4 Push Jerks
3 Clean and Jerks
Build to lighter weight
Hips Back, Knees Out
The air squats are by far the easiest movement of the workout, but how we perform these can make the row easier or harder. Especially when trying to go fast, it is common to see athletes lead with the knees on the way down. In this scenario, athletes are more quad dominant and unless they have very good ankle mobility, their heels will likely come off the ground. We will use squat therapy to help athletes do the common uncommonly well.
Banded Squat Therapy – 10 Repetitions on Coach
Squat Therapy is a great evaluator of common errors in the squat and can help to dial in mechanics, while banded squats help prime the lower body for effective squatting. Today we are combining these two drills into one. If your gym is equipped with mini bands, have athletes place the band just below the knee. You may also double or triple loop a low tension band. Athletes will face a wall or a barbell placed in a rack, leaving enough room for them to squat to full depth. At first, we are looking to squat to full depth, with the hip crease passing below the top of the knee. Using plates or a medicine ball can be a good landmark for athletes. The torso may not be upright, almost in an immature squat position, but this is ok if other points of performance are met at the beginning. Athletes will place both hands overhead and want to avoid touching the wall during their squat. Hands extended overhead forces them to keep the core braced and recruits the muscles of the back. This braced and upright position is beneficial in all squat, but especially the overhead squat. Distance from the wall can be adjusted based on the athlete. During the squat, athletes will work to:
1. Spread the floor apart with the feet
2. Maintain lumbar curve
3. Send the hips down and back
4. Have the knees track over the toes
5. Keep the heels grounded
6. Hips below crease of knee
Transitioning from air squats to the rower, making sure the straps are set to the appropriate tightness will allow for powerful strokes and reduced transition time. They should be loose enough where athletes don’t have to worry about using their hands to adjust, but tight enough so that the feet do not lose too much contact with the foot plate during the drive.
How Far Forward?
When athletes pick up their handle to begin their stroke, the handle travels from directly above it’s place holder. However, on subsequent strokes the added momentum can cause the handle to pass forward of this location. This is natural, but what isn’t normal is for the handle to travel well past its starting place. When this happens, it is likely that athletes are overreaching and rounding the upper back. Let’s use the starting point for the handle today as a reference during the stroke. Length is good, but only good length.
5 Transitions In and Out of Straps
:30 Seconds of Rowing
Lateral Rower Burpees
Hit the Deck
With only 10 repetitions of burpees to finish the round out, we want to spend as little time as possible in the air. Whether athletes are just getting out of the rower for their first rep or it is their second to last rep, hitting the deck as fast as possible will increase cycle time. If athletes are getting on the ground fast, that means they are also staying low to the floor, as there is no need to stand up between reps.
3 Frog Hops
3 Lateral Rower Burpees
Chest to Bar Pull-ups / Pull-ups
We can relate the grip on the pull-up to that of the snatch. If athletes were to snatch with a very narrow grip, it would make for a very long distance to lockout and demands more out of the arms. Widening the grip out makes the turnover much quicker and gets the lats and upper back more involved than the biceps. This also goes for the chest to bar pull-up. Widening the grip a little further outside of shoulder width makes for an easier range of motion, and takes some of the workload off the upper arm. This can be said for the standard pull-up as well, but is more prominent on the chest to bar due to it’s increased range of motion.
Just like with any core to extremity movement, the bigger muscles pass off to the smaller muscles. In this case, the hips should do most of the work, with the upper body simply finishing the movement by guiding the chest to the bar or the chin over the bar. If athletes are muscling their pull-ups with their arms, their is a good chance they’re going to do the same thing on the barbell. Hips, then arms.
10 Scap Pull-ups
10 Kip Swings
1-3 Strict Pull-ups
3 Chest to Bar Pull-ups
Meet the Bar
We often talk about getting a lot of power out of the hips, but since we power snatch more than we squat snatch, it may be more difficult for athletes to meet the bar as they pull themselves under into the squat. This problem can also occur in the power snatch, but is more common in the squat variation. At a lighter weight, if they try and jump the bar to where they are used to in the power movement, it can lead to balance issues when receiving the bar. This is because the bar is still traveling upwards as they are settling in the opposite direction. We still want to use the hips as the main power source, but in a controlled manner. We wouldn’t snatch a 95# barbell like we would a 185#, just like we wouldn’t jump on a 20” box like we would a 30”. Only doing as much work as is required leads to better balance here.
There is often a rush to stand up out of the bottom of a snatch or an overhead squat. While a sense of urgency is usually good for scores, here it can lead to stability issues. It is common to see athletes stand up when the weight is in the toes or when they are trying to control the bar. It is much more difficult to find a balance when moving than it is when static. It is better to take the extra half second in the bottom than it is to rush the way up.
5 Power Snatch Balances
2 High Hang Power Snatches
2 Hang Power Snatches
2 Power Snatches
5 Squat Snatch Balances or 5 Overhead Squats (Pause in Bottom)
2 High Hang Squat Snatches or High Hang Power Snatches
2 Hang Squat Snatches or Hang Power Snatches
2 Squat Snatches or Power Snatches
Build to lighter weight
With multiples athletes working through the bike, there will be some built in rest. When a new athlete hops on the bike for their turn, a sprint start will blast the wattage through the roof and help teams accumulate more calories. More power in, more calories out.
The goal on the bike can be to keep the wheel spinning as fast as possible for as long as possible. The less time an athlete isn’t on the bike, the longer the wheel will be moving. Teams can practice which direction they plan on getting on and off the rower to minimize transition times. This combined with a fast start means time well spent at this station.
:15 Second Sprint Per Athlete
The more aggressive the lean, the faster the speed. You see this with sprinters vs. marathon runners. Sprinters have a much for aggressive fall angle. The more horizontal athletes are, the faster the sled will move today.
In running, longer strides and more time in contact with the ground does not always equal faster splits or higher intensity. Sometimes, a faster cadence and less time with the feet on the ground gets the job done better. Same idea with the prowler. The faster the feet move and the more steps athletes get in, the quicker they get to their rest period.
100 Meter Team Empty Prowler Push
Load Prowler With Weight
100 Meter Team Prowler Push
Pull the Weight
When rowing, athletes can imagine that there is a weight attached to the chain 500 meters in the distance. With each stroke, the weight gets a little closer to the front of the erg. Imagining an external object being pulled in makes it more likely that athletes will use their whole bodyweight to move the weight as opposed to just one part of their body.
:20 Second Easy Row
:20 Second Medium Row
:20 Second Fast Row
Continuous For 1:00
The proven way to run faster is to fall more. The further athletes fall forward, the faster they will go. The more upright they are, the slower they will go. A more pronounced angle of falling is the “go button”. To avoid actually falling, athletes will have to naturally increase the frequency of their stride. This means taking more steps over the course of their 400 meter runs.
5 “Falling” 50 Meter Runs