Reach Outcomes strives to see every one of its athletes reach the pinnacle of their abilities. Our strength and conditioning methods utilize only the most effective and celebrated exercises. With athletes looking to perform at only the highest levels, Reach Outcomes incorporates training methodology from the highest-performing athletes – Olympic weightlifters. We introduce Olympic weightlifting to ensure our athletes are producing the necessary power to succeed in their sport.
When introducing athletes to our Olympic weightlifting program, our immediate goal is to properly develop technique. Regardless of skill level or ability, we begin with the developmental phase, beginning with stabilization. One of the dangers of performing weightlifting in a group setting can be the discrepancies in skill. Not all athletes are on the same level, and these differences can lead to unsafe lifting. We introduce athletes to our weightlifting programming in independent sessions to promote the perfect form and technique.
We’ve broken down our Olympic weightlifting program into 3 steps, in order to make it easier for our athletes to follow along. Keep reading to learn how to lift like an Olympic athlete.
Step 1: Stabilization Training
Throughout the stabilization training of the developmental phase, our coaches’ main priority is establishing flexibility, mobility and postural neuromuscular control in the athlete. While some of our more experienced athletes may join us already exhibiting knowledge of some of these techniques, the stabilization focus is still utilized to finetune each lift and position. As for our less-knowledgeable athletes, detailed training helps them to develop proper techniques.
Step 2: Strength Training
With comfort in movements established, our athletes transition to the strength portion of the development phase. Here, common lifts are introduced to begin building strength. Along with basic routines, parts of Olympic lifts are practiced as well to both improve strength and continue developing technique. However, our team implements these Olympic lifts at lower capacities to create familiarity with these forms. These lifts require the body to perform them with perfect form and a concise usage of all muscles associated. Our athletes of all levels are trained to master these and all lifts are conducted at only 30 to 60 percent of maximum ability.
Step 3: Power Phase
Once a complete grasp of these lifts is reached, our athletes move into the power phase. This demanding yet rewarding phase focuses primarily on the Olympic lifts to increase every athlete’s physical ability and power output. By increasing an athlete’s power output, their ability to perform in the demands of competitive competitions is increased substantially. Backed by the strengths acquired in all previous phases, our coaches transition training to the sport-specific phase to improve performance. Our team identifies key techniques for each sport and applies these to places where power output has increased. Throughout this process, Olympic lifts are still present, but loads are much lighter as the aim is to maintain strength and performance, not build it. More so, our coaches identify Olympic lifts that are most relevant to an athlete’s sport and ensure these are practiced more often.
With similar goals but unique demands and abilities, our team crafts personalized training plans for every athlete. These plans are ever-changing, like our athletes, fluctuating between three and four sessions per week and, with various phases, change in demand and intensity.
One of the defining characteristics of Reach’s strength and conditioning program is our usage of RPE, or rating of perceived exertion, to determine the demand an athlete will experience. This measure, unlike a typical percentage of max ability system, determines athletes’ power outputs based on their physical responses. These responses can vary from anything between practically no exertion, similar to a comfortable walk, all the way to max effort, which is consistent with very short increments of exercise and shortness of breath. As a team practicing a holistic approach to athletic performance, Reach welcomes this system due to its ability to signify the body’s entire response to a workout.
Throughout the entire Reach strength and conditioning program, our coaches look to adapt and enhance every athlete’s experience. These changes include altering the usage of Olympic lifts entirely, if necessary. While the strength-building portions of these workouts are highly important, our team recognizes that many of the stances associated with these workouts are uncommon in actual competitions. Our team identifies every athlete’s ability in all lifts and, if needed, adjusts techniques and workouts to encourage more beneficial lifts. Reach Outcomes is determined to foster the whole athlete and does so by ensuring every maneuver is the best.