3 Ways To Instantly Strengthen Your Pull
I realize this is a click-baity title, but so many of you make your pulls so much harder than they need to, so here we are.
Step one is bracing your trunk maximally. This does 2 things: First, greater trunk rigidity transmits more of the leg and hip force you’re producing to the bar, meaning more bar speed for a given level of effort.
Second, bracing increases the body’s ability to generate force neurologically—bracing more forcefully will literally make you stronger. I see you guys sip a teaspoon of air and then daintily try to isolate your transverse abdominis like you’re hoping to impress someone on the beach rather than lift a heavy weight. Get a full breath, and lock down every trunk muscle you own like your guts are trying to escape. That means your front abs, your side abs, your back abs, your lung abs, your taint abs… all of it!
Step 2 is to move as fast as possible without compromising the proper position and balance. The actual speed doesn’t matter here, only the intent to generate it. The faster you try to move, the stronger you’ll feel. A simple example of this is how the same weight feels much heavier and slower when doing a pull relative to a snatch or clean in which you’re mentally committed to and expecting maximal speed. Try to replicate that effort in pulls and deadlifts.
Finally, consider using a dynamic start. Reserve this for after you’ve established technical consistency in your start and first pull—prior to this you won’t be lifting enough to really make this necessary anyway. A dynamic start is a way to generate more force through pre-tensioning and/or a stretch-shortening reflex prior to bar separation. This allows more weight to be lifted with greater speed and less effort through the most mechanically difficult range of motion.
Aside from the obvious physical benefit, this is a big boost psychologically, and inspires more commitment and effort.