Barry Mairs


You are going to spend 98% of your time during this workout with your arms above your head so mobilising is very important and will make for a better position overhead and therefore slow the onset of fatigue.

Looking at the shoulder joint, it’s attachments and it’s movements, we have two ways we can get into the overhead position:

1) through abduction, raising the arms out to the side and overhead;
2) through flexion, raising the arms up to the front and overhead.

In order to get the bar overhead we will do a mixture of the two!

Warm Up
So, let’s first get warm through these ranges of movement. Using a band for front and lateral raises will get blood moving around the area and stimulate the deltoids, very important that these are warm as they protect the shoulder and give stability.

We can then look at mobilising for a better overhead position, opening up the scapula and releasing the lats will mean we can have a closer grip on the bar. A closer grip means less fatigue for the arms and shoulders.

Get the lats released on the foam roller making sure you come all the way up into the arm pit and all the way down to the lower back. Then open up the scapula by getting a lacrosse ball around the border of each shoulder blade and moving the arm from the side to over head through as much range as possible. Make sure you get round the whole scapula and trap area, pay special attention to the base of the scapula as this can often be a sticky point for the over head position.

Warming up the neck by gentle forward and back and side to side motion is important to realise and relax the traps.

Further resources
Here are a few videos for some extra bits for you to look at. Some awesome stuff here:

The Simple Five Way Shoulder | Feat. Kelly Starrett | Ep. 211 | MobilityWOD:

Scapular Mobility | Feat. Kelly Starrett | MobilityWOD:

Tight Shoulders? Clean up your lats. | Feat. Kelly Starrett | MobilityWOD:

CFJ KStarr 2Min Shoulder Mobility Drills – Manchester Personal…:

CFJ KStarr 2Min Shoulder Mobility Drills – Manchester Personal…:

CFJ KStarr 2Min Shoulder Mobility Drills Part – Manchester Persona…:

CFJ KStarr 2Min Shoulder mobility drills – Manchester Personal…:

Second thing we need to look at is the squat mobility and warm up.

Warm Up
Again lets start by warming the area. Complete a very gentle 5 minute cycle to activate the muscles, then do a few air squats, nice and steady, and think about where it is you are tight.

Areas we need to look at here are hip flexors, hip extensors, hip internal and external rotators.
Here is a link to an awesome mobility video for preparing the overhead squat position:

Overhead squat/snatch prep | Feat. Kelly Starrett | Ep. 71 | MobilityWOD:

My advice would be to NOT take a pre workout before this as it make increase your pump in your forearms and blow your grip for the pull ups.

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