Football Olympic Weightlifting: Behind the Neck Jerk – Garage Strength

Football Olympic Weightlifting: Behind the Neck Jerk

The behind the neck jerk is a forgotten strength movement in the football industry. Most strength coaches forget how useful and effective it is in strength development for a football player. Our football players utilize this movement frequently, and is a big factor in why we get the results we do. Here are the main reasons football players need to utilize the behind the neck jerk.

Nervous System Improvement: Do you know how important your nervous system is in football? The nervous system controls a ton of things such as conscious action (catching, running, throwing) and also non-conscious actions (breathing, heart rate, adrenaline). The behind the neck jerk will improve your nervous system by utilizing multiple muscles at a time to achieve a strength movement. The connection your body has to make to drive the weight overhead, lock the arms out, and stand up is done in half a second. The better you get at the behind the neck jerk, the better your nervous system will be in return, which will translate to more success on the field. A healthy nervous system will also help prevent injury. When someone gets knocked out or blacked out, it is due to damage of the brain. Creating a solid foundation for the nervous system will help reduce these injuries, and ultimately lead to a long and successful football career.

Shoulder Strength and Injury Prevention: The behind the neck jerk will provide great stability for the shoulders and will help to make them super strong and mobile to also help prevent injuries. Your shoulders are used often when tackling in football, and are especially used in the wide receiver, running back, and the linebacker positions. As a linebacker, you are more susceptible to a shoulder injury due to the amount of tackles that are made. The stronger your shoulders are, the more force you’ll have in your hit, and the more likely you are to not have an injury. The behind the neck jerk will train your muscles in absorbing and applying force. This will help with holding a block, catching a pass, or busting through tackles when carrying the ball.

Explosive Movements for Speed and Power: The legs are a huge factor in a big behind the neck jerk. To be able to get the weight overhead in a proper position, you will need to apply a massive amount of force up into the bar. This applied force will make the football player super explosive and fast off the line, or after a catch. The ability to apply force in a very short amount of time is what will differentiate you from a mediocre football player.

The behind the neck jerk is a great way to get and stay one step ahead of your competition on and off the field. Be sure to check out our movement library on this exercise to be sure you are performing it properly. Don’t forget, we also offer an Off-Season Football Program that is perfect for getting you ready for next year’s season!

Check out the Pause at the Knee Power Snatch blog and how it relates to football! 

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