Preparing to Overhead Press

Preparing to Overhead Press

In a workout with lots of overhead work (pressing, jerks, snatches) getting in some solid prep work is crucial to optimal performance. The below video covers the movements I thinking are best for preparing to overhead press.

The first exercise I use when preparing to overhead press is what I call the barbell opener which is a great mobilizing shoulders into flexion and extension, both of which are probably important when doing overhead pressing.

As you can, I have an extension and shoulder flexion passive mobility. However, when I try to actively express that shoulder mobility, I cannot move my shoulder through its full available mobility. This lack of end range shoulder flexion stability / motor control is something that many athletes lack and I have been working very hard to correct this lately. The prone PVC pipe lift off is a great exercise for this end range shoulder flexion control. PVC pipe in my overhead pressing grip-width and elbows extended. While keeping my core engages and butt squeezed, lift the PVC pipe is far off the ground under control back to the ground. preparing to overhead press

My other big problem is that I often overextend the lumbar spine so performing some neutral spine positioning work is important to me being able to maintain proper core control while pressing overhead. This dead bug variation is a great tool for working that. I look at jump stretch band around my foot and then hold the opposite end in both hands. While focusing on maintaining a flat back on the ground, I kick the one leg out and then lift both arms overhead. This does a great job of working that spinal positioning motor control while going overhead. From here, I feel that I’ve address the main areas that limit my (and most athlete’s) overhead work from a movement pattern and mobility perspective. preparing to overhead press