The Colombian Program

In the last 15 – 20 years Colombia has become to be a very powerful and strong country in weightlifting. Winning a Gold medal in Sydney and Silver in Beijing in addition to have world medalists (Junior, Senior)and top ten finishers in any major competition.

How a country with so many problems due to drug traficking, a never ending guerrilla problem and taking hostages has become a profitable industry could have done it. In spite of all these problems the Olympic movement has grown a lot to a point it became a cultural thing. When visiting Colombia in March of this year for the south American games the taxi driver of the cab my family and I took told us that he was going home early because he was going to take his children to the weightlifting competition that afternoon and right after they were going to watch wrestling.

Our cab driver knew the names of most lifters from Colombia and their bios. The next days his schedule was to take his children to Fencing and Beach volley.

Now how can Colombian Weightlifting achieve this recognition from its people (in the USA common people as we know assume weightlifting is powerlifting). The government and it sports ministry has a lot to do with it. In March Colombia invested $ 140,000,000.00 (US Dollars) to benefit  Olympic sports and due to its success a lot of it was directed to weightlifting. The central government and local governments along with municipalities have different systems of taxation to get the money i.e. in Bogota (capital of the country)every telephone line (land line or cellular) pays a tax to benefit  sports.

They have hired Bulgarian coaches, Cuban coaches and also have a growing number of coaches who study 5 years to get a degree in Sports and/or weightlifting.

Weightlifting is coached in many public schools where kids train twice a day, if the do well they go to a local weightlifting school which is very well organized. They do get incetives: when they complete two weeks of training they are given a snack, after 1 or 2 months a little stipend to pay for their transportation, when they are ready to compete uniforms, shoes, etc. Keep in mind a lot of these athletes come from extreme poverty.

An under 15 year old lifter that does well and has competed internationally starts to get a monthly stipend of about $ 300.00 (US dollars) and it increases when the lifter improves. The national senior team is an all professional one. Its members make a living out of weightlifting.

They train 11 times a week and usually their loading is high.

Their system follows the following model (by age group):

Age        11-13                                       Basic instruction                                           Gymnastics, track and field ,etc

Age        13-16                                      Instruction-Sports schools

Age        17-20                                     Construction I                                                  Junior Competitions

Age        21-22                                     Construction II                                                 National medals

                                                                 Advance training                                             South American, central American, Pan American

                                                                 National team                                                    competition and medals.

                                                                 Elite                                                                       Olympic, world medals.   *****

There has been cases where a junior lifter has achieve the Elite level i.e. leydi Soliz.

Planning and loading management;

Their macrocycle is divided in 3 periods:

1.- General preparation 4/6/10 reps

2.- Special preparation 2 x 2, 2 x 3 reps

3.- Competitive preparation 2 x 1 reps

10 reps -30kgs of best lift, 6 reps -25 kgs of best lift, 4 reps -20kgs of best lift, 2×3 – 15 kgs of best lift, 2 x 2 – 10 kgs of best lift, 2 x 1 best lift

Weekly program

Monday

AM

Clean & Push Jerk

Hang Snatch

Power Jerk behind neck

Front Squat

Snatch Pull

PM

Snatch

Hang clean

Jerk behind neck

Back Squat

Clean Pull

TUESDAY

AM

Power snatch

C & J

Push jerk behind neck

Front squat

Snatch Pull

PM

Snatch

Power Clean

Jerk behind neck

Back squat

Clean Pull

WEDNESDAY

Clean & Push jerk

Snatch

Push jerk behind neck

Front squat

Snatch pull

PM

C & J

Hang Snatch

Jerk Behind neck

Back Squat

Hang clean pull

THURSDAY

AM

Clean & push jerk

Hang power snatch

Jerk behind neck

Front squat

Snatch Pull

PM

C & J

Hang Snatch + Pull

Push Jerk

Back Squat

Clean Pull

FRIDAY

Power Jerk & Push Jerk

Hang Power Snatch

Jerk behind neck

Front squat

Snatch Pull

PM  Max-out

Snatch

C & J

Push Jerk behind neck

Front squat

Clean Pull

SATURDAY

AM

Jerk from rack

Hang Snatch

Clean & Push Jerk

Back squat

Clean Pull

PM and Sunday rest

Now this is product of research, many interviews, translation of documents.

Ivan Rojas

 

 

 

 

4 thoughts on “The Colombian Program

  1. Manuel Buitrago

    Hey Ivan,

    I have a few questions about the program.

    1) What is the difference between a push jerk and power jerk?

    2) given the macrocycles you described, does it mean that 4/6/10 during the general phase each week for every movement? For example, looking at the first Monday workout, do they do 4 cleans+4push jerks, then 6 cleans+6 push jerks, 10 cleans +10 push jerks? Or is it 4 reps on week 1, 6 reps on week 2, 10 on week 3? Seems like a lot of volume to do a set of 10 cleans or a set of 10 hang snatches…

    Thank you in advance.

    Reply
  2. CCLLCC

    Ooohhh man… there’s SO MUCH BULLSHIT in all this; I’m not attacking you, Mr. Rojas; whom I’m attacking is the poor, disorganized, lying, amoral people who told you, Mr. Rojas, about this supposed colombian methodology for the children and the youngsters. Truth is THERE IS NO METHODOLOGY OR ORGANIZATION AT ALL. There are disputes between coaches and leagues, INDERs don’t have no structuration when it comes to “ages groups”, there are no methodologists (and if they do, they are completely useless), no technical comitees, no “well directed training at schools”, no “incentives”. If the boys get something, is because their own coach takes out money from his own wallet. Yes, almost all of them (the young lifters) come from poverty. In some leagues, and under certain parameters (e.g. Bogotá’s League) they’re given food and money for transports. But in some others, they are handed with ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. Many of the coaches are just lifters that retired, and they don’t have graduate careers in sports, so they don’t know shit about teaching, learning, motor skills, sensitive periods, physiology, nor anything. They don’t have any “Basic Instruction”; they’re just handed a broom stick, and then a bar, and then loads… tons of loads, tons of heavy c&j’s and snatches, and competition, and hard preparation. There’s no multilateral preparation, there’s no “Construction”, there’s just “Ok… you seem to have talent in this. So you say you are 10?Then go grab a bar. Train. Compete”. And that’s why there are lost talents, and that’s why we just have Salazar and Figueroa as olympians, but many junior and subjunior world champions. There is no integration between leagues. MONEY IS BEING STOLEN by dirty directives, presidents and politicians in many state/government organizations. There’s so much envy, idiocy, and CORRUPTION. There are so many uneducated coaches, hired by the leagues, because ignorance has deep roots in here (they think that a good retired athlete means a good coach -absolutely no professional studies in the field) and there’s so much “rosca” (favors being paid by politicians or directives to certain persons: corruption). There is no planing. Bulgarians or Colombians… that doesn’t matter anymore. There’s the talent, the future champions, but the leaders are lacking order, wisdom, intelligence, education, and INTEGRATION.

    Reply
  3. CCLLCC

    Ok, I missed something: Salazar and Figueroa are not the only olympians in weightlifing. I forgot to mention Mosquera and Urrutia.

    Reply

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