I found some great explanation on Outlaw’s website that is much more articulate and easy to understand than anything I could spit out in support of olympic lifting and why we are all getting so awesome at life. They refer to an article within their post…I’ve linked it below.
“The Olympic lifts simply do more to teach the productive application of force than any other strength and conditioning movements known to man. Productive application of force leads to speed with heavy things – speed with heavy things leads to what Louie Simmons calls “Dynamic Effort.” Dynamic effort leads to huge strength gains (when coupled with Max Effort days – anyone recognize that?) because the faster you get with lighter weights; the stronger you get with heavier weights. Which is basically… The productive application of force. I’ll leave you with that for today, and post a link to the article: “Defending Olympic Lifting Movements for Athletes, Strongmen, and Powerlifters“
Here’s some highlights:
* The mere practice of the Olympic lifts teaches an athlete how to apply large amounts of force. Part of the extraordinary abilities of an Olympic lifter arises out of his having learned how to effectively activate more of his muscle fibers more rapidly than others who aren’t trained to do so. This becomes extremely important for athletes who need to remain at lower body weights for athletic purposes but need to learn how to apply greater force. Olympic lifts will help build force development without producing unnecessary hypertrophy, which could even tighten the athlete up and make him or her slower.
* The practice of proper technique in the Olympic lifts teaches an athlete to apply force with his or her muscle groups in the proper sequences (i.e. from the center of the body to its extremities). This is a valuable lesson that can be of benefit to any athlete who needs to impart force on another person or object. Olympic lifts are great teachers of intra-muscular coordination. The ability to produce much force at the right time is something that’s invaluable for athletes.
* Athletes learn to receive force from another moving body and become conditioned to accept forces.
* Athletes learn how to master the stretch shortening cycle. The lifts essentially teach how to move from an eccentric to concentric muscle action very rapidly.