Monthly Archives: March 2013

Snatch Trajectories of Elite World Class Weightlifters

Illustrated below are the trajectories of the best ranked snatches, places 1-9 ; both male and female 69kg lifters at the 2010 world championships. This is the only common category of men’s and women’s Olympic weightlifting. Each placing male vs female was compared, ie 1st place(male) 1st place(female)

The specific lifters that went with each graphic were not identified. This is consistently the case with “scientific papers”. I was curious to know who was who, as a coach studying technique it is important(I had a need to know). It would seem rather straight forward to look at the results of the 2010 worlds, and figure out placings. The official record did not jive with the data(wt of bar in kg and the age of the competitor). It was only when I compared the data of wt lifted with the age of the competitor could I zero in who was the lifter. The rankings go from left to right, top to bottom. 1st place is the top left graphic.

Lifters disqualified for doping (Liao & Miculescu) and those who bombed in the CJ(Razvan) were included in the placings.  Christine Girard was not included with a 104kg snatch because she lifted in the B grouping. Similarly not included in the mens category there was Triyatno in the B group who snatched 146kg and finished 3 rd overall.

The 1st place Shimkova RUS jumped forward in snatch. There were several lifters who did not move the bar rearward at liftoff, notably Miculescu who had the 3 rd highest snatch. In the majority of the 18 lifters the bar never went forward of the vertical starting point. Interestingly Liao CHN after liftoff had a nearly straight vertical pull through the whole motion.

Except for the 1st graphic, the names of the men are labeled on the right, women on the left. On the 1st graphic the men are Binay and Liao.

Posted in Olympic Weightlifting Technique

Yuri Zakharevich – Chart of his annual performance increases

Weightlifting achievements

Olympic champion (1988);
Senior world champion (1985–1987);
Silver medalist in Senior World Championships (1981 & 1982);
European champion (1984–1988);
Silver medalist in European Championships (1981, 1982, & 1990);
Set 35 world records during career.

Career bests

Snatch: 210.0 kg in the class to 110 kg;
Clean and jerk: 250.5 kg 1988 on Cardiff in the class to 110 kg;
Total: 440.0 kg (200.0 + 240.0) 1983 on Odessa in the class to 100 kg;
Total: 455.0 kg (210.0 + 245.0) 1988 Summer Olympics in the class to 110 kg.

Interestingly the highlights of the Soviet meet in Odessa 1983 were telecast to the North American Market by a US sports show. Zakharevich was in the majority of the coverage. Clearly on a BW basis this was his best lifting.  I will have to dig out that VHS tape sometime.

Yuri Zakharevich weightlifter

Yuri Zakharevich

I mainly follow the Soviet coaching system and this chart is very helpful in showing the typical progression for more Elite International lifters. My observation is that this chart is similar to many Soviet champions that I have seen published over the years in Soviet literature.

chart of the yearly progress of Yuri Zakharevich RUS
I highlighted the years 7 to 11(the number of the yr spent training) that coincide with Zakharevich’s ages 16-20 that are characteristic of a time frame that typically shows accelerated results. The initial results of training were not spectacular in part because the “soviet system” does not recommend pushing early on in development of weightlifters. I believe the best time to introduce youth to Olympic weightlifting would be 9 to 12 yrs of age.

Posted in Olympic Weightlifting History

David Rigert

I’m reading a rough translation of a Russian book “Noble Metal” the story of the legendary David Rigert, holder of 68 world records. In the autobiography Rigert starts the first chapter of the book with the worst and toughest episode of his lifting career, his failure in Moscow at the 1980 Olympic games.  He does keep his sense of humor by saying even he was curious occasionally to read or hear yet another “arm chair” media theory why he failed at either Munich 1972 or Moscow 1980. He sets the matter straight. His biggest failure(Moscow) cannot be spoken about until the failure at the 1972 Olympics. In reference to Munich he is candid saying his ego got in the way, it was all about setting records, and totally dominating his competition. It seems he does take full responsibility for his failure. At Montreal his tactics were different, take just enough to win the competition, if there were attempts left over that is then the time to try and set WR’s. In Montreal Rigert quickly dropped his opening snatch attempt after his team mate Poltarotsky(90kg) bombed with in the snatch. The Olympic title was to Rigert one of the most coveted, the ultimate title, saying that Olympic gold has eluded many great champions. (Side note he mentions he B squatted 300kg before Montreal).

OK onto Moscow, the fact that the title could be won on home soil adds even more prestige, but more pressure . Rigert’s plan immediately after the 1976 Olympics was to win gold again at the 1980 Olympics in Moscow in the new 100kg category. He felt the timing was perfect; the new category was meant for him, surely this was an omen and the gods were smiling. In 1976 he was 29 yrs old and beginning to hate the tedious reduction in BW to lift at 90kg. Also wt loss over many yrs affects ultimate progress, losing bw is easier when you are young. He also remembered that his coach Rudy Plukfelder had won Olympic gold in 1964 at Tokyo at 36 yrs of age. If anyone could get him there it was his old beloved coach Plukfelder. (Rigert is very candid throughout the book saying he owes his success as a weightlifter to Plukfelder. )Yet another reason was Rigert lifted for competition, man against man on the platform. Training was necessary, but competition in his words “was a holiday”. He reckoned competition would be tougher in the 100kg category, especially in the former Soviet Union. Some notable names; Arekelov,Saidulaev,Kononov,Sots,Poltoratski,Naniev,Kozolov,Nitikin,Zakharevich to name just a few. This “heavy” competition would no doubt push him to higher limits.  As planned two months before the 1980 Olympics he had recorded the official WR 181 sn and 3 wks before an official 230kg WR CJ.

Rigert thought his special performance at the last minute should have solidified his selection at 100kg. He was wrong. It was all for naught, his recent joy of new records and dreams of future records turned to anguish when the coaching council still insisted he reduce  yet again down to 90kg for the Olympics, in spite of the fact that his BW was 99kg+. The tedious reduction down to 90kg resulted in his % body fat going medically dangerously below 4%, this was well below the Soviet standard of 7.6%. The late Ota Zaremba CZE won the 100kg at the 1980 Olympics with 180kg sn and 215kg CJ. The blooming Igor Nikitin who Rigert had give up his spot for, only did 177.5kg + 215kg for 2nd place. Unlike Munich where he took personal responsibility for his failure, in Moscow he could accept none. Chapter one ends with “In my heart, I was bitter.”

Known for drinking prodigious quantities of milk. He took a fair ribbing in training camps. His rural Soviet diet was the antithesis of the Paleo diet.

Posted in Olympic Weightlifting History

Gallery photos are back

Using WordPress can be a little frustrating. I use a wordpress template made by Photocrati. When wordpress gets updated it sometimes creates an incompatibility with Protocrati. I believe after a WordPress update my Photocrati gallery menu on the front page was “missing”. The fix was to update the newest release of Photocrati, the galleries are back.

Posted in Uncategorized