RESOURCE: USA WEIGHTLIFTING
1. Transform your physique:
Performing a snatch or a clean and jerk is a full-body, fun, intense exercise working your legs, glutes, back, abs, shoulders and arms all at the same time. You burn a lot of calories during your workouts in a short amount of time. Olympic lifts are a great way to decrease body fat, build muscle, increase strength and maximize your time strength training.
2. Get stronger, more powerful and run faster
Snatches and clean and jerks produce some of the highest power outputs in all of sport. Power, the product of strength and speed, is the key ingredient to helping people run faster and jump higher. Incorporating the Olympic lifts into workouts is the most effective way to build power and speed.
3. Boost Work Capacity
Olympic lifts are versatile, causing a range of positive changes to your body depending on how you program them into your workouts. Olympic lifts can be used to improve strength, speed and power as well as enhance high-intensity exercise endurance, recover more quickly and handle higher amounts of training. With greater work capacity, you can do more exercise each session and reach your health and fitness goals faster.
4. Protect Against Injury
Olympic lifts are full-body movements that target the shoulders, hips, knees and ankles and help promote flexibility and stability across joints. Controlling a load throughout the ROM of all these joints is key to preparing the body for the high forces encountered in sport and in some activities of daily living. A major predictor of future injury is having endured a prior injury, so utilizing the Olympic lifts in training and improving flexibility, strength, and stability, can greatly reduce susceptibility to injury.
5. Improve Bone Density
Especially for women, strengthening bones is critical to prevent osteoporosis and protect against bone fractures. Olympic lifts produce large forces on the legs, spine, and arms, precisely what is needed to stimulate the body to lay down new bone and improve bone density.
6. Enhance Coordination
The Olympic lifts are full-body movements requiring precise coordination, rhythm, and timing. Improving body awareness and coordination are great for both sport performance and activities of daily life.
7. Improve Sport Performance
The Olympic lifts require an athlete to exert a force into the ground through a quick and coordinated “triple extension” of the ankle, knee, and hip, mirroring what happens in sprinting and jumping, the core components of most sports. Other than practicing the sport itself, Olympic lifts have the next highest carryover to directly improving sport performance in sports where strength, power, and speed are essential.
8. Get Confident
Strong is the new skinny; as you get stronger physically, it permeates your whole life. As you are able to master new skills and see what your body is capable of, your confidence in and out of the gym will blossom. Lifting weights with speed and technique as in the Olympics lifts is a rush and many people find that the process of learning and refining the Olympic lifts keeps them excited to workout. The more consistently you workout and use strength training as a tool, the more results you will see.
9. Improve Range of Motion
While some people associate lifting heavy weights with being stiff and bulky, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Olympic lifters are some of the most flexible and mobile athletes in the Olympics.
10. Develop Dynamic Stability
In sport and in life, people are rarely in need of strength when stationary so it’s important to stress the body in the gym to reflect that. Olympic lifts provide strength and stability around major joints at a fast speed of movement, which is what enables the body to be stable in activities of daily life as well as sport. Weightlifting movements are truly functional exercises.