One of the most common questions we get is, “How do I learn to slam my hips into the barbell?”
While there is hip involvement in the Olympic lifts, the LEGS are the primary driver.Overall, we want to keep the barbell close to the body…and close means on the thighs. We often say, “If the barbell is off your body, it’s too far away,” and if it’s too far away, we can’t push straight down.
Vertical ground force is produced primarily with the legs, not the hip — and while slamming your hips purposely into the barbell might feel fast and violent, it produces a horizontal force that destroys lifts before they even have a chance to get overhead.
When using a proper leg drive:
✅We produce a vertical jumping force
✅We push against the ground
✅We propel the barbell upward
When using improper hip drive:
🚫We produce a horizontal force
🚫We push through the barbell
🚫We propel the barbell forward
Part 1 shows leg drive versus hip drive outside of the context of Weightlifting while part 2 shows both leg drive and hip drive in a Weightlifting application. No matter the context, if we are trying to lift an external object vertically, creating horizontal drive and displacement is counterproductive. Jump, don’t hump!