account My cart 0
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Building this Power House Exercise

This week we have another great DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training certification coming up in Southern California. That also means there has been a lot of chatter from attendees about what has quickly become one of the toughest and most meaningful physical standards. That is our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Clean and Press test. 

It has probably been one of the most controversial things we have ever done because it put accountability on students to be prepared to be real coaches. Yes, even if this means the only person they are coaching is themselves, the goal of fitness education should be to empower people to create better solutions. So, how does the DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Clean and Press play a role in all of this and how can you get SO much better at it? 


Most people would probably tend to believe we are just being a bit evil by setting such a standard. The truth is that we are doing it for them to demonstrate some of the best qualities of being a coach. That would be demonstrating technical proficiency in important movement patterns such as hip hinging, planking, overhead pushing and pulling. It tells a lot about your ability to program as in 4-6 weeks you should be able to pass the standard if you have been using our concepts to progress your training over time. Lastly, the standard helps us identify where our weaknesses lie. The goal then becomes in addressing them and this is what this post is really about! 

A lot of people try the Clean and Press test and go “screw it”, or “no way!” Now, I have to ask you, what type of test would it be if you walked in off of the street and killed it? It would probably be more of a waste of time than any useful measure of actual learning. On the other hand, it isn’t so hard that it should take you month after month to accomplish it. We have seen people in their 60’s, those whose fitness is not a career, those who were starting from almost zero, work their way to passing the standard. Moral of the story, it can be done with the right focus!

Of course part of the issue is just that, focus! We live in an age where fitness ADD is almost the norm and people have a hard time focusing long enough on a goal to achieve it. As with most things in life, the real success is not in the outcome, but in the process to achieve the outcome. You learn a lot about making mistakes, you grow a lot about pushing yourself, but also knowing what works and what doesn’t. The first challenge for many is to simply focus for that 4-6 weeks, can you do it?!

I like to believe focus is a choice and I’d like to believe most of you are going to make the RIGHT choice. Okay, so you are focused, now what? We can place emphasis on the more exciting part which is the actual training itself. That is another overlooked goal in setting up this standard. It wasn’t to have people just focus on the Clean and Press, but rather use DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training progressions and programming to get better at various aspects of the standard. 

There, I said it. Mistake number one is the fact that too many people just practice the Clean and Press test. While that may sound logical, that rarely works. In many cases it does the opposite in creating greater frustration and feeling of failure. What you will use to help your training has a lot to do with what your weaknesses are, but I am going to share with you some “go to’s” that will help with a large variety of training needs. 

Front Loaded Squats

One of the main reasons people struggle in the Clean and Press test is that they don’t know how or have a strong enough core to properly perform the test for the designated period of time (5 minutes). The DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training Front Loaded Squats are one of the best exercises to use to help because of the connection of the entire body with the core that this exercise creates. 


You have to have the right intent with this movement. Like what? You have to keep a tight upper body, you have to brace the core, you have to remember to use the feet. That also means you have to use some load, um, actually kinda heavy load. A good goal is to work up to 10 strong repetitions with half your body weight! That may not sound hard with traditional squats, but with Front Loaded Squats it will test your whole body in a brand new way!

Front Loaded Good Mornings

Front Loaded Good Mornings work in many similar ways to the squat with the major difference being teaching a hip hinge versus a squat. Why is this important? EVERY time we have people in our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training educational programs perform Front Loaded Good Mornings BEFORE Cleans, the Clean becomes almost easy! 

That is because the Front Loaded Good Morning teaches how to brace properly, use the muscles that usually people miss in their practice, and how to properly integrate the body from head to toe. Remember, our Clean and Press test is about efficiency, NOT brute force. 


Your goal should be able to Front Load Good Morning your Clean and Press weight for 10 good repetitions. 

Military Press

While the Clean and Press we allow (highly encourage in fact) that people Push Press the weight (use their legs), one’s training should use plenty of strict pressing. Why? Learning to strict press properly builds up the qualities that you will rely on to have maximum efficiency in your push press and also builds a super strong foundation to deal with fatigue. 


Far too many people get “loose” when they get tired and the reps get messier and messier. Instead, you should harken back upon the good training of strict pressing to understand where to create tension and strength from as you get tired and want to revert to bad habits. 

The Military Press helps teach one how to get tight, how to drive from the ground up, and how to stabilize the weight overhead. A simple looking drill that if you perform 5 sets of 5 of your Clean and Press weight will have you with a whole new respect with this movement. If this is not possible that means more time should be spent on Strict Pressing than just working Clean and Press. 


More than just seeing some exercises to use that you actually see how we are using the DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training system to create solutions. That is what we want you to take away from this great physical challenge than the test itself! Once you nail it, it is a sense of accomplishment like few other things can measure up to. 

Don’t miss some of our great DVRT Ultimate Sandbag educational programs coming to Southern California, Chicago, and the Northeast HERE