Push Jerk Crossfit: Dynamic Exercise for Total Body Toning

For lifting heavy weights overhead, the push jerk is the most efficient and effective of the nine basic CrossFit actions.

This tutorial will walk you through the signals of the push jerk, how it relates to related exercises like the power jerk and push press, and suggestions and technique for completing the push jerk in CrossFit, whether you are an aspiring Olympic weightlifter or a CrossFit competitor.

What Exactly Is Push Jerk?

The push jerk is an overhead activity that needs strength, coordination, and excellent overhead mobility. It is one of the nine core CrossFit movements.

To do a proper push jerk, take the bar off of the rack with a grip slightly broader than shoulder width.

Coaching signals for launching into the push jerk:

  • Standing shoulder-width apart
  • Outside the shoulders, place your hands.
  • Elbows slightly bent in front of the bar
  • Tight buttocks, tight buttocks

Consider four signals when performing the movement: “dip,” “drive,” “catch,” and “stand.”

  • “Dip”- bend your knees and maintain your core firm to dip down gently. Slightly is not the same as a quarter squat.
  • “Push”- drive the bar up explosively, utilizing the momentum produced by driving through your heels during the dip.
  • “Catch”- drop below the bar when the bar clears your head. If you do it correctly, your arms will lock out and you will “catch” the bar in a similar dip position with the bar locked overhead.
  • “Stand” means to entirely stand up to complete the rep. Maintain a strong core while locking your knees, elbows, and hips.

Advantages of a Push Jerk

What is Push Jerk Crossfit

For CrossFit competitors, the push jerk improves shoulder strength, coordination, and the ability to sequence exercises.

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The primary advantage of the push jerk in CrossFit is that it’s one of the finest methods to maximize the amount of weight you can throw overhead.

New coaches learn during the CrossFit Level I certification that they may estimate their three overhead lifts (shoulder press, push press, and push jerk) by adding 30% to each.

So, if your shoulder press is 95 pounds, you may expect your push press to be approximately 125 pounds. You may anticipate to push jerk roughly 160lbs with this amount on the push press.

What Muscles Are Exercised When You Do Push Jerk?

How To Do Crossfit Push Jerk

The push jerk works your shoulders, triceps, hips, abdominals, glutes, quadriceps, and calves. You are performing a complex exercise with your entire body, as with most CrossFit workouts.

Moving the bar aloft in this manner needs more than just powerful arms and shoulders.

Throughout the lift, you employ your lower body and core muscles.

Before starting the “dip” component of the push jerk, throughout the “catch” portion of the lift, and during the preparation for the following repeat.

Tip For Movement: The Hang Clean vs Push Jerk

Performance Points:

  • Lift the bar to the hang position by deadlifting it.
  • Extend your hips and legs quickly.
  • Shoulders shrug, followed by an arm pull beneath.
  • The bar is accepted in a full squat, and the stand is raised.
  • The torso drops straight down.
  • The hips and legs extend quickly, and the press under is performed.
  • In a half squat, take the bar.
  • Bring your feet together, one at a time.
  • When the hips, knees, and arms achieve full extension, the exercise is finished.

Push Press vs. Push Jerk

How To Do Push Jerk Crossfit

CrossFit considers the push jerk and push press to be essential activities.

The “catch,” or lowering below the bar, element of the push jerk distinguishes the two lifts.

Your max will be determined by how far you can move the bar by simply sinking and driving it to a lock out when performing a push press.

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Technique is more important in the push jerk. Athletes who can timing their descent under the bar to lock it out will undoubtedly be able to lift more weight than those who use the typical push press.

As previously stated, athletes may anticipate to push jerk 30 percent more weight than they push press, if both movements are performed correctly.

Push Jerk with Dumbbells vs. Push Jerk with Barbells

The dumbbell push jerk is executed in the same manner as the barbell push jerk, but with different equipment.

If you have shoulder or wrist issues that make sitting in the front rack position unpleasant, consider the dumbbell push jerk.

With a neutral grip, the dumbbells may feel more comfortable since they may rest on your shoulder.

How To Do Push Jerk Step by Step

Here are a few points to focus on for novices while completing the push jerk in CrossFit:

  1. Keep your heels on the ground. Because of the weighted barbell in front of their torso, many beginning CrossFit athletes have a propensity to sink forward onto their toes. Remember that when you commence the lift, your heels are the starting point for producing force through the floor.
  2. Begin slowly until you’ve mastered the method. You should start light before increasing your weight by 30% from your 1RM push press. Learning the sequence of events on the push jerk takes time, and you’re unlikely to do it properly the first time. Having a skilled coach keep an eye on you might help to speed up the process.
  3. Remove your head from the way. The bar must glide passed your head without striking your chin or face, as with any overhead lift. This is one of the reasons you should begin light.
  4. Complete each rep. Because you’re continually dipping to get the next rep overhead, make sure you fully lock out the bar and stop for a second at the top before starting the next repeat. Start the next rep by bending your knees until the bar is back at your shoulders.
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Notes For Push Jerk

The names power jerk and push jerk are sometimes used interchangeably, but we consider them to be two unique exercises—the feet lift and move in the power jerk, but remain attached to the floor in the push jerk.

You can put your feet in either a drive or a squat position.

Last Words For Push Jerk

In competition, a lifter’s preferred jerk style may be the push jerk.

Weightlifters can use it as a training exercise to improve their drive on the bar, balance in the dip and drive, a more precise vertical drive, a quicker transition between the drive and the movement down under the bar, and proper movement of the bar into position overhead, all of which will improve their split jerk.

It can be utilized instead of the power jerk for lifters who have difficulty properly timing their foot movement and hence cut off the upward drive early or move their feet incorrectly.


  • Timothy P. Carnes

    Timothy P. Carnes is a certified personal trainer with a Bachelor's degree in Exercise Science from the University of Florida. With over 8 years of experience in the fitness industry, Timothy is an expert in strength and conditioning, body composition, and overall health and wellness. He also holds certifications in strength and conditioning through the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and corrective exercise through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). As an author at FitGAG, he shares his knowledge and expertise on a variety of topics, including strength training, body composition, and overall health and wellness tips. Timothy believes that consistency and discipline are the keys to achieving fitness goals, and he strives to inspire his readers to prioritize their fitness and wellness journey. Through his articles, Timothy aims to empower his readers to take control of their health, enhance their performance, and live their best lives.

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