Olympic Lifting Simplified
How to get the most power from a pull. Let’s paint a picture for you for a second and then we will come back to Olympic lifting. You are pulling your friend in a wagon with a rope and the wagon gets stuck in some mud. You being the strong CrossFitter you are know you can pull your friend out of the mud but Bill Nye the Science Guy stops you.
Do you think you will generate more power if I give you the world’s strongest man to help you pull but the rope will start with 5 feet of slack in it?
Only you get to pull but there is no slack left in the rope?
Of course everyone should know that you can generate more power with the rope that has zero slack because even with the worlds strong man when he goes to pull the rope that has slack in it he will only be able to pull the rope tight and most likely fall on his butt. While you pulled with a tight rope any force you could generate into that tight rope will move your friend stuck in the mud.
Now take that same line of thinking to the barbell. If you pull early with your arms or don’t fully extend your hips, no matter how strong you are you will not be able to generate as much power as the person who keeps their arms long and extend their hips. This is why you see those 5’5” 165lb athletes able to squat clean 400lbs.