CrossFitters or Olympic Lifters! Trying to improve your lifts, but can’t seem to hit the positions you need to hit in order to make gains?
If you don’t have the proper mobility in order to hit the positions, you will never truly improve to where you want to.
In order to get into a full squat and keep the torso upright, which is required for both cleans and snatches, you need proper hip, knee, and ankle mobility. When you don’t have proper mobility, this is when you tend to land more forward, on your toes, are unable to get your hips all the way down, and/or notice your trunk leaning more forward (horizontally) rather than upright (vertical).
In order to get your arms overhead and back enough to stabilize the bar with snatches, overhead squats, or jerks, you need proper thoracic and shoulder mobility. When you don’t have proper mobility, the bar tends to stay forward, which causes you to be unable to sustain any sort of weight overhead without stress or strain in your upper back or shoulders.
So, rather than continuing to only work on technique of the lifts and hitting the positions, try taking 30 minutes a day (or at least 5 days a week) to work on mobility so you can actually hit the necessary positions safely and in a stable manner.
If you have never worked mobility, you must be patient. The longer your joints and muscles have been tight/stiff in their “happy” positions, the longer it is going to take to get things moving better. And, mobility work is not comfortable. If the joints and/or soft tissues have not moved in those ranges for many years, they are not going to be happy there initially. Over time, you will notice the positions getting more comfortable and being able to get further into the stretches/positions.
It is time to start making gains!