Weightlifting is a sport that uses resistance to build strength, power, and endurance in a variety of ways. Weightlifting can be separated into two categories: Olympic weightlifting and powerlifting.

Olympic Weightlifting

Olympic weightlifting is the sport of lifting an athlete’s own bodyweight or any object that weighs less than their bodyweight.

Objects such as barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, sandbags, and even the human body itself are used in this sport.


Powerlifting is similar to Olympic weightlifting except objects heavier than the athlete’s bodyweight are used instead of their own bodyweight.

Joining an Olympic Level Weightlifting

There are three main types of movements in Olympic weightlifting: the snatch, jerk, and clean & jerk. The snatch is when the lifter receives a barbell from the ground, pulls it to his chest quickly and then raises it above his head before lowering it under control back to his chest for a repetition. The jerk is when the lifter receives a barbell from overhead or from the ground with both hands before raising it above his head for an explosive repetition. The clean & jerk is when the lifter starts with one hand on each end of a barbell held at chest level then lifts with both hands.