Training guidelines for athletes in Olympic Weightlifting
As a coach, I have learned that training consistency is a key factor in performance improvement. If athletes are frequently injured, consistency flies out the window. Therefore, I strive to prevent athletes from over-stepping the safety line and damaging themselves. So I recently wrote the following training guidelines.
To the athlete:
- Injury prevention overrides the importance of any training program target, intensity or volume.
- Your focus on achieving excellence of technique should never subside and never be set aside.
- Focus on good training (PDF download) rather than be fixated about achieving personal bests.
- Do not think that any written program is a formula for success. A program is simply a guideline for how to approach training sensibly.
- Never inflate personal bests to raise training targets. If you do, then straightaway you are risking failure, overtraining, injury, and disappointment.
- If, for any exercise, you achieve the target percentage without loss, then by all means add an extra set with 1-2kg more. If this extra set is also achieved without fault, you can if you wish add a further set with another 1kg more . Additional sets after this should not be performed unless sanctioned by a coach who is witnessing your training.
- If, for any exercise, you are struggling to achieve the target percentage, drop back to an intensity you can manage and finish the programed sets.
- If, during an exercise, you feel you might have an injury – STOP. Avoid loading the possibly injured part of your body further in this session. If tomorrow the injury is non-existent, you have only lost a part of one session. However, if the injury is real, by stopping the day before you did the right thing.
- Dont go to training with preconceived ideas of what you can achieve. You are setting yourself up for failure.
- Act with patience and maturity in training. Improvement is a long haul task. Athletes of all ages often think “I don’t have much time” . However, if you act with immaturity you will be on the sideline wasting even more time.
- Consistent quality training is your best strategy, egotistical wants is your worst enemy.