Is power clean so good ?

I have read a lot of good thinks why to do power clean.But I have never read that Ben did clean and he was very fast and explosiv.
Charlie, why did you not use power clean in Ben’s workout ? Thanks

i believe charlie stated ben had horrible form when they first tried to incorporate them, and at the time he was too strong to learn how to do them correctly.

Pav I haven’t heard anyone used thinks that way since matthew henry did it back in the late 1600’s or so. He used to say methinks…as in one word. But his writing style was and still is incredibile. So methinks ben did do cleans, and at one point deadlift. Pavel in the cfts methinks it tells the lifts for each of charlies athletes. Methinks to check it out!!! And also Methinks you can be very fast and explosive without cleans. No but seriously check out charlies books if you cant find the page drop me a line and ill tell you. Goodluck

Ben never did cleans. He tried and sucked at it so Charlie removed them from his program. Better to not do them than to do them wrong. They are high risk for injury.

Gotta agree with Herb, cleans require a skill to be learned. If you can do it, do them, if you can’t - don’t.

Pretty much the same with any exercise that requires a skill

Some athletes gain mass very easily…cleans might be an option if they grow from just smelling a gym.

I do apologize. I thought of course-things. Thank you !

But to drop it from the program he had to be doing cleans at one point. How long before he dropped. (I forget he dropped it good point).

I have asked this before but it seemed to have disappeared… Would you remove the lifts from the lifters/sprinters routine or maybe lower the weight to where the athlete is performing it with better form?

Originally posted by Noshe
I have asked this before but it seemed to have disappeared… Would you remove the lifts from the lifters/sprinters routine or maybe lower the weight to where the athlete is performing it with better form?

Does anyone have an opinion on this?

Well I had pretty bad form before, I used to muscle everything up.

I lowered the weight back to 135lbs and did every clean from the hang from the mid thigh. I did this for a few months. That helped up my form and while I have ways to go, it’s much betetr now, and I finally have the snap and speed in my powercleans.

Whetehr Ben did them is a good guage on the effectiveness of cleans. One mans garbage is anothers gold. I would say it can make an individual quite explosive.

I was having trouble with my cleans, you could look back at some of my post. Cleans are my weak point in my lifts, but the last few weeks I lower the weighted, now I feel I am using better form, and really whippiung the weight up.

posed by noshe
Does anyone have an opinion on this?

Yes I do. Of course lowing the weight will help you get better form. Just like running slower say 95% will help an athlete who has poor sprint form get better sprint form. I think that Charlie figured it was a waste of time probally for a couple of reasons. One he would have had to knock the weight so far back that ben would’nt really have gained anything from it. Two he would have had to perform these very slow do has his very bad form. THree it would of probally token to long to teach ben the form. Or four ben just could flat out not do the form no matter what. But Im sure an athelete of bens status being able to control his body in other ways could have learned the proper form over time. In my opinion though that was very smart to cut them from the program. Can’t argue with someone who has coached 23 world records.

Maybe the work and time necessary for Ben to master the powerclean wasn’t worth the effort taking into account the time lost working on other ciritical lifts/sprint work.

Also maybe there was a fear of injury as well.


I am currently in a maintance phase and for lifting i was doing cleans, bench, squats… but recently I decided to drop the cleans and focus more on str lifts. so now i am down to squata and bench, is there something i should add in, not to take the place of the cleans. I just feel that squat and bench is not enough, any suggestions…

something for your back would be a good idea, otherwise you are going to run into muscle imbalances from your benching

Rows and some external rotation

Again, there are many ways to train and power cleans are obviously an effective alternative for many athletes.

However, I will give my opinion that suggests that the exercise may be overated.

First, i have power cleaned 155kg at a bodyweight of 98kg (without straps) and could barely run 11.5 hand at the time. The reason was that I had a very strong back and did not utilise my legs enough to get the full benefit. I f i did the exercise properly, i would have been training with a much lighter weight, an aspect i could not be bothered with. Hence, I chose exercises that directly strengthened the muscles i was concerned with; that being squats, leg curls, hypers, calf raises and situps. I have also noticed that I tended to run faster when my squat was up rather than my power clean. When I read that Francis had removed cleans from Ben Johnson’s program, this only confirmed my view,

Second, i believe that olympic lifts are a skill in their own right and can cuase unnecessary injuries. I did manage to break a wrist training under a commonwealth gold medalist. Why risk an injury when an athlete can get the same exposive benefit from combining strength exercises and plyometrics, not to mention track itself.