Olympic Weightlifting in CrossFit and its Role in the Exercise Program

Olympic weightlifting is an exercise that is often integrated into the CrossFit program. It is composed of two significant lifts including the clean and jerk and the snatch. The snatch is the first step whereby the athlete lifts the barbell from the ground in one smooth movement to overhead. In the second phase, the clean and jerk, the athlete often lifts the barbell from the floor to his or her shoulder and then overhead in a position referred to as locked out. The lifts are increasingly significant in testing for functional and explosive strength, while taking the entire body through it optimizes a broad range of motions. The body  often works as a whole during these lifts and, therefore, it significantly benefits from the lifts that are often fast, dynamic and technical (Why we use Olympic lifts).

CrossFit programs often teach that people must train in and become highly accomplished in ten vital skills for them to attain an all-inclusive fitness. As the trainees continue to realize and increase their capacity in all of the ten skills, they become elite athletes with remarkable physical competence. The ten skills are endurance, strength, stamina, flexibility, coordination, speed, power, balance, agility, and accuracy. The goal of training in CrossFit, therefore, becomes to find the best ways to gain these ten skills. Olympic weightlifting is of particular importance because it trains and improves all the ten skills. While the principal targets of weightlifting include power, flexibility, strength, coordination and balance, it also benefits athletes in the rest of the skills (Why we use Olympic lifts).

Furthermore, Olympic weightlifting is also essential in CrossFit training because it is unique in that it gives people the capacity to create a muscular and neurological adaptation. Weightlifting often provides athletes and other trainees the opportunity and ability to efficiently activate various muscle fibers more rapidly than through other modes of training available. The explosiveness that results from Olympic weightlifting is significant in all sports because it improves all the ten skills, which are the basis of a functional and strong core to extremity movement. The core begins with a stable spine or core and goes on to create a wave of muscle contractions in the weaker body areas. These are the basis of the natural recruitment of muscles in the body, and by making use of all parts of the body, the athlete becomes significantly powerful (Why we use Olympic lifts).

There are several reasons as to why Olympic weightlifting is essential in CrossFit programs and any other conditioning and strength exercises. One is that it leads to the development of the hip and leg extension power, which by itself is more than sufficient reason for the inclusion of the technique in CrossFit. Other important reasons are that it helps in the development of the capacity to safely and efficiently control and absorb external forces and improve one’s motor skills. The principal purpose of the lifts is to lift the barbell to overhead from the floor. The activity produces remarkable explosiveness for trainers that, improves their general strength. Nevertheless, it is essential to note that the technique exposes trainees to a significant risk of injury. The risk to the individual is often associated with poor use of technique and use or performance beyond the capabilities of the individual. Besides, the people who display the poor use of routine also obtain decreased benefits from this type of training. Therefore, it is essential to apply Olympic weightlifting correctly to gain the best results (Everett, 2009).