Friday, November 20, 2009
I have no idea when the concept of using Olympic lifting for strengthening the modern day thrower began but I imagine it caught on when the realization that it was the quickest way to to gain strength and mass. In my opinion, the concept people have to understand is that with the advent of Olympic lifting also came the onset of illegal drug usage such as steroids. Although I agree that Olympic lifts are wonderful for achieving great levels of strength, the sad truth is that there is a limit the average athlete always hits which cannot be overcome unless the use of illicit medication is involved. The harsh reality is that a majority (not all) of world class athletes that have monstrous numbers in the O lifts are not to be envied because they are not attained without the help of substances, which are banned.
The problem I have with O lifts is the concept that you constantly have to continue to increase the amount of weight you lift in order to throw farther. I admit that this is true on many levels but at the same time it makes it seem as though if you cannot lift a certain amount of weight, you cannot throw a certain distance, which i disagree with. There are many other avenues of strength out there. Just because you do not have the best power clean does not mean you will never throw any farther.
Although I admit that Olympic lifts are the fastest way to increase strength and explosiveness, they are not the only solution. Olympic lifts are not for everybody and can actually contribute to many severe chronic injuries in the future if over emphasized. I am a firm believer in a concept I like to call the balanced diet of fitness. Imagine a pie chart that is cut up into various types of exercises, which include power lifts, aerobics, Olympic lifts, body building, plyometrics and throw specific. Now make a mental image on how big a portion of the pie is dedicated to each and you will find that we are all guilty of overcompensating with the Olympic lifts and power lifts versus putting more time into doing throw specific and plyometric strength training. My philosophy is that everybody will have a realm which will be their weakest, all this means is that they will have to dedicate a bigger portion of the other slices of their pie to other exercises which will help them improve. Therefore, understand that variety is the spice of life and realize that although the Olympic lifts are wonderful, there are other, less harmful ways to get stronger.
Leave me a comment and let me know what you think! or email me at email@example.com
Posted by Y. Ayeni at 6:00 PM