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Muscle-Building Workouts for O-Lifters?

I’ve been lifting seriously for about 3 years now, mostly using various bodybuilding type programs, and have just started to focus on Oly Weightlifting training. I train with a coach 3 days a week, M/W/F, and my workouts usually consist of Snatch or C+J, pulls, and squats.

I was wondering if anyone had suggestions on extra work I could do to add upper-body muscle. I read Thibs suggests doing 15 mins of “beach work” after each workout, but wanted to see if anyone had ideas for extra workouts to do, maybe Tues and Sat. Thanks.

I have only been doing the Olifts for about 6 months so i am not the most knowledgeable but my coach has told me this.

If you want to focus on the the olifts then go MWF and do them. On the other days do the olifts with just the bar. You really have to get those movement patterns ingrained in your head. If you try to work chest and back like i have of the other days your shoulders will take a beating and you won’t be flexable. It has held me back thus far had i have stopped.

Snatch and C&J take years to become really proficient. If this is the road you want to take then do it 100%.

Good Luck

Good advice above.

If your new to O-lifts, your upper body is gonna grow. BB workouts are so different. Snatches, jerks, push presses, ect, are gonna make your upper body explode if your eating enough.

Maybe just throw in an assistance day, or during your warm-ups work some pushups and BW rows.

O-lifts can make you grow big, but you gotta find the right intensity/volume for growth.

Apart from your traps, snatches and C&J won’t do that much for upper body hypertrophy. Your triceps and shoulders are used primarily for supporting strength - there is no real weighted pressing action in a snatch or C&J, it’s mostly leg drive and then your arms are used to drive the body under the bar, not drive the bar above the head. Your chest is doing virtually nothing. You will hit the upper back hard during the pull, but you’re only loading it for less than a second. You’re also using very low reps - singles, doubles and triples aren’t the best rep range for hypertrophy.

If you look at the beefier O lifters (guys like Klokov, Chigishev, Guozheng) they’re usually the guys from countries that do a lot of additional assistance work. If you look at the guys from the golden age of Bulgarian lifting, when they were pretty much doing just snatches, C&J and front squats, none of them have very big upper bodies.

My advice would be to do some extra stuff at the end of your sessions - hammer curls (pretty much the only curl worth doing for an O lifter), pullups/chins, dumbell rows (you need a strong upper back to really hammer those front squats), and maybe some dumbell benching if you can stay flexible enough to hit the bottom position in a snatch properly. Add some ab work like ab pulldowns and planks, and maybe some general shoulder/elbow health work like scarecrows and band pushdowns and you’re good to go. Spit it up over the course of the week.