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Stinking Dylan

How to programme cleans

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I've just started on the 16 week Juggernaut programme.  It's structured the same as my current programme (4 day week, squat/press/deadlift/bench), so it's a smooth transition.

But, my favourite exercise in cleans. I think I get decent benefit from them due to me being predominantly slow twitch (years of endurance competing), so teaches me speed and power. Plus, they are a good conditioning exercise without placing additional strain on the shoulders.

I'm struggling as to how to programme them without screwing up progress.

Options are;

  1. Include them on one or both of the upper days (press and/or bench).
  2. Include them on the squat day as a squat/core accessory (but also doing RDL as an accessory on this day)
  3. Don't really want to include them on deadlift day as I'm going to be pretty fried
  4. Change the press day to a clean day, but still do strict press on this day, just lower volume/intensity.

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On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 5:58 PM, Stinking Dylan said:

How to programme cleans

That's easy mate, but first we need to establish few things. It would help greatly if you (momentarily) think like an Olympic weightlifter, since we'll be discussing a movement that belongs to that sport. So first off (and I've been through this before on UK-M), that when a member says "clean", what he or she really means is power clean. I said you need to think like an OW remember. This may come as a surprise to some, however it's true. A front squat is viewed as an isolation exercise ... similarly a back squat, or even a deadlift (or rather an explosive pull off of the platform) ... a press overhead, or a bench press..., all these are viewed by an OW as isolation exercises (not in the sense of [say] a military press and a side lateral is to a bodybuilder, but more so based on the number of exercises the lifter is doing within that one single move).

So the only two movements that are viewed as full compound exercises, would be the clean (as in the full clean, irrespective whether you follow that up by an overhead jerk or not), and a full snatch...., that's it. So basically anything you pull off of the platform then dive underneath it to catch it in the ATG position, is classified as a full and comprehensive move (comprised of at least two lifts, namely a pull that is immediately followed by a full squat), otherwise, it's an isolation exercise (as far as the mindset of an Olympic weightlifter goes).

Having established the above then, what we'd be dealing with here (as far as your power clean is concerned), is an isolation exercise.

On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 5:58 PM, Stinking Dylan said:

my favourite exercise in cleans.

Great, I'm glad you wrote that.

On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 5:58 PM, Stinking Dylan said:

I'm struggling as to how to programme them without screwing up progress.

If you're training like this:

On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 5:58 PM, Stinking Dylan said:

(4 day week, squat/press/deadlift/bench),

 ...you include them on each and every day you train, and you do them before any other exercise, for more reasons than one. One of the respectable members here @Endomorph84 has already contributed with the following reasoning:

On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 6:10 PM, Endomorph84 said:

I’d start with them myself to fire up your CNS which makes a massive difference.

I couldn't agree with him more if I tried, firstly because he's correct, and secondly because of what you wrote here:

On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 9:21 PM, Stinking Dylan said:

as long as I keep them light and concentrate more on technique...

I'm going to help you define "light" as it relates within the world of Olympic weightlifting ok. For another good measure, I'm going to also take what you wrote here into account, this way I'll help you hit tow birds with one stone. Let's do it ...

On ‎6‎/‎20‎/‎2019 at 5:58 PM, Stinking Dylan said:

Plus, they are a good conditioning exercise without placing additional strain on the shoulders.

So what we're going to be dealing with here is twofold:

1. Power/explosiveness.

2. Endurance.

What is classified as "light" in OW?

Between 65% and 72% of your 1RM is classified as light ok. Now since we'll be dealing with two goals instead of just the one, you will be utilising both of these percentages applied for two different rep ranges, one for lightning speed, whilst the other (though still fast of course), would be geared more towards muscular endurance.

Here's how it'll look on paper, if for example your 1RM power clean was sitting at 100kg:

65% =  65kg 5x3

72% = 72.5kg 3x5

Nothing to it, and it will not drain your energy ... if anything, it'll wake up each and every fiber in your body that was not full awake already..., ready to do battle with whatever it is you are to throw at it.

Please note that, we're not discussing a competition preparatory phase here ok; we're simply focusing on technique and endurance. To give you an example of where I was at with my own power cleans in yesteryears, and as the contest nears, I'd obviously be increasing the percentages of the weights lifted, whilst simultaneously decreasing the rep ranges all the way down to doubles and singles. My best power clean at the time at a bodyweight of about 73kg, was 140kg. So I'd follow the percentages I've shared with you above, in addition to upping the antes to percentages falling between 82% to 87% for doubles, equating to a lift of/between 115kg and 122.5kg..., and from there to yet a higher percentage (88%+) with now only singles being performed.

I hope (if nothing at all), the above has somewhat given you a different perspective on how and why OWs do what they do.

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Sorry, I didn't notice the additional replies.

Thank you both, some very helpful information here.

I was currently doing power cleans on my deadlift day, and full cleans on my squat day (or usually power clean + hang clean ATG).

I think on my next block I will start doing them every training day using the rep structure @Fadi suggests (and yes, I train squat, bench, deadlift, press).

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On 20/06/2019 at 8:58 AM, Stinking Dylan said:

I've just started on the 16 week Juggernaut programme.  It's structured the same as my current programme (4 day week, squat/press/deadlift/bench), so it's a smooth transition.

But, my favourite exercise in cleans. I think I get decent benefit from them due to me being predominantly slow twitch (years of endurance competing), so teaches me speed and power. Plus, they are a good conditioning exercise without placing additional strain on the shoulders.

I'm struggling as to how to programme them without screwing up progress.

Options are;

  1. Include them on one or both of the upper days (press and/or bench).
  2. Include them on the squat day as a squat/core accessory (but also doing RDL as an accessory on this day)
  3. Don't really want to include them on deadlift day as I'm going to be pretty fried
  4. Change the press day to a clean day, but still do strict press on this day, just lower volume/intensity.

I know this is old but thought I’d put it out there. If you read the Juggernaut 2.0 manual Chad has a whole section dedicated to explaining the incorporation of Oly lifts. There is tons of useful info in that manual. :) 

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On 11/20/2019 at 1:47 PM, Quackerz said:

I know this is old but thought I’d put it out there. If you read the Juggernaut 2.0 manual Chad has a whole section dedicated to explaining the incorporation of Oly lifts. There is tons of useful info in that manual. :) 

Funny enough, that is the programme I'm now following. :D

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