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Sample Dumbbell Exercises: Split Alternating-Feet One-Arm Jerk

This is an excerpt from Dumbbell Training by Allen Hedrick.


Split Alternating-Feet One-Arm Jerk | Instructions

  1. 1. Stand with the feet about shoulder-width apart and rest a dumbbell on the right shoulder.
  2. 2. Sit back until you are at the depth of a vertical-jump attempt. Keep the heels on the floor.
  3. 3. At the bottom of the jump action, quickly rise and transfer the momentum by pushing against the ground through the lower body and core to the upper body.
  4. 4. The force generated in the lower body should cause the dumbbell to quickly lift off of the shoulder.
  5. 5. When the hips are fully extended, quickly split the feet, with the left foot moving forward and the right foot moving back so you catch the dumbbells in what could be called a high lunge position.
  6. 6. While splitting under the dumbbell continue to press it until the elbow is fully extended and locked. The arm mainly steers the dumbbell to the correct position. Very little pressing action should be involved.
  7. 7. Pause in this position for a second, recover the feet to the start position by stepping up with the left foot and back with the right foot to bring them together, and then lower the dumbbell to the starting position.
  8. 8. Alternate the split position with each repetition while completing the full number of repetitions on the right arm.
  9. 9. Once you have completed the repetition on the right arm, switch the dumbbell to the left hand.

Common Errors

  • Placing the feet either wider or narrower than shoulder width.
  • Initiating the movement by flexing the knees forward rather than flexing the hips back.
  • Pausing at the bottom of the jump position instead of changing direction as quickly as possible.
  • Using the arm to press the dumbbell off the shoulder instead of to steer the dumbbell to the correct catch position.
  • Lowering the dumbbell before the feet are fully recovered to the start position.
  • Lifting the arm on the same side as the forward leg.

Note: All of the following dumbbell clean and dumbbell snatch exercises can be performed from both a hang position as well as performing the full movement. The full movements are performed with a start position holding the dumbbells at approximately mid-shin height, or replicating the position achieved when performing the movement with a barbell and full-sized weight plates positioned on the bar. Otherwise, the movement from the hang position and from mid-shin are both very similar.

Because the mid-shin start position involves a greater range of motion in which to perform the exercise, typically more weight can be used from this lower start position. However, the hang start position typically is easier to learn than the full movement, so the recommendation is to learn the movement using the hang position and then, once that movement has been perfected, move to the mid-shin start position.


Read more from Dumbbell Training by Allen Hedrick.



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Personal Exercise and Fitness
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Dumbbell Training
Former U.S. Olympic strength and conditioning coach Allen Hedrick offers a comprehensive guide to training with dumbbells for strength and conditioning enthusiasts and athletes.
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