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Old 06-07-2010, 07:40 AM   #1
Mike Watson
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How did you learn to

Clean, jerk and snatch? My friend who I started lifting with last year before I got hurt showed me. Now he's deployed and I'm relying on youtube videos to see the form. Do you think spending some time on form with just the bar would work? Muscle memory and all, or do you would my form likely go to crap when adding weight?
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:46 AM   #2
Casey Raiford
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Re: How did you learn to

First off let me say that my oly lifts still need work. That being said, I watched all of the vidoes on the main site. Then I scoured youtube. Then I bought Olympic Weightlifting by greg Everret. Then I got some coaching here and there. Next weekend I'm going to the oly lifting cert. Later this year or next I want to go to the USAW club coach cert. I'm finding it's a process, rather than an act.
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Old 06-07-2010, 08:03 AM   #3
Jamie J. Skibicki
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Re: How did you learn to

Bill starr learned on his own, so did alot of the older guys. Greg Everrets book is invaluable for this.
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Old 06-07-2010, 08:36 AM   #4
Todd Rehm
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Re: How did you learn to

I also find videotaping myself invaluable. I can watch it myself and post it to the digital coaching forum here, at Everett's site or other places and have folks give feedback/advice.

Doesn't need to be anything fancy. My "push here, dummy" digital camera takes decent video and allows me to upload to youtube, vimeo, etc.

If you have access to a fancy digital camera that allows you to shoot at 240 frames/second or faster, that would be awesome. Justin Lascek in Wichita Falls ( - has some swearing, don't recommend for work or with children present) has posted some videos of lifts filmed at a high frame rate and the ability to watch playback in slow-motion.
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Old 06-07-2010, 10:09 AM   #5
David Newman
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Re: How did you learn to

I've been doing CF for about 2 years now and traditional weights alot longer. (without giving my age away) Never got into Oly lifts until CF took over though. The best way to learn the proper techniques in my opinion, is to take the Oly cert. The Bergener staff is incredible. Learning the lifts from the proper people, really helps out all other aspects of CF. Just my 2 cents for what its's worth.
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Old 06-07-2010, 11:11 AM   #6
Andrew Schechterly
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Re: How did you learn to

Catalyst Athletics helped me. They have lots of videos and breaking the movements down really helped me out. Doing the 2 and 3 position snatches and cleans were beneficial because I pretty much learned it in segments and beat the movements into my muscle memory... then, after much repetition it all flowed much more smoothly.

I think olympic lifts, especially snatch, are kind of hard to teach. I'm a poor conveyor of information in general but that's just a strange, explosive movement.
And so you left us, jaded and gaunt, some September...wilted with the seasons... -GLS 1958-1998
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Old 06-07-2010, 06:32 PM   #7
Albert Chang
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Re: How did you learn to

I've got Greg Everett's book and seminar DVD. Both are excellent. I'm now working with Justin Keane who just got affiliated. He's been very helpful.
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Old 06-07-2010, 06:41 PM   #8
Júlíus Magnússon
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Re: How did you learn to

I trained at an Olympic lifting gym for a few months.

Later I read Greg Everett's book.

Preferably do both. But if you can't get to an Oly gym there's no excuse not to read the book. It's awesome.

Practicing with just the bar is fine at the very start if you're an absolute beginner. But you can have a perfect 20kg snatch and a craptastic 60kg snatch - eventually you'll have to put some weight on the bar to get better at heavier weights.

Most likely, though, practicing relentlessly with just the bar for a prolonged time will have you develop and ingrain some bad habits that aren't visible at 20kg, but become painfully obvious at heavier weights.
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Old 06-07-2010, 11:48 PM   #9
Blair Robert Lowe
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Re: How did you learn to

I learned the lifts in HS. More so, I watched the other football players and mimicked them badly. I built up to an alright C&J but my snatch sucked. And it continued to suck for over a decade till I came across CF again and continued to suck for a bit after that despite what books I read or video I watched.

Going to a few clinics on each of the lifts helped a lot, but they only look good when I go light vs really piling on what I could used to do crappily.

If you can, see if there any local clinics going down around or perhaps some private lessons.

the CF Oly cert, USAW, or PM seminar all sound great if you have the means. If you don't, look for some clinics or a PL lesson.

However, even after that you will still need to spend time with the bar.

I'm confident about my 2nd and 3rd pull but my 1st pull still sucks ***. And I need to spend more than 1-2x with a bar and need to video it so I have a better idea of what it looked like versus what it felt like.
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Old 06-08-2010, 05:35 AM   #10
Tamara Cohen
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Re: How did you learn to

My CF coaches are pretty good at coaching the Oly lifts. I did some private coaching when I first started. I also went to the Wilkes seminar, which I highly recommend. And, I video tape myself. I'm very good at knowing what I am doing wrong. I'm just not as great about fixing it, haha. I recently bought Greg Everett's book, but I haven't read it yet.
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