In Olympic Lifts, Powerlifting

October 06, 2014

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If your pre-workout prep consists of a cup of coffee and a few squats, Bill Starr has some advice for you.

As every Olympic lifter fully understands, doing full snatches and clean and jerks requires a high degree of flexibility in every part of the body. All the major muscle groups and corresponding attachments are involved in the two competitive lifts: shoulder girdle, back, and hips and legs. A lack of flexibility in the shoulders will prevent the lifter from locking out snatches and jerks. It may also keep him from racking a weight on his shoulders while cleaning. Tightness in the hips will have an adverse affect on getting into a low position for snatches and cleans.

Because every part of the body is activated during the execution of the two Olympic lifts, every joint and muscle group needs to be given some attention before doing any heavy lifting. And this is where there is confusion between the two disciplines needed to enhance flexibility: warming up and stretching. While closely related, they are not the same. Merely stretching a muscle or joint isn’t sufficient preparation for a heavy session in the weight room that will be filled with complicated athletic movements.

In this article, I will explain why warming up and stretching are both vital disciplines for all Olympic lifters. Everyone knows a warm muscle is more elastic and reacts better to movement than a cold one. And it’s only common sense to know supple muscles are less prone to injury than tight ones.

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4 Comments on “Warm-Ups, Flexibility and the Olympic Lifter”


wrote …

Warming up and stretching has always been a key part of everybodies daily regimes, especially in health and fitness. I have been using an inversion table and do the exact same. A 5-minute warm up, followed by 5-10 mins of stretching.


wrote …

I am not doing workout because of my knee problem but I have learnt that some time using vacuum cleaner helps me to do good workout.


Jacob Nadav wrote …

As far as stretching, it could be dangerous as this is "passive" mobility, or passive range you have no control over. This is the difference between flexibility and mobility - the control.
You are far more likely to get injured in new range you can't control regardless if the workout is designed for performance, losing the belly or for muscle gain.
The only exception is isometrics and strength.


wrote …

Bill Starr explains how to incorporate isontonics and isometrics into your strength program.Audio baby monitors

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