Friday, May 16, 2008

A Complete How-to: Bailing

Ahhh, summer. The warm weather, the long days, the balmy mornings! With the nice weather upon us, attendance has been great! It is fantastic to see so many of you out busting-ass tirelessly, but with the crowd comes an increased demand for spacial-awareness during workouts.

Let's talk bailing out. Specifically from dynamic, overhead lifts. Now we're never squeamish about letting-rip from a missed lift or a potentially bad mechanic, but those two situations are really the only times when an all-out, kitchen-sink bail is necessary.

Bailing is there as an option to keep you SAFE! Safety is always paramount, but alas, most bails are done not out of self-preservation, but out of lazy-ness. We understand that you just held back coughing up a lung for that final push-press, but unless injury looms, control that descent, then rack your weights nicely! Not only is this easier on the equipment, but it eliminates the chances of your errant dumbell/barbell from rolling over into somebody else's personal-space, thereby eliminating the one thing (safety) that bailing promotes.

Think before you bail!

Let's take a look at the bail-out glossary. This glossary purposely omits the "I'm-gonna-Die" injury prevention bail (which is simply get the hell out of the way) because it typically does not need to be taught:

The "Standard", or "I-think-I-need-a-breath-or-two-to-continue"

Key points: Controlled, non-ballistic descent. Barbell is stopped on ground, not rolling towards your partner. Unless you are about to hurt yourself, 99% of all lifts should end like this in a met-con situation.

If you are working from a rack, substitute the barbell in the rack for the ground position. If working with dumbells, nothing really changes.

Grade: A+

The "Turn and Burn"

Key Points: Lifter is not in control. Often accompanied by running in a workout. Lifter does not even see barbell/dumbell hit the ground (or other person/rack/child etc). Bad things happen in group classes with this bail. Don't be that guy/girl/dick. One word describes this bail. Capital L azy-ness!


The "Max Effort"

Key Points: Space is created between object lifted and lifers vital structures (head/face/brain etc). Done after a successful max Clean and Jerk, Snatch or other O-lift where the load is not safe to lower slowly. Also applies for certain o-lift oriented met-cons. Grace comes to mind. Actually improves time, as you are not chasing you bar around after multiple bounces. Lifter follows bar to the ground (watch for the re-bounce) and is sure the bar does not roll-off into the blue.

Grade: A

The "Skin the Cat" or "Nose-Job"

Key Points: Although not as evident in the pictures, this bail happens at full speed. Note the close proximity of bar-to-face. Unless you are really pulling for some emergency surgery, this is not a good option. Get some space between your body and the bar!

Grade: F

Special Bonus: "Too-Damn-Heavy", back squat edition.

Key points: Drop arms straight down by sides. Step/jump forward. Make sure you communicate with your spotter/people spectating and let your intentions be known, should the lift go sour, BEFORE starting. Ideally, you are never working ridiculously outside of your comfort-zone, even when attempting a PR and a spotter can help you grind-it-out. This is really a last ditch maneuver when flying solo, or there are no experienced spotters around (inexperienced spotters can be as dangerous as not knowing how to bail).

There you have it. Control is good. Dental work costs a lot of money (ask Aneel) and it's especially pricey if you're paying for someone else's. Stay safe, if you know what I mean.

See you at 6, -Boz


The New Record Board is up! Only witnessed attempts at SFCF are counted and must be performed AS WRITTEN and scribed in by one of the coaches!

Once again, the board is for the top 5 male/female AS WRITTEN scores...your own slot on the other board is for any modifications etc. until you can get to the big board. The caveat is the new "Monthly PR" section. Any PR you have can be written in max set of 5 on the turkish Get-up...added 10lbs to the bar on my last Fran attempt...any and all will be highlighted for the month, then wiped clean to prepare for the next months highlights. Get after it!


Open Gym on Saturdays has been well attended lately! This is great! It will continue to be a free service to our monthly members, however standard drop-in fees will now apply to daily/non-monthly trainees. Spread the word!


Olivia de Santis said...

This is a completely epic entry!

Balmy mornings is right - it was 88 in my house at 10am. Luckily it was also 88 at the beach yesterday... ahh the joys of self employment.

So, what happens at Saturday open gym anyway?

Adrian said...

Well, that is up to you. Usually it's a big block (230-430) of time on Saturday afternoon that you can come and work on technique/movment, pick up a workout you missed during the week, set a PR etc. It's pretty unstructured (no set agenda, so come with your own), but all are welcome.


Wilson said...

Great post Adrian. I dont think coaches talk about this enough.

Anonymous said...

Brilliant Boz. I was totally sloppy on Thursday and felt it. Terrible. Thanks for the wake up call and thanks for not bustin' out your can of whoop-ass on us...if you know what I mean. -Molly