The Effect of Two Jerk Techniques on Barbell Kinematics

Document Type


Publication Date



The split jerk and power jerk are two commonly used lifts among strength and conditioning coaches, as well as lifts included in the sport of Olympic weightlifting. However, it is unknown which of these jerk techniques exhibit more advantageous barbell kinematics. PURPOSE: To compare the barbell kinematics between a power jerk and a split jerk at a constant load. METHODS: Twelve men were recruited for this study (height = 1.8 ± 0.1 m; mass = 85.3 ± 10.2 kg; age = 23.4 ± 2.4 years). All subjects had been completing the jerk for a minimum of six months, and reported their split jerk 1 repetition maximum (1-RM: 105.3 ± 19.1 kg). Subjects completed 3 repetitions of each jerk technique, at 85% of their split jerk 1-RM. The data were collected using 6 3D video cameras, with a sampling rate of 200Hz and were analyzed using Vicon software. A multivariate paired t-test was used to determine the effect of jerk technique on all kinematic variables. Paired samples t-tests were used as post hoc analyses when necessary. An alpha level of (p<0.05) was used for all inferential statistics. RESULTS: No significant differences were found between the two techniques for starting barbell position, lowest barbell position and maximum concentric velocity. Peak barbell height, range and displacement were all found to be significantly greater in the power jerk when compared to the split jerk (p<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Results suggest that more work is done on the barbell, and greater range of motion, occur during the power jerk. The results suggest that more work may be done on the body during the split jerk due to the technique of dropping quickly under the bar for the catch. Less work done on the barbell could result in higher absolute loads, making the split jerk the superior technique for populations such as weightlifting athletes.


Chattanooga, TN

This document is currently not available here.