Russian Training Methods in Olympic Weightlifting (P II)

By | January 13, 2018

Russian Training Methods in Olympic Weightlifting (P II)

Conduct of Sporting Training.

The choice of adequate load for a give condition of the organism of the sportsman is the basic question of sporting training. In relation to the condition of the lifter, the level of development of motive qualities, the trainer and lifter choose that training load which will give the greatest effect on the attainment of sporting results.


Various criteria are made use of in defining the character of the training load. These are; volume of load, intensity, lifting maximum of performance of the exercises, tempo, speed of lifting the bar, length of a session, regimes of muscular activity, rest periods between sets.



We will look at each of these criteria.


Volume of Load

As already stated, by volume of load is meant the total weight lifted in a training session or definite cycle, week, month or year. Volume of load is  usually expressed in kilos or tons.


For example, a  lifter lifted in the snatch 100 kgms for 5 sets of 2 reps: 100x5x2 = 1000 kgms. In the snatch pull he lifted 110 kgms for 3 reps: for 10 sets: 110x3x10 = 3300 kgms. In the squat he performed 4 reps: for 5 sets with 150 kgms :  150x4x5 = 3000kgms. The bench press was performed with a weight of 100 kgms for 4 sets of 5 reps: 100x4x5 = 2000 kgms.


Summing the total volume in training we find that the lifter in various ways lifted  9300 kgms or 9.3 tones. The volume of load gives a total declaration of the performed work. But it does not say anything about the character of the work i.e. with which weights the lifter trained. Some times the training work is expressed in kilogram-meters. The weight with which the lifter is exercising is multiplied by the height to which it is lifted. Expressing the load in kg-m is, of course, more informative. But this method, either, does not give an expressed in kilos and kg-m have a correlated relationship one with the other. Therefore, in practice, most often when using the criteria of volume of load, it is expressed in kilos.


For the conveniences of planning the volume of load is divided into small, medium, large and maximum. Depending on preparedness, the sizes of the volume of load for different lifters varies in absolute terms. Expressing in percentage of maximum volume for every lifter, a  small volume of load will be up to 50%, medium 50-70%, large 70-90%, maximum above 90%.


A training load only gives the desired results in the case of a systematic application. Therefore, it is usual to work out the volume of load for training by week, month and year.


The training load of highly qualified lifters can be a few hundred kilos or 20 and more tons. In a week from 10 to 60 and more tons. In a month from 30 to 300 and more tons. In  a year from 600 tons to 2000 and more tons.


For the attainment of high sporting results by lifters it is necessary to accustom, the organism to definite training in the course of the year. Now a days, round the year training has become the rule in all types of sport.



Analysis of the loads of the strongest lifters of the world shows that 7-8 years ago, all lifters had a year volume of load on average of about 800-1000 tons. Today in the majority of highly qualified lifters the year volume of load has grown to 3000 tons. But our investigation showed that the year volume of load does not have a close relation to sporting results. There are lifters who have high results with a relatively low volume of work and there are athletes who show such attainments with a large volume of load.


The planned tendency in recent years to sharply increase the training load can be seen as a negative phenomenon. Today many specialists talk of the necessity of year load of 4000 tons and more. It is said that lifters must achieve a limit load. Such a training load most often leads to overtraining, increases the number of injuries, shortening the sporting life of the lifter.


In this connection all the more widely various rehabilitation measures have begun to be adopted. More than this, today it is precisely shown that the further increase of sporting attainment is based not only on the increasing of the training load, but also on the speed of rehabilitation of the lifter after training and competition. The analysis of the preparation of lifters shows that without the application of measures for the recovery of the organism after loading, its further increase brings negative consequences.



It is reckoned that motive skill in highly qualified lifters is very stable. But our investigation has shown, too, that the technique of performance of specialist exercises exists in dependence on the size and character of the training load. Large loads, especially overload weights, are a disturbance to the kinetic and dynamic parameters of the performance of the exercise.


The further increase of sporting attainment as the result of the increase of the volume of load will be only of small effect. As the consequence of the application of inappropriately large loads, the organism of the lifter does not succeed in recovering. But the products of work-breakdown of muscular activity are not got rid of quickly and neutralized by an organism that is not in condition. This results in the inhibition by end-products of a definite metabolic path in cells of active tissue, will relate to the degree of exhaustion of energetic and plastic resources of the organism.


Therefore, it is extremely important today to locate for every lifter not the limit volume of load, but the optimum volume, giving the greatest effect in the attainment at minimum cost.


By optimum sporting load we understand that minimum, in character, details, volume, intensity, which answers all the stated demands – the attainment of high record results. Minimum training load, however, does not mean that it is insignificant in size. No, it is the optimum for a given level of result.


Finding the optimum parameters of loading is the main essence of sporting training.


Khizer Hayat Raja

Sr. Lecturer in Physical Education & Sports

International Weightlifting Coach & Expert

E mail:

Affiliated with Olympic style weightlifting since 1989. First as player and from 1998 as a coach.  Author of a book and keen in research work.

Presently serving as Sr. Lecturer in Physical Education and Sports at a College. Coaching and training many Juniors & Seniors in Olympic style weightlifting. Produced many National and International weightlifters within and out side the country.

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