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Fadi

...
We've all seen some crazy weights been lifted by some very strong Olympic weightlifters; I'm referring to squatting here.

You see a middleweight (75kg) weightlifter back squatting something like 290kg the way he just squatted 150 or 200kg.

Great so where is this post heading?

The point here is that when the lifter, (be he that Olympic weightlifter or powerlifter), when he's driving up with that squat, or pushing the bar off his chest in the bench press, his line of power is almost always perfect, hence he's able to direct maximum energy / maximum force genertaion along the most perfect path. We take that for granted and assume that our complete lift (say a snatch or a clean) is going to reflect this power we have demonstrated whilst performing assistance lifts such as the squat or the pull off the platform for example. Yet (and that's what this post is about), even a slight deviation off of that line of power, where the bar is travelling in its most energy efficient path, we find that lifter struggling to push through or complete a given lift.

That is why I am in favour of the controversial Bulgarian system of training (designed by coach Ivan Abadjiev), where the main focus is on the main two lifts, with only the front squat as an assistance exercise. The wisdom behind this approach to strength/power training is that you want your lifter to become proficient in what counts; the two main lifts (or three as is the case in powerlifting). Not only that, but by avoiding all assistance work (like pulls etc.), you eliminate any potential weakness that has at its very core, the reinforcement of misdirected energy.
 

Fadi

...
I agree. People are welcome to follow the former Soviet Union approach or any other approach for that matter. I prefer the main lifts of clean and jerk and snatch over performing 20 or so of accessary exercises to help me with lifting these two main lifts. In other words, rather than throw so much focus on the mean to that end, I'd prefer to start with the end itself, and the mean that allows me to do that, is the elimination of the "middle-man" so to speak.

The other side of the coin that is accessary work, is the reinforcement of a bad habit. You see, if I choose to stick with the snatch and clean and jerk for my training purposes, then it would be a case of immediate black and white as far as an outcome is concerned. That is, either I lift the weight or I don't. If on the other hand I get involved in lifting so many parts that go to make up those two lifts, there's more chance of me developing a bad habit through lifting "off center" so to speak.

Bulgaria, one of the smallest countries in Europe, stood to the might of the whole Soviet Union in the sport of Olympic weightlifting. That fact alone gets my attention and warrants my respect.

Different lifting methodologies are a plenty, take your pick and do what you believe is best for you.
 

spartacus

Well-known member
I agree with that.

personally, from my own experience, I agree with you that too much is made assistant lifts like snatch and clean pulls. If I remember right from reading the Soviet Review, Russian sports journal, even some soviet champions focused more on specific lifts.
 
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