Saturday, December 27, 2008

Photo Fun Dec 08 - 206kg Snatch

A new Super Heavy out of Iran?

Iran's heavyweight Saeed Ali-Hosseini has set new junior weightlifting world record at the Asian Weightlifting Championship in South Korea.

The Iranian athlete took three gold medals in the +105 kg category when he managed to lift 206 kg in the snatch, 245 kg in the clean and jerk and 451 kg in total categories on Monday.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

True Look of Power

Hey, even with my low bodyweight, I was a world champion. You can call it any complex you want, but it just look more appealing to have a guy with a beautiful figure on the platform, than some dude with a huge belly. I do feel more kinship with Schwarzenegger than with the shapeless Paul Anderson, the classics of American weightlifting. - Pisarenko

Thursday, November 20, 2008

LBH Schedule

FYI: There is no weightlifting scheduled for this Friday, November 21st.

Next Wednesday, weightlifting hours are from 3:00PM to 6:30PM. Your boss will understand if you have to leave work early to snatch.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008

2008 World Masters

Best of luck to all the lifters competing at the 2008 World Masters.

2008 World Masters Weightlifting Championships
Argostoli & Kefalonia, Greece
September 27 - October 4 2008

On a related note, LBH will be opening late (@7:00PM) on Monday, Sept 29th and closed on Wednesday, October 1st.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Event: The 2008 NYC Open

When: Saturday, September 20, 2008

Where: Lost Battalion Hall - 93-29 Queens Blvd., Rego Park, N.Y. 11374

Competition Schedule:
Men’s 56, 62, 69, 77, 85 10:00 AM
All Women’s Categs 11:30AM
Men’s 94, 105 & 105+ 12:30 PM

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Top Snatches from the Supers

If you aren't able to see all the videos from the games online, this link has some of the top snatches from the Supers' A session.

Monday, August 18, 2008


If you haven't been watching the lifting, catch up here.

The lost Zercher Squat

Do this lift nice and heavy.More fun than plucking nose hairs, and better for your abs.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Video Coaching

Dan John breaks down lifting on this videocast.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Interview with Kendrick Ferris

Here's talking with America's highest ranked weightlifter at Three White Lights.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Fall Meets in NYC

September 20, 2008: NYC Open Weightlifting Championships at Lost Battalion Hall Spectators welcome 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Contact meet director Chris Smith for entry form.

October 25, 2008: Metropolitan Championships Competition at Lost Battalion Hall. Spectators welcome 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Contact meet director Joe Triolo for an entry form.

2008 ESG

The qualifying competitors for the 2008 Empire State Games. Lifting starts July 24th.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Monday, June 9, 2008

Find your gym!

From the very good Weightlifting On-Line Magazine comes this interactive map of snatch friendly gyms.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Norbert Schemansky

Olympic Champion (1952)
Silver Medalist in Olympic Games (1948)
Bronze Medalist in Olympic Games (1960 and 1964)
World Champion (1951, 1953, and 1954)
1955 Pan American Games heavyweight champion
Silver Medalist at Senior World Championships (1947, 1962, and 1963)
Bronze Medalist at Senior World Championships (1964)

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Rigert and Ivanchenko

The great David Rigert displays the arch as he prepares to pull. Gennaldi Ivanchenko displays the back tension during the pull.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Olympic Team Trials Broadcast

Weightlifting Olympic Team Trials will be featured on Sunday May 25th , 2008 between noon-1 pm ET on the MSNBC network.

The Paper of Record

The New York Times has an article on Melanie Roach, USA Olympic hopeful.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Rudy Sablo

NYC area lifter Rudy Sablo was the manager of the United States weightlifting teams in the 1972 and 1976 Olympics and served on the United States Olympic Committee's (U.S.O.C.) board.

He ran the Amateur Athletic Union's (A.A.U.) metropolitan area office for 20 years and helped found the Empire State Games, an annual statewide Olympic-type competition. A Weightlifting Hall of Fame member, Sablo was also honored with an Olympic Shield award by the U.S.O.C.

During WWII, he served as a physical instructor for the Tuskegee Airmen. In the years following, he served as a firefighter for the city of New York. He passed away on February 3rd, 2003.

Every year, a meet is held at Lost Battalion Hall in his memory. This year, the event is scheduled for May 3rd.

Friday, April 18, 2008


260kg C&J at 125kg body weight.

206kg snatch and 245kg first attempt C&J

Monday, April 14, 2008

Get a Coach!

Partially inspired by this post, and a number of posts on certain other boards, here are my top 3 best tips for learning Olympic Weightlifting:
1. Get a coach.
2. Get a coach.
3. Get a coach.
Seriously. An experienced coach, one who has competed and trained competitive lifters, is the best way to learn the lifts by far. A book is not enough. Web assistance is not enough. A weekend seminar is not enough.
How do you find a coach?
This pdf is a club directory from USAW.'s Olympic forum is a real gathering place for coaches and lifters. Search there or post a question asking about lifting in your area.
If you can't reasonably get coaching regularly, then books and videos can help, as can uploading your videos and asking for tips from one of the forums on the right of this page. And making efforts to get coaching in when you can is still important.
But these are all inferior to regular work with an experienced coach.

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Clean: Shoulder Flexibility

Acquiring the flexibility to properly rack a clean can be a challenge. The following are some tips I received from LBH master lifter Jeff Scott.

As far as shoulder flexibility for racking cleans goes, there are many stretches that are effective. Your shoulder routine should include:

1. Dislocates with a broom stick.
2. Rack stretches. Lock a bar into the power rack and have someone apply a steady, GENTLE upward stretch on your elbows. Keep the pressure on for 20 seconds, relax for 10 seconds then repeat a few times.
3. Practice power cleans with a light weight 20, 30 or 40 kilos. Do lots of reps and concentrate on whipping the elbows and keeping the shoulder girdle relaxed. Do the reps from the floor and try to do 6-10 reps a minute for 3 minutes or more. You can rest in the start position for a few seconds between reps. These should make you sweat but not tire you out.
4. If you can rack a power clean properly but can't rack a squat clean very well then your flexibility challenge is probably in the back -- maybe the rhomboids or the lower spinal erectors.
5. And of course, don't neglect the triceps. They need to be stretched too. Pull your flat hand (palm up) back and down on top of your deltoids. Hold the position for 20 seconds, relax for 10, repeat.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


More back training, something I'm a fan of.
This time a good article on the how to's of the barbell row.
This is an under-utilized lift in most gyms.
Why are most people cable and machine rowing instead of barbell rowing? Because barbell rows are harder, and most people just don't want to work hard.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Squats: How Low Do You Go?

With the multitude of assistance exercises one can use to improve their Olympic lifts, the more specific the assistance movement (i.e., the more similar it is to the classical lift) the greater the carryover. In regards to squatting, one should strive to use the same range-of-motion and dynamics used in the competition lifts. In other words: don’t half-ass your depth unless you’ve got a good reason to (e.g., caution with an existing injury, intentionally heavy partials, etc.). While I can’t state this as a fact, I’m pretty sure Pisarenko dies a little bit on the inside every time someone uses a medicine ball to gauge the depth of their front squats. Please be considerate of this legendary athlete.

For an Olympic-style weightlifter, the squat is the king of assistance exercises. But at the end of the day, it’s just that – an assistance exercise. Don’t get me wrong, an Olympic lifter should strive to become an exemplary squatter, but not at the expense of padding one’s ego using big weights with poor range-of-motion.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Dave Rigert

130kg snatch, barefoot, without warmup.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Get Your Protein On!

Lyle McDonald breaks it all down at

What it means to me is that my typical in-training intake is way too low.

2008 Nationals Slide Show

From Bruce Klemens.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Friday, March 21, 2008

Gotta earn it the hard way.

“You can have all the money in the world but you can’t buy a body."

Thursday, March 20, 2008

2008 Larry Mintz Weightlifting Video

Video from the men's 69-85kg classes. More video coming...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Larry Mintz Memorial Weightlifting meet this Saturday

Lost Battalion Hall will host the Larry Mintz Memorial Weightlifting Meet this Saturday, March 15 in Rego Park, Queens, New York. Location information can be found here. Start time for the first session is 10am.
Be there!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Learning the Snatch: Backward Chaining

Backward chaining, as it pertains to motor skill development, involves breaking a movement down into segments and learning the last motion of the sequence first. Once that motion has been learned, the preceeding segments are then incorporated, one by one, and drilled until the trainee has accounted for the entire chain of movement. The rationale is that the mind and body can more easily process and learn these individual parts, as opposed the entire movement at once. Also, backward chaining the snatch (as well as the clean) places emphasis on the most critical power producing movement of the entire lift: the 2nd pull.

Backward chaining is one of the foundations of the Soviet Model for teaching the lifts. A sample progression, as recommended by former national team coach Alexander Medvedyev, would run something like this:
-Power snatch from hang position above the knees
-Power snatch from hang position below the knees
-Power snatch from the floor

From there, the progression to full snatch is forward chained:
-Power snatch from the floor
-Power snatch from floor to overhead squat
-Squat snatch from floor

It is also worth noting that the Soviet Model calls for learning the snatch before the clean. A topic for future discussion.

You gotta squat.

Mike's Gym - website of an official Regional Training Center for USA Weightlifting and Mike Burgener, a top American Olympic Weightlifting coach and father of one of America's best young lifters, has great resources. Here's the squat program page (with an excel download).

Friday, March 7, 2008

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Arnold Classic 2008 Videos

Videos from the Senior Nationals at the Arnold Classic thanks to Benn Overkamp.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Dinosaur Training

This is an old article I found on a page no longer hosted, so I had to find it using the way-back machine.
Basically an attempt to marry Dinosaur Style training with some Westside organization, it seemed a great take on lifting big for some real development in strength.
An outtake...

What I realized is that dinosaur training and the Westside system are much more similar than different. How so? Well,

  1. Both emphasize heavy training. If I might quote the 2 'experts' of Westside and Dinosaur theory, Brooks Kubik says that "HEAVY weights are the name of the game. Never forget that. You need to train with heavy weights because doing so is the only way to build the strength of tendons and ligaments along with your muscles." Louie Simmons says that "We know best of all you have to train heavy-very heavy-and often."

  2. Both camps dismiss the typical Western periodization, or cycling, model. Louie Simmons says that "It is my experience that all elements of training must be done simultaneously, or the training effects are lost very quickly", while Brooks Kubik feels that "Back-cycling to 60 or 70% of your max and then working back up is a waste of time. You are going nowhere. Most of your time is spent with poundages too light to test your abilities."

  3. Both systems are devoted to exercises that are hard and heavy. Things like squats, deadlifts, zercher squats, front squats, bench presses, military presses, and reverse hyperextensions are lifts that build strength through compound movements. The exercises in each system are dedicated to building functional strength through a movement chain, not isolating each individual muscle group, unless that muscle group is a weak link. Similarly, because of the fact that training with machines is not as demanding as training with free weights, machines are not of prime importance in either system.

  4. Both systems make use of particularly 'hard aerobics' as I like to call them. The sled dragging, wheelbarrow pushing, and walking lunges of the Westside system are very much like the sandbag carrying and farmer's walks of Dinosaur training.

Here's one of the splits proposed (looks tasty!):

DAY 1: Deadlifts, Front Squats, Bench Press, Bent-Over Rows, Bradford Press, Standing Calf, Seated Calf



DAY 4: Squats, Romanian Deadlifts, Close-Grip Benches, One-Arm DB Press, DB Extensions, Strict Curls, Grip Work



DAY 7: Speed Squats, Speed Bench, Power Cleans, Bent-Over Rows, Push Presses,Standing Calf, Seated Calf



Here's the archived version of the page. If anyone has info on the author, please share.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Doubles for Power!

By Jim Schmitz
U.S. Olympic Weightlifting Team Coach 1980, 1988 & 1992 Author of Olympic-style Weightlifting for Beginner & Intermediate Weightlifters manual and DVD

Reps and Sets for Strength and Power

Over the years I’ve tried many schemes of reps and sets in search of the best number and combinations in order to develop the greatest strength and power. I tried them on myself in the beginning, and then later when I became a trainer and coach, on my athletes. There are many different systems and combinations of sets and reps, and they all may work, but I’m going to tell you what I’ve had success with and why.

I’m a big believer in proper technique and form, at least to the best of one’s ability and physical capabilities. Therefore, I’ve found that doing doubles (2’s) with medium to heavy weights is the best way to get strong with good technique. The reason is that the first rep is no problem, but the second rep must be done correctly in order to be successful. If you do doubles, you must make the second rep absolutely as correct as you can or you won’t make it, or if you do, it will be sloppy.

Therefore, you use weights that are around 80–85% of your best single. This is a weight that you know you can do, so you aren’t afraid of it or you don’t have to use your entire psyche on the lift, but can concentrate on your technique, especially on the second rep. Also, you don’t take the first rep lightly, thinking ahead to the second rep, or you will miss it or do it badly and be unable to do the second rep. You must concentrate very much on the first rep and even more so, on the second rep. You want to make the first rep with your best technique and the second rep with identical technique. When you do these doubles, there is no rest between reps, only enough time to get set and go. The first rep you think about before you do it, and the second rep is pure reaction, you just do it.

The rest of this article and more tips from Jim can be read here on the ironmind website (a good source for lifting tools and strength equipment).

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Polish National Team Training

Excellent video of the Polish team in training.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


My personal library of weightlifting and strength books recently increased a little. Here's where it stands so far:

Essentials of Weightlifting and Strength Training
by Mohamed F. El-Hewie, MD.
Just purchased, so I can't comment on this yet, but you can see his forum and get a sample of his work here.

Strong Enough? by Mark Rippetoe. A collection of thoughts and essays. A very fundamental approach to getting strong via lifting heavy stuff - the only proven effective method..
Sold off. Not worth it.

Weightlifting, Olympic Style by Tommy Kono. The multiple world and Olympic champion (and former Mr. Universe) lays down the fundamentals in a very easy to read, informative and enjoyable book. Illustrative examples are taken from his own experiences. Might be the best book to start a lifter with.

The Weightlifting Encyclopedia: A Guide to World Class Performance
by Arthur J. Drechsler. Exhaustive and comprehensive.

From the Ground Up, by Dan John. A 97 page pdf free from the author's website. Informative and well worth the price. An excellent work that contains nuggets from his experiences and has a great orientation towards lifting and training. It was my first lifting "book."

Monday, February 18, 2008

Serge Redding

Just because.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Dr. Mohamed F. El-Hewie, author of "Essentials of Weightlifting and Strength Training" has a forum dedicated to weightlifting and strength training.

In this post he describes his sequential exercise preference, from mobility to stability. From exercises requiring most coordination to least.
This movement hierarchy - from fine movements to gross movements - is a good ordering tool. It sets the trainee on the tasks that require greatest motor skill precision first, when he is fresh.
El-Hewie's is a well experienced lifter and trainer, with excellent knowledge and unique insights.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Powerful and Efficient Cleaning

Ben Turner (gold medalist at the 2006 Commonwealth Games) displays incredible power and speed under the bar.

Note: the barbell is elevated just high enough for the lifter to successfully rack and recover.

Check out more videos of Ben and his teammates at the Queensland Weightlifting Association (QWA) website:

Friday, February 8, 2008

The back!

Nick McKinless puts together a good run down of back specialization. The back serves all athletes in their endeavors, is really fundamental to health, posture and strength, and as a bonus can look damn impressive when well developed, to boot (see the pic below).

Training Hall Santo Domingo Worlds 2006

An awesome flckr photo set from Rob Macklem showing the world's most powerful training for the world championships in 2006.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

LBH and training update

I returned to Lost Battalion Hall last night for my first training there in over a month. It was an easy night for me, snatching up to 50% only (45kg).
Overall the LBH team is coming out of the winter in good form. I'm not the only one making a mini-comeback from illness or injury, and the team looks likely to contend in upcoming local competitions in March and May.
Recently Masters lifter Jeff Scott nailed a 125kg C&J in competition. Look for him to make his presence known beyond local meets as national masters' competitions come up.
My current personal goals are to make a successful comeback with no returns to illness and finally get the 200kg total in March.
An DVD with lots of LBH action from the last year is in production, and expect more videos on the LBH team youtube site all year long!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Eating and Muscle

Splendid Specimens: The History of Nutrition in Bodybuilding details the history of eating for muscle, and in way, you can see how the diets of the muscle guys, from old time strongmen to body builders, often pre-date diet trends adopted by the public at large.
I like the caveman, or meat and leaves approach, personally.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Doug Hepburn

Let's follow how Doug trained for the 1953 World Championships in Stockholm, Sweden: He worked out three times a week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Cleans 280 - 2 reps
300 - 2 reps
320 - 8x2 reps

The first clean was made from the floor and second from the hang.

Bench press - regular grip
350 - 5 reps
400 - 2 reps
450 - 5x2 reps

Full squat 475 - 5 reps
520 - 3 reps
550 - 5x3 reps

Snatch 200 - for several reps
240- 2 reps
260 - 8x2 reps

First from floor, second from hang.

Bench press - same as Monday

Squat - same as Monday.

Friday: Entire workout same as Monday.

It was interesting to note that he relied on bench pressing to keep up his pressing power for the Olympic press. His official lifts at the World Championships, which he won, were 371-1/4 press, 297-1/2 snatch, and 363-3/4 clean and jerk.

More on this club-footed champion.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Rest - Pause

High intensity, low repetition, low volume assistance work for power development. Here's one take on the rest-pause method that looks simple and applicable to an assistance work day for a weightlifter.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Multi-Exercise Approach

In direct contrast to the last post about the Dube's stripped down approach to lifting, the great Vasilly Alexeev employed a variety of exercises beyond the competition lifts to build up his muscles and develop his legendary power.

Here's a good source for photos and articles on Alexeev and some other all time lifting greats.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Direct Approach to Olympic Weightlifting Program

By Joe and Virgil Dube.

A pared down approach that eliminates many of the accessory exercises.
A sample:

Drop Snatches, Hang Snatches + Cleans, and Block Work: These exercises are designed for top pull, to hone technical form, and develop quick descent, which to an extent is good training. They are novel and fun to do, but are they actually necessary? We say no, and again we assert ... if a lifter is coached properly on technical form, the actual Olympic lifts can't be beat to teach all aspects of pull, descent, even a solid overhead jerk ... practice makes perfect!
The Dube approach is here.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Article Mine

Here's all kinds of articles on the history of physical culture and muscular development.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Friday, January 18, 2008

FDU Results

The FDU results are posted at the FDU page - here's a direct link to the PDF.
I think there was some truly impressive lifting done at this meet.
Nick Curry does a good run-down of the action on this post.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Video Collection

The Lost Battalion Weightlifting youtube account hosts videos from LBH team members, showing competition and training footage.

Monday, January 14, 2008

2007 Dark Dungeon Open - Snatch footage.

(links deleted offsite)

2008 NYC Meets

Upcoming NYC area lifting meets for your calender:

Mintz Memorial Meet March 15, 2008 @ LBH

Rudy Sablo Memorial May 10th, 2008 @ LBH

Friday, January 4, 2008

Ny Times, what's up?

FDU Meet upcoming!

The FDU meet is on 1/12. Get the info and entry forms here: