The 2012 London Olympics is coming and the sport of Olympic Weightlifting will surely thrill us bodybuilders. It is scheduled to be held from July 28 to August 7. Weightlifting was already a sport since ancient Greece. Weightlifting was included in the very first Olympic Games (1896). This sport is also called Olympic-Style Weightlifting.
To define, Olympic-Style Weightlifting involves two lifts, the Snatch and the Clean and Jerk.
The Snatch is the first one to be performed in the competition. It involves the lifter using a wide grip on the barbell and then as quickly and as gracefully as one can, the athlete will start the initial drive. It forces the bar upward one’s body while keeping the bar at the same angle similar to the person’s torso. When the barbell reaches the pelvic area, the athlete will extend their body creating enough force to propel the barbell upward. The athlete then lunges down to catch the weight and recovers. Finally, he stands up with the barbell. The Snatch takes only about 1 second to perform. This lift is even called “the fastest lift in the world.”
The Clean and Jerk is the second lift performed in the Olympic Weightlifting competition. It is considered the ultimate test for an athlete’s power and strength. This lift is divided into two lifts, the Clean and the Jerk.
The Clean is done by doing around a shoulder width grip on the barbell and then the athlete does a deadlift that reaches around the thighs and then the lifter would attempt to lift the barbell upwards. While the bar moves upward, the athlete lunges a bit downward and flips his wrists keeping his arms parallel to the floor. The bar will then be racked across the clavicles and shoulders and will create what could be considered a shelf for the bar. Then the person stands up with the barbell.
Immediately, the Jerk is performed after the Clean. The lifter makes a dip and then straightens his legs propelling the bar upward. The lifter should hold the barbell overhead with locked arms.
Each lifter is given three tries for each. If he fails to finish all attempts in the Snatch, he will not be permitted to do the Clean and Jerk. The combined total of the highest two successful lifts will determine the overall result within a bodyweight category.
The men’s division has 8 categories while the women’s has only 7. Here’s the list:
Benefits of Olympic Weightlifting
This discipline uses all the muscles in the body. It’s a full body workout! With that said, a weightlifting program would actually cut down your exercise time by at least one fourth! Not only that, it improves your power and strength plus it activates your stabilizer muscles. Olympic-Style Weightlifting is also proved to increase your bone mass density.
Is It Safe?
Common, are you a pussy to even ask that question? Any exercise is safe as long as you do the movement correctly. Always consult an expert when lifting weights so that usual injuries are kept at bay. But even with that fact, do a bit of research and you’ll even find out that this discipline is the safest form of resistance training.
Is It For Me?
If you are looking into improving your explosive power and strength this is for you. If you want to cut your time doing exercises this is definitely a plus factor. However, if you want cuts showing all over your body, this is not for you.
Well, that’s it for now. The 2012 London Olympics is almost there, we at TMD are excited to see which country will win the gold medal. Good luck to the athletes and good luck to our readers. We hope you would consider trying out this Olympic sport.