Hang Clean with Barbell

Hang Clean with Barbell

The hang clean is a compound weightlifting exercise that primarily targets the muscles in your lower body, upper back, and shoulders. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to perform the hang clean with a barbell:

Video Instructions on How to Do a Hang Clean with Barbell

Equipment Needed:

  • Barbell
  • Weight plates
  • Weightlifting shoes (optional)
  • Chalk (optional)

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  1. Set Up:
    • Begin by loading the appropriate weight onto the barbell. Start with a lighter weight until you are comfortable with the movement.
    • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes pointing forward, and the barbell in front of you on the floor.
  2. Grip:
    • Bend at your hips and knees to lower your body, keeping your back straight. Grasp the barbell with a grip slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Your palms should be facing you (pronated grip).
  3. Starting Position (Hang):
    • Lift the barbell off the ground, keeping your arms fully extended. This is your starting position.
    • Your back should be straight, and your shoulders should be directly above or slightly in front of the barbell.
  4. First Pull:
    • Initiate the lift by driving through your heels, straightening your hips and knees simultaneously. Keep the bar close to your body as you lift.
  5. Transition to Second Pull:
    • As the barbell passes your knees, explode through your hips and pull your elbows up and back, raising the barbell. Your torso should remain upright, and your weight should shift from your heels to the balls of your feet.
  6. Catch (Rack Position):
    • As the bar reaches its peak height, quickly drop into a quarter-squat position. Simultaneously, rotate your elbows around and underneath the bar, catching it at shoulder height.
    • Your elbows should be pointed forward, and your upper arms parallel to the ground. This is known as the “rack position.”
  7. Stand Up:
    • Stand up from the squat position, fully extending your hips and knees. Keep the bar close to your body throughout this phase.
  8. Lowering the Bar:
    • Lower the barbell back to the starting position in a controlled manner, reversing the movements you used to lift it.


  • Focus on explosive hip and leg drive during the lift.
  • Keep the bar close to your body throughout the movement to maximize efficiency and power.
  • Practice the movement with light weights initially to perfect your form.
  • Engage your core to maintain stability during the lift.
  • Warm up properly before attempting heavy lifts.

Safety Considerations:

  • Ensure you have proper form before adding significant weight.
  • If you’re new to weightlifting, consider working with a coach or experienced lifter to learn the proper technique.
  • Listen to your body, and if you experience pain (other than typical muscle fatigue), stop and reassess your form or seek guidance.

Always consult with a fitness professional or healthcare provider before starting a new exercise routine, especially if you have any pre-existing health conditions or concerns.