Jan 21, 2002

Make-up Your Mind

January 20 "Do I contradict myself? Very well, I contradict myself." -Walt Whitman

StrongerAthletes.com maintains that performing Olympic lifts does not benefit an athlete in any sport other than the actual sport of Olympic lifting. In our research we have come across many confusing viewpoints. Some coaches believe that a hang/power clean does
not neuromuscularly transfer to better skill performances in the sport but will still incorporate these lifts in their program. See To Transfer or Not To Transfer.

It is true according to the Principle of Specificity that this transfer cannot occur. Some say that they still perform the exercise for coordination development. Coordination development for what, the power clean? Why don’t they just practice the actual sport skill besides waste time with these potentially dangerous exercises?

Doug Lentz in his article “Strength Training For the Adolescent Athlete” in Strength and Health Magazine states, “ The ability to perform the actual snatch or clean and jerk lifts with heavy resistance is unnecessary for the training of many sports besides weight lifting. That said, I do strongly believe that the aforementioned sports (soccer, football, basketball, baseball, softball, etc.) do benefit greatly from the learning an incorporation of explosive movements.”

In other words Lentz’s comments can be interpreted as: “Olympic lifts will not benefit the athlete in any sport but weightlifting, however, the athlete will benefit from explosive lifting.” This statement seems contradictory and confusing. If anybody has another interpretation of this statement, please let us know and we will post it up.

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