Category Archives: technique

Common errors in kettlebell long cycle (clean and jerk)


Error Consequences Correction
Feet are wider than shoulder width. Reduction of the distance and speed of acceleration of the kettlebells, worsening of the efficiency of the leg work. Rocking in gymnastic bridge. Static rack holds with two KB (1-5 minutes).
Pausing too long in half-squat (first dip) before send-off (bump). Waste of time, losing tempo, isometric straining of the leg muscles, accumulation of oxygen debt, impeded circulation, and reduction of work capacity. To pay attention to the relaxation of the legs when getting to the half-squat position. It would be correct to call this movement “falling into half-squat”. This way the reversal of the movement will be faster.
Pausing during the under-squat (second dip) after send-off (bump). Waste of time, losing tempo, isometric straining of the leg muscles, accumulation of oxygen debt, impeded circulation, and reduction of work capacity. Getting up from the second dip must start simultaneously with the heels touching the floor and elbows lockout. Instead of simply move the trunk with
the bells up to accentuate maximally fast movement of the knees backwards (knees lockout).
During overhead fixation the palms oriented in frontal plane, i.e. thumbs facing each other. This position precludes relaxation of extensors, triceps fatigue. High risk of the cause, when kettlebell falls down on the athletes head or back. To make sure that during fixation the thumbs are oriented in sagittal plane, i.e. facing backwards and the handles have approximately 45° angle.
The trunk moves forward when dropping the bells from the chest to hang position. After re-gripping the bells back extensors are immediately loaded, and as the result fatigue quickly. When the kettlebells move down the trunk should be deflected backwards. Then, when the bells are re-gripped, the impulse of movement is reduced by the
bells bringing the trunk forward to neutral position. Only after this back extensors get employed.
Early reversal of the back-swing and keeping the leg bent in the dead point of the back-swing. Instead of using pendulum movement of the bells and spend energy only on grip and acceleration pull the athlete has to stop the bells by using the muscles of the legs, back and arms and then start the acceleration pull from the dead point of the back swing. Low swings of two bells and long cycle with extra swings. The acceleration should start at the moment when the forearms are losing contact with the
abdomen. When the bells reach the dead point the legs must be straightened fully.
Cleans to the chest are too high. If an athlete while performing the long cycle for 60 repetitions cleans the bells 2 in higher than necessary the total excessive distance travelled by the bells will equal 10 feet! This is time and energy wasted. One should try place the elbows on the pelvic bones (iliac crest) following the shortest distance.
Starting cleans from the heels, without getting on the toes. Back extensors and trapezius muscle are overloaded and fatigue early. To get on the toes as high as possible during acceleration phase. This will redistribute the load to the calves muscle which, among large muscle groups, have the highest endurance potential.
Holding the breath. Every pause in breathing leads to momentary interruption of oxygen supply and isometric contraction of respiratory muscles. This causes accumulation of oxygen debt and reduction of work capacity. When performing the lift the coach or assistant stands next to the athlete and breathes loudly and synchronously with his movements. The goal of the trainee is to follow breathing pattern of the coach or assistant.

Kettlebell long cycle instructional videos