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Speed on the Olympic Lifts

CT,

Would you say your speed has taken a dip since your Olympic lifting days in your 20’s? If not, what do you think is best for maintaining or gaining speed for the Olympic lifts? How many Olympic lifting technique sessions do you average per week now? Also, did it take time to regain the flexibility that’s required?

[quote]bkbetz wrote:
CT,

Would you say your speed has taken a dip since your Olympic lifting days in your 20’s? If not, what do you think is best for maintaining or gaining speed for the Olympic lifts? How many Olympic lifting technique sessions do you average per week now? Also, did it take time to regain the flexibility that’s required? [/quote]

That’s not what I said… I said that explosion is the first thing that goes when you get older and that a 40 year old master lifter that I work with commmented that he lost speed compared to his earlier days.

Maybe I’m not old enough yet but my speed is better than it was… now I gotta regain my strength!

I do the two olympic lifts 6 days a week (not always heavy) with 3 sessions I would consider hard.

It took me about a month to regain all my flexibility the first time I got back to olympic lifting (last summer)… then I got my health issues that made me lose a decent amount of muscle. As a result I am more mobile now then when I competed (I can do a fairly decent squat jerk now).

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]bkbetz wrote:
CT,

Would you say your speed has taken a dip since your Olympic lifting days in your 20’s? If not, what do you think is best for maintaining or gaining speed for the Olympic lifts? How many Olympic lifting technique sessions do you average per week now? Also, did it take time to regain the flexibility that’s required? [/quote]

That’s not what I said… I said that explosion is the first thing that goes when you get older and that a 40 year old master lifter that I work with commmented that he lost speed compared to his earlier days.

Maybe I’m not old enough yet but my speed is better than it was… now I gotta regain my strength!

I do the two olympic lifts 6 days a week (not always heavy) with 3 sessions I would consider hard.

It took me about a month to regain all my flexibility the first time I got back to olympic lifting (last summer)… then I got my health issues that made me lose a decent amount of muscle. As a result I am more mobile now then when I competed (I can do a fairly decent squat jerk now).
[/quote]

CT, I would be interested in how you manage 6 days a week with your training? I’m a 40 yr old master lifter, and last time I tried 6 days a week, I got severely over-trained after a couple of months. What does your program look like??

[quote]olylifter106 wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]bkbetz wrote:
CT,

Would you say your speed has taken a dip since your Olympic lifting days in your 20’s? If not, what do you think is best for maintaining or gaining speed for the Olympic lifts? How many Olympic lifting technique sessions do you average per week now? Also, did it take time to regain the flexibility that’s required? [/quote]

That’s not what I said… I said that explosion is the first thing that goes when you get older and that a 40 year old master lifter that I work with commmented that he lost speed compared to his earlier days.

Maybe I’m not old enough yet but my speed is better than it was… now I gotta regain my strength!

I do the two olympic lifts 6 days a week (not always heavy) with 3 sessions I would consider hard.

It took me about a month to regain all my flexibility the first time I got back to olympic lifting (last summer)… then I got my health issues that made me lose a decent amount of muscle. As a result I am more mobile now then when I competed (I can do a fairly decent squat jerk now).
[/quote]

CT, I would be interested in how you manage 6 days a week with your training? I’m a 40 yr old master lifter, and last time I tried 6 days a week, I got severely over-trained after a couple of months. What does your program look like??
[/quote]

I always trained 6-7 days a week ever since I can remember (OL or not)… my body is used to it, it’s normal for me. If anything it’s harder for me to recover from 4 days a week than 6.

I tweaked it a bit recently, but essentially it looks like this:

DAYS 1 & 4 (MODERATE STRESS DAYS)
Power snatch + Snatch work up to about 85-90%
Clean + paused front squat (1+2) up to about 85-90%
Back squat 5 x 1-3*
Bench press 5 x 3-5*

*When I give a range (1-3 or 3-5) it means that my goal is to get all 5 sets of the highest number in the range with the same training weight. As long as I can’t complete all 5 sets with the same weight I keep the same weight for the next session. If I can reach the top of the range for all 5 sets I go up in weight for the next session.

DAY 2 & 5 (HIGH STRESS DAYS)
Power snatch 5 x 1-3*
Snatch pull from hang 5 x 3-5*
Snatch extension (low pull) 5 x 1-3*
Clean extension (low pull) 5 x 1-3*
Shrugs 5 x 3-5*

DAY 3 & 6 (LOW STRESS DAYS)
Power snatch + snatch working up to 80-85%
Jerk (I power jerk) working up to 90-95%
Push press 5 x 1-3*

On any given day if I feel good on the snatch, clean or jerk exercise of the day I might go heavier on that movement and go for a training max.

1 Like

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]olylifter106 wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]bkbetz wrote:
CT,

Would you say your speed has taken a dip since your Olympic lifting days in your 20’s? If not, what do you think is best for maintaining or gaining speed for the Olympic lifts? How many Olympic lifting technique sessions do you average per week now? Also, did it take time to regain the flexibility that’s required? [/quote]

That’s not what I said… I said that explosion is the first thing that goes when you get older and that a 40 year old master lifter that I work with commmented that he lost speed compared to his earlier days.

Maybe I’m not old enough yet but my speed is better than it was… now I gotta regain my strength!

I do the two olympic lifts 6 days a week (not always heavy) with 3 sessions I would consider hard.

It took me about a month to regain all my flexibility the first time I got back to olympic lifting (last summer)… then I got my health issues that made me lose a decent amount of muscle. As a result I am more mobile now then when I competed (I can do a fairly decent squat jerk now).
[/quote]

CT, I would be interested in how you manage 6 days a week with your training? I’m a 40 yr old master lifter, and last time I tried 6 days a week, I got severely over-trained after a couple of months. What does your program look like??
[/quote]

I always trained 6-7 days a week ever since I can remember (OL or not)… my body is used to it, it’s normal for me. If anything it’s harder for me to recover from 4 days a week than 6.

I tweaked it a bit recently, but essentially it looks like this:

DAYS 1 & 4 (MODERATE STRESS DAYS)
Power snatch + Snatch work up to about 85-90%
Clean + paused front squat (1+2) up to about 85-90%
Back squat 5 x 1-3*
Bench press 5 x 3-5*

*When I give a range (1-3 or 3-5) it means that my goal is to get all 5 sets of the highest number in the range with the same training weight. As long as I can’t complete all 5 sets with the same weight I keep the same weight for the next session. If I can reach the top of the range for all 5 sets I go up in weight for the next session.

DAY 2 & 5 (HIGH STRESS DAYS)
Power snatch 5 x 1-3*
Snatch pull from hang 5 x 3-5*
Snatch extension (low pull) 5 x 1-3*
Clean extension (low pull) 5 x 1-3*
Shrugs 5 x 3-5*

DAY 3 & 6 (LOW STRESS DAYS)
Power snatch + snatch working up to 80-85%
Jerk (I power jerk) working up to 90-95%
Push press 5 x 1-3*

On any given day if I feel good on the snatch, clean or jerk exercise of the day I might go heavier on that movement and go for a training max.

[/quote]

Would you say you do pulls primarily for strengthing the p-chain than for developing speed/technique?

I ask because as I understand the programming of pulls from Russian literature (from an article I ready on sportivny press by Bud Charniga) usually 80-100% clean/snatch weight for pulls was to develop speed but if you went above 100% that was for strength.

But supposedly spending to much pull volume in the strength range (100-120% of sn/cln max) would make your pull slower and, not sure if that was something the Russian sport scientist’s of the past found to be true or if it was just something they believed to be true. Although I think they did find that once you go above 90-100% sn/cln max on pulls it changes your pull from the way you would actually pull it if it were a real sn/cln…

I’ve always been on the fence with pulls since they don’t teach you to go under the bar (and that’s a problem spot for me) so it doesn’t address that issue - same thing with power versions of the lifts…

I also find it interesting that certain programs like Bulgarian (though I’m sure they used pulls before they were elite level) didn’t really pull, same with Broz’s guys, and I think Pendlay’s guys don’t program a whole lot of pulls either but stick to more lift variants, though I could be wrong

Lately I’ve been opting more for sn/cln dl’s.

Nice look at your program!

[quote]Howard Roark wrote:
Would you say you do pulls primarily for strengthing the p-chain than for developing speed/technique? [/quote]

To increase the strength of the muscles involved in maintaining the proper positions in the movement. Or specifically to have the back, lower back and glutes strength to be able to reach the optimal positions to be able to use the legs during the explosion of the pull.

A weak back wont allow you to use your legs properly or have a correct bar path and will thus reduce your chance of a successful lift with heavy weights (you will get out of position with heavy weights).

[quote]Howard Roark wrote:
I ask because as I understand the programming of pulls from Russian literature (from an article I ready on sportivny press by Bud Charniga) usually 80-100% clean/snatch weight for pulls was to develop speed but if you went above 100% that was for strength.

But supposedly spending to much pull volume in the strength range (100-120% of sn/cln max) would make your pull slower and, not sure if that was something the Russian sport scientist’s of the past found to be true or if it was just something they believed to be true. Although I think they did find that once you go above 90-100% sn/cln max on pulls it changes your pull from the way you would actually pull it if it were a real sn/cln…[/quote]

I guess Klokov, Polovnikov, Lovchev, Lapikov and the likes who all do clean pulls with over 300kg missed the memo.

And that’s probably why chinese lifters (who do tons and tons of very heavy pulls) are so slow (sarcasm).

[quote]Howard Roark wrote:
I’ve always been on the fence with pulls since they don’t teach you to go under the bar (and that’s a problem spot for me) so it doesn’t address that issue - same thing with power versions of the lifts…[/quote]

Squats don’t teach you to go under the bar either and they are much slower than the competitive lifts… I guess that we should drop them too.

Not everything has to be super specific. Yes you need to be fast and technically efficient… but you must have very strong back and leg muscles. Pulls and squats are general strength exercises. In both cases they shouldn’t be seen as technique-building exercises but as strength building ones.

[quote]Howard Roark wrote:
I also find it interesting that certain programs like Bulgarian (though I’m sure they used pulls before they were elite level) didn’t really pull, same with Broz’s guys, and I think Pendlay’s guys don’t program a whole lot of pulls either but stick to more lift variants, though I could be wrong

Lately I’ve been opting more for sn/cln dl’s.
[/quote]

Pendlay uses more pulls now. Especially in the early preparation period where his goal is to increase the general strength of his guys.

Bulgarians do 50-60% of their training volume in the form of squats. Broz’s variation uses mostly the back squat. The back squat will strengthen the back and the legs (the back less than pulls, but it will works it). If 50-60% of your training volume (keep in mind that if you are training 4 hours a day like Broz’s guys you are doing TONS of volume… 50-60% of that is also a very high workload) is spent on squats I guess you don’t need pulls as much since you are building ample strength in the legs.

But I’m personally built for squatting and not for pulling. So I need a lot more pulling work to build the general strength I need. Plus, pulls will give you a badass look.

Then again Klokov has more of a puller built than a squatter built (long limbs relative to torso) yet he emphasizes pulls much more than squats…

1 Like

As a simpler version of my previous post…

To be good at weightlifting you need to be:

  • Strong
  • Fast
  • Technically efficient

If you aren’t super strong, no amount of speed or technique will allow you to perform at a high level. Plus, if you aren’t strong enough you wont be able to maintain proper form on the competition lifts when you are using near max or max weights.

So just because an exercises isn’t 100% specific speed and movement pattern-wise, if it gets the muscles and positions involved in the competition lifts stronger, it will help you.

1 Like

Ha! You bring up good points!

Even though I knew about Klokov et al. & the Chinese doing super heavy pulls, I was letting the “Holy Russian Sports Science of the 70’s” blind me!

Thanks for the perspective!

[quote]Howard Roark wrote:
I was letting the “Holy Russian Sports Science of the 70’s” blind me!

Thanks for the perspective![/quote]

Which isn’t even followed by modern Russian coaches/lifters

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:
As a simpler version of my previous post…

To be good at weightlifting you need to be:

  • Strong
  • Fast
  • Technically efficient

If you aren’t super strong, no amount of speed or technique will allow you to perform at a high level. Plus, if you aren’t strong enough you wont be able to maintain proper form on the competition lifts when you are using near max or max weights.

So just because an exercises isn’t 100% specific speed and movement pattern-wise, if it gets the muscles and positions involved in the competition lifts stronger, it will help you.[/quote]
would you say that is the order of performance in the oly lifts?
in the throws, i have found it to be technique/speed, strength

you may have a point here.
an extremely strong individual can outperform a technically perfect weak individual in the shot put. not necessarily inthe javelin.
hmmmm, interesting from a coaching perspective

[quote]domcib wrote:
you may have a point here.
an extremely strong individual can outperform a technically perfect weak individual in the shot put. not necessarily inthe javelin.
hmmmm, interesting from a coaching perspective[/quote]

True… but the truly excellent lifters (probably applies to throwers too) are both technically efficient and super strong in the back and legs.

One thing that a lot of people fail to remember is that lack of strength can lead to technique breakdown with heavy weights. You can have superb technique and speed with submaximal weights, if you don’t have a good reserve of strength your technique will breakdown on maximal lifts a lot more than a stronger individual.

A superb technician with low strength reserves will look amazing with moderate weights.

An average technician with a lot of strength reserves wont look as good with moderate weights.

But in the above example, the stronger lifter will have a more stable technique: it will not change as much when the loads get heavy.

Also DO NOT quote examples of elite international olympic lifters who are “weak and great technician who don’t have any technique breakdown”… THERE ARE NO WEAK ELITE INTERNATIONAL LIFTERS. Yes some are much stronger than others… but they all have ample strength reserves.

[quote]domcib wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:
As a simpler version of my previous post…

To be good at weightlifting you need to be:

  • Strong
  • Fast
  • Technically efficient

If you aren’t super strong, no amount of speed or technique will allow you to perform at a high level. Plus, if you aren’t strong enough you wont be able to maintain proper form on the competition lifts when you are using near max or max weights.

So just because an exercises isn’t 100% specific speed and movement pattern-wise, if it gets the muscles and positions involved in the competition lifts stronger, it will help you.[/quote]
would you say that is the order of performance in the oly lifts?
in the throws, i have found it to be technique/speed, strength
[/quote]

No, I was just quoting the 3 important qualities. I would probably say technique/strength/speed in the clean; technique/speed/strength in the snatch and possibly speed/strength/technique in the jerk

1 Like

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]domcib wrote:
you may have a point here.
an extremely strong individual can outperform a technically perfect weak individual in the shot put. not necessarily inthe javelin.
hmmmm, interesting from a coaching perspective[/quote]

Also DO NOT quote examples of elite international olympic lifters who are “weak and great technician who don’t have any technique breakdown”… THERE ARE NO WEAK ELITE INTERNATIONAL LIFTERS. Yes some are much stronger than others… but they all have ample strength reserves.[/quote]

i’m not quoting anyone. I would not know where to find someone to quote, unless it was here on Tnation.
I brought up the question because during my ancient coaching career, I had tried to come up with “some formula”. I coached mostly on the high school and college level. with the beginners and inermediates, i found that some would prefer spending the least amount of time on technical work.
the one who asks me why he isnt throwing any farther although he is getting new maxes in his lifts. i tell him it’s because he leaves or doesnt come to throwing practice and instead he is in the weightroom every day.

Or how bout the kids that throw bombs on the high school level… 12 lbshot, then thdont really perform on the collegiate level… 16lb shot. With the 12, they can use their technique and speed to launch bombs. But with the 16, if they dont get that strength level up to par, they will be disapppointed.
In the end, i would imagine the reality is, to perform on any sort of higher level, you need all three.
heck, you can be fast as heck, but, how fast are you while carrying a 16 lb shot. In the end, it’s the velocity at point of release that counts.
Is’nt that some physics equation? distance = mass x velocity. or something like that.
I would imagine the oly lifts have similar properties like you have discussed in your post. tecnique, and speed can only go so far in and of themselves. There has to be a good amount of strength in order to produce a “technically efficient” movement at a fast enough velocity, in order to perform the movement.

Hey, here’s a oddball thought. The power of the three. Trinity, anima, animus, spiritus, Jung’s yin, yang, etc

[quote]domcib wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]domcib wrote:
you may have a point here.
an extremely strong individual can outperform a technically perfect weak individual in the shot put. not necessarily inthe javelin.
hmmmm, interesting from a coaching perspective[/quote]

Also DO NOT quote examples of elite international olympic lifters who are “weak and great technician who don’t have any technique breakdown”… THERE ARE NO WEAK ELITE INTERNATIONAL LIFTERS. Yes some are much stronger than others… but they all have ample strength reserves.[/quote]
i’m not quoting anyone. I would not know where to find someone to quote, unless it was here on Tnation.
I brought up the question because during my ancient coaching career, I had tried to come up with “some formula”. I coached mostly on the high school and college level. with the beginners and inermediates, i found that some would prefer spending the least amount of time on technical work.
the one who asks me why he isnt throwing any farther although he is getting new maxes in his lifts. i tell him it’s because he leaves or doesnt come to throwing practice and instead he is in the weightroom every day.
Or how bout the kids that throw bombs on the high school level… 12 lbshot, then thdont really perform on the collegiate level… 16lb shot. With the 12, they can use their technique and speed to launch bombs. But with the 16, if they dont get that strength level up to par, they will be disapppointed.
In the end, i would imagine the reality is, to perform on any sort of higher level, you need all three.
heck, you can be fast as heck, but, how fast are you while carrying a 16 lb shot. In the end, it’s the velocity at point of release that counts.
Is’nt that some physics equation? distance = mass x velocity. or something like that.
I would imagine the oly lifts have similar properties like you have discussed in your post. tecnique, and speed can only go so far in and of themselves. There has to be a good amount of strength in order to produce a “technically efficient” movement at a fast enough velocity, in order to perform the movement.
Hey, here’s a oddball thought. The power of the three. Trinity, anima, animus, spiritus, Jung’s yin, yang, etc[/quote]

Sorry, the cap section wasn’t aimed at you :slight_smile: It honestly was a general comment to prevent lurkers to this thread to say “yeah, but XYZ ain’t that strong and he finished 3rd in the world”

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]domcib wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]domcib wrote:
you may have a point here.
an extremely strong individual can outperform a technically perfect weak individual in the shot put. not necessarily inthe javelin.
hmmmm, interesting from a coaching perspective[/quote]

Also DO NOT quote examples of elite international olympic lifters who are “weak and great technician who don’t have any technique breakdown”… THERE ARE NO WEAK ELITE INTERNATIONAL LIFTERS. Yes some are much stronger than others… but they all have ample strength reserves.[/quote]
i’m not quoting anyone. I would not know where to find someone to quote, unless it was here on Tnation.
I brought up the question because during my ancient coaching career, I had tried to come up with “some formula”. I coached mostly on the high school and college level. with the beginners and inermediates, i found that some would prefer spending the least amount of time on technical work.
the one who asks me why he isnt throwing any farther although he is getting new maxes in his lifts. i tell him it’s because he leaves or doesnt come to throwing practice and instead he is in the weightroom every day.
Or how bout the kids that throw bombs on the high school level… 12 lbshot, then thdont really perform on the collegiate level… 16lb shot. With the 12, they can use their technique and speed to launch bombs. But with the 16, if they dont get that strength level up to par, they will be disapppointed.
In the end, i would imagine the reality is, to perform on any sort of higher level, you need all three.
heck, you can be fast as heck, but, how fast are you while carrying a 16 lb shot. In the end, it’s the velocity at point of release that counts.
Is’nt that some physics equation? distance = mass x velocity. or something like that.
I would imagine the oly lifts have similar properties like you have discussed in your post. tecnique, and speed can only go so far in and of themselves. There has to be a good amount of strength in order to produce a “technically efficient” movement at a fast enough velocity, in order to perform the movement.
Hey, here’s a oddball thought. The power of the three. Trinity, anima, animus, spiritus, Jung’s yin, yang, etc[/quote]

Sorry, the cap section wasn’t aimed at you :slight_smile: It honestly was a general comment to prevent lurkers to this thread to say “yeah, but XYZ ain’t that strong and he finished 3rd in the world”[/quote]

gotcha. i hear ya.

Thank you so much for your insight!!

I agree with you whole heartedly, and know that I need more strength than anything else at this point, both in pulls and squats. I’m changing my program today to focus on strength in the pulls, push press and squats, while still doing some lifting to keep the speed and positions there.

[quote]olylifter106 wrote:
Thank you so much for your insight!!

I agree with you whole heartedly, and know that I need more strength than anything else at this point, both in pulls and squats. I’m changing my program today to focus on strength in the pulls, push press and squats, while still doing some lifting to keep the speed and positions there.[/quote]

One happy medium that I like with pulls is what the chinese are doing: heavy from the floor, fast from the hang or blocks