If you're really looking to improve your athletic performance, you should be doing Olympic lift exercises.
There are many reasons why athletes should incorporate the Olympic lifts – or their variations – into a training program. Besides being fun, the lifts can have a dramatic effect on your overall performance. Not convinced? Here’s why YOU should be doing the lifts:
Rate of force development
Rate of force development is a key component of any program, once the basics of a strength training program have been mastered. Zatsiorsky calls this “explosive upper body and explosive lower body strength – the ability to exert maximal forces in minimal time”. If we think about many sporting activities, it is explosive strength that is critical for a player to have success in any given activity. It is one thing to be strong, but time is a critical component of sports. There is a minimal relationship between strength and the ability to display it quickly!
Train using speeds and forces relevant to sports
Training exercises at high speeds is important. Why? Because YOU, the athlete, will be forced to perform at high speeds during a practice or game. The Olympic lifts require speed – if you can’t move the barbell fast enough, you won’t be able to complete the lift. You will become used to applying force – and receiving it – which will benefit your body in ways that no weight training machine can hope to replicate!
Improved power output
Obviously, increased power is something we would all like to have. The Olympic lifts teach an athlete how to be more “explosive”. You will be activating a maximum amount of muscle units in a minimum amount of time. In other words, you learn how to drive your feet “hard & fast” into the ground – and increase your jumping ability!
Other references to consider
There are many other benefits to Olympic weightlifting. Explore some of the resources below to find out more:
The Weightlifting Encyclopedia, by Arthur Drechsler
Science and Practice of Strength Training, by Vladimir Zatsiorsky
Supertraining, by Mel Siff
Fundamentals of Special Strength Training in Sport, by Yuri Verkhoshansky
And 1R, to ensure you're recovering properly from your lifts, we at OneResult recommend the following supplements to be included in your healthy diet: