Vladimir Safonov’s Olympic Weightlifting Seminar Recap
My weekend with Vladimir
On December 17th and 18th, I attended Vladimir Safonov’s Olympic weightlifting seminar. In case you’re wondering who that is, he is the coach of the Russian women’s Olympic Weightlifting team. One of his lifters is an Olympic gold medallist. The prospect of spending 10 hours a day lifting with him made me ecstatic—and also slightly nervous.
As soon as I got a barbell in my hands, those fears dissipated. There is no better place for me than on a platform lifting. After a quick intro and warmup, the next 3 hours were dedicated to barbell technique work. That’s right! 3 hours with nothing but a barbell and I loved every second! The next 7 hours were dedicated to light pulling work with different lifts involving the snatch, the clean, and the jerk. Along the way, Safonov made technical adjustments to everyone’s form, including yours truly. But once those changes were made, and the pattern was ingrained, my lifts felt like they hadn’t in a very long time. Safonov was clearly prepping us for an intense second day.
Day 2; what can I say about day 2?! We spent more time with full versions of the classic lifts, and those of us that showed good form on the first day were encouraged to go heavier. And did we ever… It was a seriously savage day. Safonov really pushed us with the movements. Complexes, pauses, and squatting were the theme of the day. At the end of it all, we got to sit down and learn directly from him through a Q and A.
Looking back at the weekend, it was easy to see why I ended up waking up the most sore I’ve ever been that following Monday. But it was totally worth it! Getting the chance to work with someone at that level, who values technique so highly, and who understands how much just half an inch of adjustment makes was an absolutely incredible experience. It has made me a better athlete and a better coach. I look forward to sharing all of my newfound knowledge and information with all of those looking to learn more. Approach me, or come join me in a Six Lifts or Olympic weightlifting class.
See you on the platform!