Teaching Weightlifting Skill: 10 Objectives

In the view of the author, the following 10 objectives are critically important in teaching weightlifting skill to beginners. The initial learning of the beginner in their first 10-20 training sessions will have a very significant impact on their long-term technical competency, confidence  and ability to perform under pressure.

Coaches should teach the beginner athlete to:

Objective #1: Lockout and stabilise the bar above the head

Athletes have differing levels of ability to achieve ideal receiving positions due to flexibility limitations. However, it should always be a coaching objective to teach the athlete, from the very first moment of learning, to be able to hold bars motionless above the head and remain in balance. Successful achievement of this objective has long-term implications for the confidence and safety of the athlete in performing limit or near limit weights.

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Coaching the youth beginner athlete

Coaches must be aware that the initial learning period of the beginner in Weightlifting is profoundly important and will leave an indelible impression. In the case of coaching children and/or young adults, there is an increased level of responsibility to ensure that the coaching methodology employed lives up to community expectations and provides the beginner with a good start to their career in the sport.

The following guidelines are provided to assist coaches working with children and young adults in Weightlifting:

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Determining platform attempts in a Weightlifting competition

In the final days/weeks before a competition, athletes and coaches will generally discuss and make decisions about the athlete’s “competition plan”. This process can be quite simple or very elaborate depending on the importance of the competition, the level of experience of the athlete, and whether there is any need for tactics to respond to the athlete’s competitors. Continue reading

A coach’s plea

To my athletes, I would like to take a moment of your time to explain how I might see things differently about training, your training.

Last night was a designated ‘heavy’ session. I know that you very much look forward to such sessions in the hope that you can push beyond your present personal bests. Last night, many of you were rewarded for your efforts. Well done!

But as we head towards the next competition, there are some things I want you to keep uppermost in your mind. Continue reading

Talent Identification In Weightlifting

Nature versus Nurture in Weightlifting

It is accepted theory in Weightlifting that genetics plays a substantial role in the ultimate performance of the individual (12, 33).  A typical belief is that Weightlifters of the highest performance levels have a greater ratio of fast-twitch to slow-twitch fibres (29). Similarly, a common opinion in the Weightlifting community is that certain anthropometric characteristics strongly influence success such as shoulder circumference (38) and shorter height and limb lengths (34). Furthermore, many researchers have found that Weightlifters as a group are amongst the most mesomorphic of all athletes (25).

How does Weightlifting sit in the nature v nurture paradigm
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List of Articles for Coaching Olympic Weightlifting

There are currently 61 in-depth articles current available on this website for coaches and athletes in the sport of Olympic Weightlifting.

Coaching competency in Weightlifting
Self-care for better training in Weightlifting
Auto-regulation in Weightlifting Training
I need to know your mind
A coach’s plea
Training principles
Coaching the youth beginner athlete
Determining platform attempts in a Weightlifting competition
Writing training programs
Teaching Weightlifting skill: 10 objectives
I want you to be a great athlete
The causes of burnout in athletes
Continuous Improvement in the training of the athlete
Fundamental change in Weightlifting
Talent identification
 5 decisions for high performance in sport
 The path to high performance (part 1)
 The path to high performance (part 2)
 The path to high performance (part 3)
The affects of Weightlifting on the cardiovascular system
Homeostasis and adaptation
Neural adaptation
Muscle fibre types
Muscle anabolism
Concurrent strength and endurance training
Muscle co-activation and strength
Proprioception in Weightlifting
Energy expenditure and energy efficiency
Weight loss and making weight
Mental skills in Weightlifting
Dealing with anxiety in Weightlifting
I want you to be a great athlete
The hardest step
The inner journey
The mindset of the Weightlifter
A proposal for a club development program
Training the jerk
Snatch technique – key concepts explained
Learning the technique of the jerk – key objectives
Understanding the pull trajectory
Qualitative analysis of the snatch
Key issues in the jerk explained
The dip phase of the jerk
The jerk balance
The split squat
Rehabilitation and recovery of Weightlifting injuries
The meaning of push
 Conversations with athletes
 The 21-day training cycle
 Exercises for improving the snatch
 A comparison of different training scenarios on rate of improvement
 Developing leg strength for Weightlifting
 Gold standards in Weightlifting
 The rest interval between sets
 Training intensity for pulls
 Do you train hard?
Training Intensity Percentages as Used in Weightlifting

Writing Weightlifting Programs – 5 Principles to Improve Results

Experienced Weightlifting coaches know the value of writing training programs for athletes. Yes, there are many limitations with a written program but if you want success as a coach, it is inevitable that you will spend many hours writing weightlifting programs. The task becomes particularly important when you have multiple athletes to look after, otherwise you will be faced with a constant stream of questions and you will find yourself making decisions on the spot that sometimes may be unwise. Therefore coaches need to demonstrate to their athletes that they have capability in the task of writing weightlifting programs.

Here are 5 principles to bear in mind when writing weightlifting programs:

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The Weightlifting Bandwagon

Leo Isaac, Olympian, Weightlifting CoachIt seems to me, as a practitioner of 40 years, that there has never been a time in the history of Olympic Weightlifting when the sport was as popular as it is now. It’s hard to estimate the participation growth but a figure of 10 times more people engaging in the sport than 40 years ago is probably very conservative.

In not only the capital cities of Australia but also in regional cities and towns, it is probable that you could find somewhere to pursue training in Olympic Weightlifting. For many Fitness centres, the inclusion of classes in which customers learn to Snatch and Clean & Jerk has become a standard element of the business model. It’s an amazing sight to see significant amounts of floor space covered wall-to-wall with people performing Power Snatches or Power Cleans, or Overhead Squats, or some kind of strange looking Jerk. Continue reading

Training Principles

It is no easy thing to make progress towards higher levels of ability as an athlete in the sport of Weightlifting. The level of commitment to training is uncomfortably high and beyond the contemplation of most individuals who enter the sport. For the average athlete who lifts weights 3-4 sessions per week and who reach intermediate performance goals, the next step in the improvement process often involves not only increasing the training commitment to 5 sessions per week but also a quantum leap in understanding how to training effectively. The following article provides some advice on how to take this quantum leap.

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Olympic Weightlifting Coaching Services

High performance Olympic Weightlifting coaching services

Achieving high performance in the sport of Olympic Weightlifting requires not only a high level of motivation but also a number of important factors to be in place including (i) The opportunity to work with an experienced coach (ii) A training environment that supports the athlete (iii) A sensible training program which enables consistent quality work but avoids injury (iv) An understanding of the need for recovery between training sessions and maximising athlete well being and (v) Opportunities to compete at successively higher levels. In short athletes in the sport of Weightlifting need to avail themselves of expert Weightlifting coaching services, information and learning so that they can meet the challenges that they will undoubtedly face. The following services are provided to assist athletes attain high performance in Weightlifting:

  • Personal Coaching by Leo Isaac
  • Training Programs and Plans
  • Intensive Training Camps and Workshops
  • Video Analysis

Individual and Small Group Coaching

Personal weightlifting coaching by Leo Isaac is available if you live or wish to travel to Hobart, Tasmania. The venue for coaching is the Weightlifting Academy of Tasmania, 110 Mornington Rd Mornington Tasmania, in conjunction with Align Fitness.

Personal coaching by Leo Isaac affords the opportunity to receive not only expert guidance on learning or improving your Olympic Weightlifting technique but also advice on programs, training methodology and performance psychology.

The rates for a one-off personal Weightlifting coaching session are as follows:

  • One-on-one coaching – $60 per hour
  • Group of 2 persons – $90 per hour ($45 each)
  • Group of 4 persons – $120 per hour ($30 each)

For a course of 5 one hour coaching sessions, the rates are as follows:

  • Single person (5 sessions course) – $250 ($50 per one-hour session)
  • Group of two (5 session course) – $350 ($35 per person per hour)
  • Group of 4 persons (5 session course)  – $500 ($25 per person per hour)

For inquiries please email: leo@trainingweightlifting.com

Intensive Training Camps

Leo Isaac runs intensive training camps of 5 days duration at the Weightlifting Academy of Tasmania, Hobart. Intensive training camps include:

  • 2 training sessions per day of 90 minutes duration
  • A 1-hour lecture on topics such as injury prevention and management, performance psychology, concepts of weightlifting technique, nutrition, movement analysis and more
  • A 1-hour discussion group in which participants put questions on any matter related to training

Video Analysis of Lifts

Send a video file of yourself performing a snatch or a clean & jerk by email and receive an edited version back with illustrated feedback. Your video will be analysed in slow motion and detailed explanation and expert recommendations given on technical issues identified. Satisfaction is guaranteed or your money back.
Service Fee: $20 per lift analysed
Email: leo@trainingweightlifting.com

Workshops at your gym!

Leo is always happy to provide workshops tailored to meet the needs of Olympic Weightlifting clubs, Crossfit boxes, Institutes of Sport, Academic Institutes and other community sport groups anywhere in Australia. Typically workshops are 3 – 6 hours in duration and provide hands-on tuition to 20 or so participants. You can choose the topic, the duration and the destination. Happy to travel!

The fee for workshops depends on air travel and accommodation costs. Please inquire –
Email: leo@trainingweightlifting.com

Training Programs

This website provides Weightlifting training programs from beginners to advanced. These programs have been used by athletes of the Olympic Weightlifting Academy of Tasmania including national champions.

Go to: Training Programs