As Max Kerr once said, “Looks like we have ourselves a good ole fashioned blog-off …”
In this corner: The Fallacy of High-Rep Olympic Lifting
And in this corner: The Not-So-Evils of High-Rep Olympic Lifting
I for one am of two minds. I believe that the Olympic Lifts are one of the best tools that Human Beings have to develop pure explosive power, acute coordination, athleticism and amazing strength coupled with mobility. It is my opinion that when coached and trained correctly, the Olympic Lifts have the ability to confer more of the above-mentioned abilities than anything else in the world of strength and conditioning.
In the world of Weightlifting, the objective is to get as strong and explosive as humanly possible. This is done through lower-rep, higher weight training with many years spent perfecting technique. This is a sport, people. And as such, it demands sport-specific training.
However, when poorly taught, coached and implemented, the Olympic Lifts do have the potential for injury. But then, What Doesn’t? I had a gentleman injure himself in the Warm-Up. No shit. He was doing a portion of the dynamic ROM warm-up (punter kicks) and pulled his hamstring. Badly. It has been 2 months, and he is still out nursing it back to health. Should people avoid dynamic warm-ups altogether — or just punter kicks?
I love Rip – I always have — and I think he is doing his due diligence in trying to inform the world of inexperienced idiot coaches and their cockamamie attempts to get the world strong and fit through high-rep O-Lifts. And I think he has some very valid points that demand attention and discussion.
However: Within the context of “sport-specificity” – CrossFit is a sport. And within that sport, there exists the need to train the O-Lifts at light and moderate weight for moderate to high reps. There is no way around this.
That being said, not everyone who “CrossFits” is a participant in “CrossFit Sport”. As such, the whole of the CF Community does not necessarily need to perform O-Lifts at high reps and at high intensity.
But let’s not throw out the baby with the bathwater. There is much that the Snatch and Clean & Jerk can offer – even to newbies – even to old people with poor mobility – even to you and me. I think that the implementation protocols laid out by J. Tsypkin are absolutely on-point.
I think that poor coaching and poor supervision can and will lead to injuries. I also believe that good coaching, proper supervision and programming with a specific goal in mind can lead to improvements in strength, conditioning and mobility. Sometimes with miraculous results.
Don’t take my word for it. Read both articles and come to your own conclusions. Post your comments, thoughts and banter for our discussion, ridicule and judgement.
Oh – and one more for your reading pleasure: Strong is the New Shut the Fuck Up
Week 8 Training 13.08.30
A. 7×1: 3-Position Clean (ground, knee, hip) + 1 Jerk – AHAP – E90S
B1. 3×5: Hang Clean High Pull – Light and Perfect – E60S
B2. 3×3: Split Press – Light and Perfect – E60S
-Thrusters @ 95/65
Notes: Time to PR. Go hard. Have FUN. Make sure ALL your reps are absolutely perfect and exhibit full ROM.