Power Cleans Vs Box Squats For Explosive Football PowerOn March 26, 2017 by abah guru
Funny how the football training pendulum swings.
A decade ago, only the top College Football schools used the Olympic lifts in their programs. Then, if filtered down to the point where just about every high school football player in the country was at least doing Power Cleans. However, over the last few years there's been a backlash against using the Olympic Lifts in football weight training programs.
The biggest argument for not using the Olympic lifts comes from the Powerlifting world where Box Squatting is king. It is said that Box Squats actually produce more explosiveness than Cleans.
Once and For All, What's More Explosive – A Power Clean or a Dynamic Box Squat?
A Power Clean starts on the floor, where the bar is picked up in a controlled manor, once the bar passes the knees, the athlete explodes the bar up and catches it in a 1/4 Squat.
In a Dynamic Box Squat (using chains or bands) the athlete un-racks the bar, sets back (pre stretching the hams and glutes), descends while getting pulled down by the force of the bands, sets and relaxes some muscles while keeping others Tense, then has to activate all of those muscle fibers at once to explode the weight up.
From the description alone you should see which is better for football training!
Remember, we are after explosive football training here, the goal is not just to be strong but strong and fast.
Even when doing speed training for football, we are concerned with explosioniveness rather than just straight-ahead speed. We need to build the muscles to be able to cut quickly or to deliver a shot that will knock the fool out.
However, this does not mean that Power Cleans should not be done!
They will still build explosion, but from a different path. They are hugely helpful in bulking the upper back and traps as well.
For the hip-explosioniveness gained from Power Cleans alone the effort to learn at least basic form is well worth it. Use them as an alternative Speed exercise or use them as your heavy leg movement. Keep the reps low, the sets high and get the bar moving as fast as possible!
So, should you use Box Squats or Power Cleans for Explosive Football Gains?
Actually, you should use both.
Box Front and Back Squats should be the foundation of your heavy leg training and Power Cleans should be used in certain periods to build your hip explosion and add mass to your traps and back.
If you choose to use Power Cleans, go with multiple sets of low reps, ie, 6 – 8 sets x 2 – 3 reps.
You can also use Power Cleans right after Box Squats. But, you'll need to use a bit less weight on the cleans and concentrate on explosiveness.