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Learning the Olympic Lifts


I am a college student at West Virginia University and I am gaining a little interest in learning the olympic lifts. No one that goes to the gym does squats to parallel so I dont think anyone there can help me. Does anyone have any suggestions of online descriptions or any tips to give me to best learn the lifts by myself?








And for fun, a sweet clip of Pyrros Dimas moving some insane weight:



Get "The Weightlifting Encyclopedia" by Artie Dreschler. Simply the best book on the subject.

There's tons of video clips of champion lifters winning their medals around the internet, too, for visual reinforcement. Run a few google searches and you'll have more than you could ever need. Pay special attention to their setup at the beginning of the lifts and at what point they initiate movements (at what point do they start the second pull, how high is the bar when they drop under, that sort of thing.)

Also check out the late great J.V. Askem's website at


Lots of quality information from an amazing coach (you may notice he's the one who got WSM finalist Jesse Marunde into serious training).

The lifts are pretty technical - don't get frustrated if it takes a while to master them if you don't have a coach. Feel free to ask any specific questions when they come up, too - I or some of the other OL techie geeks will probably be able to help.

Good readin'



OneEye - Yeah that Dimas vid is great. I usually watch it before I lift for motivation.

My advice - be patient. It'll take time to gainthe flexibility and coordination. The lifts are fun as hell so it'll be worth it.


I learnt everything i know about olympic lifting from Dan Johns website, its a great resourse to use. I recommend reading his free ebook 'from the ground up' it really helps with learning the olympic lifts. I've been working them slowly for the last 2 months, last week i pulled my first bodyweight clean and jerk which was pretty cool. Good luck.


Lets just say that the dimas video is very humbling LOL. I thought my bodyweight clean and jerk was pretty good then i see dimas in that video power cleaning with ease a weight i struggle to deadlift LOL!


Buy the book Starting Strength. His first 65 pages are all about the SQUAT.


Also look into USAW's Club or Sport Performance Coach cert class. A lot of good "hands-on" experience.