During open gym hours a few weeks ago, I was working on my snatch. I was working with a weight that’s relatively easy for me to get up, but for the life of me, I just couldn’t stick the catch. After roughly 7 failed attempts, I proceeded to <expletive> and kick the brick wall with my shoe (Brick Wall – 1, Eric – 0). Deep in concentration and frustration, I was unaware that there was other people around until I heard Traver say “Dude…did you just kick the wall?” Yes…yes sir, I did.
So, my question to you is when does one move on? It’s a question we, as coaches, are almost certain to hear during lifting days at CPC. It’s a great question and the answer is rarely a straight forward one.
I recently read this article by Greg Everett entitled “When to Move on, and When to Punch Your Missed Lift in it’s Stupid Little Mouth”. I suggest reading the entire article as it’s not that long, but here’s a tasty little snippet:
“There are two basic responses following a missed lift: To accept it and move on, or to refuse to fail and fight back. Neither is always the best choice, and it isn’t always easy to know how to proceed after a missed lift. I’m going to explain how I approach this particular issue with the understanding that it’s not by any means perfect, and that there will certainly be times in your lifting careers in which going against the following advice is the smart call.”
When it comes to Powerlifting (squats, presses, deadlifts, etc), I usually stand by the rule of threes. If you attempt a lift three times and don’t get it, then the weight has won that day. That doesn’t mean you try once without even getting the bar to move and then stubbornly try two more times to satisfy an arbitrary rule and risking injury. It means you consult with your coach and then your gut. Be honest with yourself and realize that it won’t be the last time you see that lift.
When it comes to the Olympic lifts (snatch, clean, and jerk), the factors can be numerous. These are considerably more technical and dynamic which increases the variables quite a bit. It’s important to understand that the technicality and multitude of muscles groups contracting/relaxing demands a lot from your central nervous system. Your CNS tires quickly in comparison to your muscles (hence the reason we work technical movements at the beginning of our workouts) and will result in degradation of speed, concentration, and accuracy.
Some other things to consider: Was it a mistake or failure? Are you feeling confident or shaken? Are you willing to get under that bar today? Are you exhausted or energetic? How much more training do you have after? Are you holding up the class or your lifting partner(s)? Is the weight preventing you from doing the movement correctly or advancing in proficiency?
Front Squats (135#/95#)
Power Cleans (135#/95#)