My youngest, yet most commited, weightlifter…..

My 7 year old daughter Gwendolyn, or as we call  LG, showed interest in weightlifting at the early age of 1 year old. I remember she did her first snatch at age 1 at Coffee’s Gym in Marietta, GA. In fact, we celebrated her first birthday at Coffee’s gym as well. She’s been in a weightlifting Gym since she was 2 weeks old.

When she was 2 years old I tried to coach her in our garage gym in Eliot ME. My friend David Bruzzi would come on the weekend to lift with us, and one Sunday after the morning session LG started doing “Split Snatches” and said, ‘Daddy look like Bruski”…..I had to ban David from my garage ever since…

I decided to wait until she grew more and exposed her to other sports. In September of this year, she asked me to coach her because she decided she liked weightlifting  more than gymnastics and soccer…of course, I had to ask her if she was sure about it (in my mind I was jumping and saying yes, yes….).

With new lifters, I base the program on the multi-year training in Weightlifting by good old Aleksei Sidorovich Medvedyev which consists of 64 exercises for the first 3 years of training .

The exercises are planned either from below or above the knees using blocks.

The main goal of the first 2 years is focused on mastering the exercises in parts while also executing full movements.

In the old Soviet system, training started in September so this was a perfect timing.

The beginning  of the cycle gradually introduces 23 exercises.  By fiscal Week 40 (of the year, about week 5 of the cycle), we start dedicating weeks to exercises.  For Example, week 40 is dedicated to the snatch; week 41 of the year is dedicated to the Jerk and push Jerks; week 42 of the year Power cleans and full cleans are incorporated. By the end of week 43 (end of October) all 23 exercises are incorporated.

Consolidation of the technique for the exercises come in 2 to 3 months. In November,  Snatch and Jerk workout are planned separately, and in December they are alternated.

We use a technique bar (5 kilos) and plan up to 6 sets with a total of 34 lifts for each exercise. By the end of October, she was able to lift 12 kilos 4 reps x 4 sets. We have used the same weight for C & J. We will not increase the weight for a while (a year at least).

Gymnastics is a great part of the training session as well as short speed drills. Last week in her school, she was able to run non-stop for 15 minutes— which was longer than the boys that play soccer in her class.

Sample work out – snatch:

1.- Power Snatch above knee from block

2.- Power Snatch and Overhead squat

3.- Snatch pull and power snatch

4.- full snatch

5.- Back squat

Sample work out – C & J

1.- Power clean below knee

2.- Power clean

3.- Clean & Jerk

4.-Clean pull to knee

5.- back squat

3 thoughts on “My youngest, yet most commited, weightlifter…..

  1. Jim Moser

    Great job, coach. I love the bottom position in the photo. The lockout is awesome. Looks like you have a future champion on your hands!


  2. Rain Holiday

    A big Hello Fellow Blogger, I am writing from the beaches of Australia. We have had a lot of flooding the last week and I’ve only just been able to connect to the blogsphere. Thanks for the great post. It helped me a lot with my school social studies research 🙂


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