Under Dog Situations- OL

“Good morning ladies and gentleman, today you will be learning the ins and outs of Olympic weight lifting. By mid afternoon today, you will be questioning why the hell you thought it would be a good idea to sign up for this workshop.. you will still have three hours left. You will be tired, your body will be sore and your mind will be over loaded, I will push you further”.

This was the introduction to my workshop this past weekend. I can’t say I was super excited after it. I can say that I learned an immense amount of information though. I took this workshop not only because I needed to get my continuing education credits but because I truthfully suck at Olympic lifts. And there is no better way to improve upon something than jumping right in 😉

For those of you who do not know what an Olympic Lift is, I am sure you have heard of them. They contain the snatch, clean, jerk and their variations. I have genuinely never understood the technique for these lifts, boy was I enlightened.


I cannot deny that I loved the man holding this workshop. Aside from the fact that he is extremely educated, he presented the lifts in a direct, no bullshit manner. He openly made fun of people’s lack of education (ie. Squats are bad for you) and basically told you to leave if this was your line of thinking (I guess you can say  we have similar views).

I think the reason I learned so much from this workshop is that he made us do the moves a thousand freaking times. We spent 2 hours building up and working on the snatch. TWO HOURS. He literally drilled it into our heads.

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This was an attempt at a snatch after about an hour and a half. I quite surprised myself as I find there is so much to remember!

When we finally progressed to the actual snatch, he walked around videotaping us and we spent thirty minutes afterwards analyzing our technique and how to improve them. This was repeated with both the cleans and the jerks.

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This is me completing a clean. I normally have trouble catching the bar in the rack position but I learned a fun way t stretch my shoulders which helped a lot!

Needless to say, I woke up feeling like I had been hit by a truck. A very big truck. Shrugging and over head presses are a big part of these movements. After having performed over three hundred shrugs my traps the next day were screaming.

But I learned. I understood. And overall, I consider it a great workshop (aside from the bloody six hours of driving this workshop entailed!). Olympic lifts are great exercises to increase power output and to improve over all physique- but if you do not have the time to learn them properly, they are a useless tool.

I knew when signing up for this workshop it would b hard. I knew I would be out of my element and probably feel awkward as hell. And I did. So why did I join in? Because in order to get results you have never had you have to do things you’ve never done. So there I was, the under dog… and it was worth every minute 🙂