There are a few of us at HYDRA and pretty keen on moving heavy barbells off the ground, especially over our heads from the ground! The gym is their playground 24/7 and even though we have a dedicated olympic lifting-program that runs during the week, I say lift as much as you want! the better you lift, the more you end up lifting and vice versa.
Why Olympic Lifting you ask?
Well the answer is fairly simple - it is the one training system that builds superior lower body strength and power. Gymnastics is great for strength but power comes from the legs and the hips and there is no known form of training that can beat Olympic lifting at the power game.
Olympic lifters have amazing lower body (leg) strength, superlative sprint speeds and very impressive vertical jumps. It's no secret that it is one of the most common tools used to improve athletes speed and power output ratios, be it football (all sorts), crossfit, gymnastics (more recently) and most professional sports.
Another important benefit of Olympic weightlifting is it teaches the body to fire all the muscle fibers at once; to explode in a sense (not literally). An 8 week study was done showing the capability of the Olympic lifts to improve sport performance and vertical jump ability. A study was performed and a group of lifters did various Olympic lifts (High pulls, Power Clean, and Clean and Jerk), and were compared to a group using vertical jump exercises (Single and Double Leg Hurdles Hops, Alternated Single-leg Hurdle Hops, etc) and after the 8 weeks of training the Olympic weightlifting group had significantly increased their 10 meter sprint speed and their standing jump over the control group using standard vertical jump exercises (Tricoli). Similarly a 15 week study was also performed using football players and compared a powerlifting program to an Olympic weightlifting program for athletic performance. After the 15 week study was over the Olympic weightlifting group had a significant improvement in the vertical jump and 40 meter sprint over the powerlifting group (Hoffman JR).
Clearly there are athletic benefits that come from incorporating weightlifting into a sport training program and similarly Olympic weightlifters are also known for developing great athletic ability.
Unfortunately, with the advent of globo-gyms today, weightlifting has lost its popularity due to the emergence of machines and bodybuilding.
We aim to reduce that effect by teaching it in a safe environment as part of our movement program for lower body strength.
Move well, move strong, move always!