Get better at your Front Rack

We use the Front Rack position for all our Presses, Front Squat and Cleans. It is very common for athletes to struggle with this position and cause pain in the wrist. If you have problems in your Front Rack it will effect your presses and Front Squat. 

This is usually caused by some tight muscles throughout your upper body such as the latissimus dorsi, teres major, posterior deltoid, and triceps. The wrist flexors are also a common culprit.

Here some tips on how you can mobilise before you start pressing, cleaning or squatting:

1. Start with a length of PVC pipe, grip it in your left hand with your thumb pointed downward

 

2. The PVC should rest on the outside of your left arm, grip the lower portion with your right hand.
3. Keep your left elbow pointed forward as if you were in a rack position. Keep your shoulder back and down.

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4. Using the back of your left arm as a pivot, pull the PVC pipe up with your right hand to externally rotate your upper arm.
5. You should feel a stretch in the back of your shoulder and/or the back of your armpit.

 

Once you are in a stretched position, implement contract-relax techniques to make this stretch even more effective. Contract for 5 seconds by internally rotating your left arm as if you were arm wrestling. Relax for 10 seconds but keep tension by continuing to apply tension with your right arm. Five cycles of 5 seconds on and 10 seconds off is the standard prescription.

Before you start on your other arm do a test and check out the difference.

An other important part to mobilise to help your Rack Position is the Thoracic Spine (Upper Back)

Get 2 lacrosse Balls and tape them together in the shape of a peanut. Here is what you need to do with it:

1. Start with the balls aligned properly on the middle of your back and your head touching the floor. Your arms should be at a 45 degree angle to the floor.

 

2. Perform 3 to 5 mini-crunches, each time returning the back of the head to floor and keeping the arms at 45 degrees.

 

3. Roll toward your upper back 1 to 3 inches and repeat step 2. Continue until you reach the traps.

Both of these mobility drills only take a few minutes so you can easily fit this in before your session start.