Strength training has long been an integral part of fitness. People train with barbells and other exercise machines to strengthen their health, develop muscle strength and improve their appearance.
Olympic weightlifting was a precursor to current strength training and fitness. Many stereotypes about weightlifting have developed over the years. In particular, there were myths about the low growth of weightlifters, the harmful influence of training with a barbell on joints and a backbone.
Another stereotype was that only very strong sportsmen with “big bellies” could cope with strength loads during training. In addition, in some states, women and children were banned from weightlifting. This sport was popularized mainly among the military and rural residents. However, gradually these myths were refuted both at the scientific level and in practice.
Over the past fifteen years, as functional fitness has become very popular around the world, the fitness industry has increasingly borrowed from weightlifting, in particular strength exercises.
Why Has Weightlifting Become So Popular?
Here are some reasons:
- strength training increases the strength of athletes, their flexibility, speed, endurance and coordination;
- it contributes to the improvement of the respiratory and cardiovascular systems of the human body;
- athletes have the opportunity to strengthen their muscles, joints and ligaments.
Nowadays, solving these problems ensures a happy life, and this will inevitably affect what emotions and feelings will dominate the human psyche.
So who is weightlifting for? The answer is very easy – for almost everyone.
What Should a Beginner Do if He Decides to Start Training?
Be sure to undergo a medical examination before you start weightlifting. In particular, this applies to the youngest sports fans, because their body is not yet fully formed.
Of course, during strength training, you can not do without a quality barbell and an experienced trainer. At the same time, the athlete must take into account important nuances. In particular, the fact that his future coach must be not only experienced but also motivated and have the appropriate education.
Talk to this person, study his personal qualities and philosophy, find out if he has a desire to improve. He must have the psychology of a leader who knows his job well and inspires confidence.
Before a future weightlifter starts training, he must think about what goals and results he would like to achieve:
- maximum sports achievements at the international level;
- building muscle mass and strength;
- mastering the technique of strength exercises, which will be used in training and in other sports.
Here you can not do without the help of a good coach. Be prepared for the fact that at the beginning of the training you will perform not strength exercises, but light tests for coordination and flexibility. Such tests make it possible to assess the inclinations and physical data of the athlete for the correct formation of the training program.
One of the most common tests in this sport is the overhead squat. Sometimes coaches also test the abilities of the athletes with a long jump. Interestingly, many beginners in weightlifting fail to perform these two exercises correctly.
At first, the specific vocabulary of the coach may not be completely clear to a beginner. But this is normal because the beginner is not yet familiar with all the weightlifting terms and expressions. All this can be easily assimilated. The training process will be divided into stages (week, month, or even year).
During this time, you will achieve a variety of goals: learn exercise techniques, learn about their phases, build muscle, increase flexibility, and develop other physical abilities.
There are four groups of exercises in weightlifting. The first group includes general exercises, the second – special, the third – auxiliary. And the last group is competitive exercises.
General exercises help a sportsman gain good physical shape and strength. Special emphasis is placed on them at the beginning of the training process.
Special exercises include certain elements of the snatch, clean and jerk, which reproduce them in terms of movement dynamics, structure and involvement of muscle groups. Usually, such exercises are new for beginner weightlifters and require a responsible approach to learning the technique of their performance.
With accessory exercises, a strong base is formed. The athlete improves his physical qualities and comprehensively improves his health.
In turn, competitive exercises include clean and jerk. During their performance, the weightlifter must get the best result.
So if you are determined to start weightlifting, do not hesitate! The experience and results will never make you regret your choice!
Keep your Body Warm and Mind Cold!!
Ihor Shymechko is a renowned Ukrainian weightlifter. He has represented his country in several Olympic Games, notably in 2008, 2012, and 2016. His impressive career includes winning the European championship in 2009 and earning a silver medal in 2011 in the +105 kg division. Shymechko also earned a Ph.D. from Lviv State University of Physical Culture.