The Push Jerk, demonstrated here by Julie Foucher, CrossFit Level 1 Seminar Staff member, is similar to the Push Press in that we have the same set-up, we dip and drive through the heels, hit full hip extension and then use this hip generated momentum to press the barbell overhead. However as soon as the barbell starts to move, we add in one tricky little extra movement – we let the knees and hips bend and the body drop a little as fast as possible. This means that we don’t have to press the barbell quite as high as if we were standing upright, which in turn means we can lift heavier weights.
You may feel very unco-ordinated when you first start playing with the Push Jerk – it feels like you should be moving in several different directions at once and the more you think about it, the more it falls apart! But don’t worry, it’s really just a timing issue and with a bit of practise, you will find it falling into place and you’ll be moving that bar like a pro! Key to getting this movement right is making sure you have a solid Push Press (i.e. driving through the heels and not pressing with the arms until the hips reach full extension). If you don’t have the Push Press nailed down, then likely your body will be trying to do several things at once when you start working on the Push Jerk.