CFP's In-House O-Lifting Meet: A Primer

Let’s talk about Olympic lifting! The Snatch and the Clean & Jerk are the two most technical lifts ever--so much so that it is it’s own sport. They’re fun. They’re tough. They’re satisfying. You all work very hard at getting better at them both in and outside of class. We want to give you the opportunity to test the skills you’ve gained

On Saturday, July 23, CFP is hosting our first ever in-house Olympic lifting meet to give anyone interested a chance to try it out. This is purely a learning experience, meaning most of the competitors will have never done it before so you will be among great company. Because it is a learning experience, you don’t need to worry about getting special equipment just for the competition. Your regular shoes and workout clothing will do! We want this to be as accessible as possible.

What should expect at the competition? How does it work? What do you need to know before starting? All excellent questions. Here we go:

Olympic lifting meets generally done in kilograms. That means that both bodyweight classes as well as barbell weights are all in kilos, which can be very confusing for us ‘Muricans that still use the whackadoodle Imperial system. For this meet, the bodyweight classes will be in kilos but the barbell weights will be in pounds, as CFP’s plates are pounds. With that out of the way, let’s talk about what actually happens.

In weightlifting meets, competitors are classified by body weight and compete against the others in their body weight class. You can find a comprehensive list of the weight classes here. All lifters compete in both the Snatch and the Clean & Jerk. The heaviest of each successful lift are combined for a total score. The Snatches and the Clean MUST start from the ground but may be received any way: muscle, power, or full squat. You can also power or split the Jerk. So if you are worried about receiving the Snatch in a full squat, stop it already. The Snatch event takes place first followed by the Clean & Jerk after a brief intermission.

The order of the lifters is determined by their first weight attempt. The competitor who chooses the lightest weight goes first. The barbell is loaded incrementally and progresses to heavier weights throughout the competition. Because of this, if a lifter misses a lift, they may retry that same weight but may not decrease. Each lifter has 3 attempts to perform their heaviest lift possible. If and when a tie occurs, the competitor with the lower body weight wins. If competitors are in the same weight class and tied, the competitor that lifted the total weight first wins.

Each lift has 3 judges: one head judge and two side judges. The three together decide whether a lift is successful or failed. Two successes are required for the lift to count. In a true meet, the judges decision is registered via a lighting system: white lights for successes and red for fails. In our competition, we will use the “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” method. Because we’re professionals. And also we don’t have a light system.

This may seem like a ton of info (hahaha, lifting puns) but fear not! This is meant to be a fun learning experience for you! We’re here to help and guide you through this. If you are at all interested in seeing where you are with your Olympic lifts, challenging yourself to get our of your comfort zone, or experiencing something new register for our In House Olympic Lifting Competition here! You won’t regret it!

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