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Jessica is our 2016 Olympic Hopeful and Sarah is our 2012 Olympian in Weightlifting. We're setting out to be "Pretty Strong" and we encourage you to do the same.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

Weightlifting: What is it? How can it help me?

Olympic weightlifting is the only barbell sport in the Olympics. Cool, huh?
It consists of two lifts: "Snatch" and "Clean and jerk."
Let's learn the basics!


Basics of Weightliftting:
Snatch-With a wide grip the lifter pulls the bar from the floor to over head in one movement.
Clean and Jerk- With a close grip the lifter pulls the bar from the floor to the shoulders in one movement, pauses, and throws the bar over their head while splitting their feet.

Here is a video of the lifts. The Snatch portion always begins first and the Clean and jerk follows after a 10 minute break.


  • Men compete in 8 weightclasses. Women Compete in 7.
  • Everything is measured in kgs. ( 1kg=2.2 lbs)
  • There are 6 attempts total. 3 in Snatch and 3 in Clean and jerk.
  • The highest weight lifted in each category is added together for the "total."
  • Who ever has the highest total wins.
  • Women's weightlifting has been an Olympic sport since 2000

How does weightlifting differ from other barbell sports?
  • Weightlifting is the Snatch and Clean and jerk. It uses speed, agility, flexibility, mental toughness, and strength to move the bar. The snatch takes less than one second to get from the floor to overhead. In the U.S.A. it is strictly drug tested and internationally all of the medalists are drug tested. Not only is it a sport, it's a tool for exercise and athletic development
  • Power lifting consists of the bench press, dead lift, ad backsquat. It has many governing bodies in the U.S.A. so there are different types of competitions held. There are competitions where special rubber suits and shirts are permitted, or "Raw" competitions where nothing more than belts, wrist wraps, or knee wraps are allowed. They have drugged competitions and clean competitions.
  • Body Building is considered a sport by some (me, not so much) that uses free weights to make you look good. It focuses on poses, symmetry, and muscle size. There are seperate drug and clean events.


Weightlifting can help you! Yes, you.
I think of weightlifting as a "cure-all." It has so many benefits for the recreational exerciser to the elite athlete.
  • Increased bone density (women are susceptible to osteoperosis, to off set this, increase your bone density.)
  • Increased flexibility (shoulder, hips, knees, and ankles)
  • Increased speed
  • Increased coordination
  • Increased explosive power
  • Increased verticle jump
  • Higher muscle density
  • Increased Confidence
  • Injury prevention
  • Sport specific
  • Total body workout (lifts use over 90% of the muscles in the entire body)
  • Increased muscular strangth and endurance
  • It's great for everyone! Men and women! Youth 17 and under. Juniors 17-20, seniors 21-30, and masters 30+. For people who weigh less than 48 kgs to over 105 kgs! All abilities welcome.
  • It's fun and challenging 




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