on February 7, 2011
My interest in Olympic Weightlifting began at the old age of 38 when I read Rippetoe's Starting Strength. I started doing power cleans using Rippetoe's `Triple Extension' methodology. Basically, I power cleaned by literally jumping, shrugging and catching the bar, per Rippetoe's instructions.
I purchased Everett's book as my interest in the sport grew. My hybrid training protocol eventually morphed into full-time weightlifting. I dropped all traditional bodybuilding isolation exercises, including the `RULER' of all exercises in every gym across America - the bench press. (I hope you sensed a little sarcasm in the last statement.)
Rippetoe is a great STRENGTH coach; but he is NOT an Olympic Weightlifting coach. I had to unlearn the bad habit of `triple extension' when I started training the Everett way. I learned that there is no jumping in weightlifting. I also learned that one does not need to actively shrug the bar to elevate it as high as possible. Everett is one heck of a writer, and he does an excellent job explaining in great detail how to gracefully accelerate huge amounts of weights overhead and successfully get under the bar with finesse.
The only thing better than this book is the DVD. (And the only thing better than this book and the DVD combined is a qualified Olympic Weightlifting coach.) My coach is a competitive weightlifter and his training principles and methodologies are more or less in line with Everett's book.
Olympic Weightlifting is poetry in motion. Although the Olympic lifts are natural movements, they are extremely technical. And because the lifts are explosive by nature, it is difficult to learn them in slow motion. This book is a great reference for aspiring weightlifters. It is also a great manual for coaches and trainers. If you have no access to a qualified coach, this book is a must.
PS. Think twice before you try to learn from self-proclaimed weightlifting coaches on youtube. If you want to remove all doubt and learn the lifts safely, correctly and quickly, just buy this book!
on October 24, 2008
I picked this book up since I collect weight training
books. Most books about competitive weightlifting tend
to be repetitive of one another and this one is no
different. The approach and intent of the book is
reminiscent of Bill Starr's "Defying Gravity", the
teaching methodology seems directly derivative of Mike
Burgener's, the programming sections appear to be
modified from the writings of Lyn Jones, Artie
Dreschler, and the old Soviet training manuals. Some
of the technical analyses suffer from Mr. Everett's
lack of experience in weightlifting, in coaching
lifters, and seemingly in applied anatomy as
occasionally what is presented in the text doesn't
jive with basic physics and physiology. So the content
appears to be a re-hash of other authors' works and
represents an incomplete understanding of science
related to lifting.
The book does have its strengths. A novice coach or
lifter can learn to function in the gym and in a low
level competition from reading and applying the
materials in the book. It may actually be better at
accomplishing this end than the USA Weightlifting
coaching manuals. But lifting coaches know that that
is not a large achievement. And this observation
provides a fairly sad commentary on weightlifting
coaching resources in the USA - a new lifter and coach
with 3-4 years of experience has produced an average
quality compilation text that is better that the
teaching manual used by the national governing
organization for the actual sport.
If you are a lifting geek like me, the book is a nice
addition to the bookshelf. If you are absolutely new
to the sport, either as an athlete or coach, and if
there are no experienced coaches near you, this book
will be helpful. If you are looking for new
information or an authoritative work by an expert, its
I bought this book based on the great reviews and a general interest in adding basic olympic lifts to my training. I didn't have aspirations of being a competitive weightlifter, but wanted to perform some power cleans and power overhead movements with a modicum of looking like I know what I am doing.
There is a dearth of information on olympic lifting on the internet, much of it conflicting, so I felt a book was the only choice to get what I needed. And what I got was more than I expected. I am well read on strength and conditioning, but never before have I seen a lifting text both so technically thorough and easy to digest. The closest thing I can compare it to is Mark Rippetoe's excellent Starting Strength. In particular, I was blown away by the most thorough explanation of the mechanics of olympic style back and front squatting that I have ever seen. Many weightlifting coaches gloss over the squat choosing to expound upon the quick lifts, and most of the thorough writings on the squat concern the low bar and powerlifting oriented versions. But here Everett covers every facet of stance, body position, bar position, method of execution, and correction of form for the high bar squat imaginable before even mentioning a clean or snatch. And when he does get to the Olympic lifts, the real meat of the book, he presents them in a detailed format of progressing from simple bar drills to performing the full lifts themselves in such a manner that even an individual with just a video camera can acquire good technique.
Flexibility, nutrition, assistance exercises, and programming are covered later in the book. While they could be mere afterthoughts to the information presented on the lifts, Everett gave them enough attention to warrant a read from a lifter of any level. This book is a bargain and must have for anyone remotely interested in Olympic lifting, even if it's just doing some power cleans as a training adjunct.
on July 29, 2015
This book is no joke. Not only is it heavy duty, it's packed with information.
I started this book like I would any textbook. Greg Everett does a great job of outlining everything that is entailed in Olympic weightlifting, from the equipment that is used, gear to wear like sleeves, wraps and weightlifting SHOES (i had no idea), ways to tape and chalk up, and safety straps and belts.
What I really like about Everett's guide are the sections on technique and development. There are plenty of options to read up on, depending skill level and training desires of the lifter. There is weight gain, classic lift and a Bulgarian program as examples.
I'm not gonna lie, the idea of weightlifting is a tad intimidating . However, using this book properly, much information is given that is eases my anxiety a bit. Everett provides a whole sections on how to correct lifts. There are so many pictures of proper technique so one can identify what would constitute a proper lift and what wouldn't .
The education continues on through the nutrition section where weight and supplements are covered. Everett even goes on to cover the training one must take in order to begin competition. Like I said, this book is packed with information. I never like going into situations unprepared, especially ones where there is a potential for injury, but I feel that Everett really created a guide to help coach a weightlifter to were they would like to be.
on July 26, 2015
With this book Everett has done a great job of compiling essential information for the beginning weightlifter, coach, or both. "Olympic Weightlifting" contains all the information one needs to begin their career as coach or lifter but advanced lifters or experts should look elsewhere for new groundbreaking details. The book begins with sections talking about the foundations of lifting and the common positions. Each lift has pictures of what you should be doing and how to do it. It's a fairly large book and each different concept is explained in great detail. Everett makes sure to mention error correction and how to fix your form to avoid injury and improve awesomeness. Everett then goes on to talk about how to train, program, and schedule your weightlifting. He even includes sample programs if you need somewhere to start before creating a customized program for yourself. The author even goes so far as to cover flexibility / stretching for weightlifters which is an important, but often ignored, topic. The book ends with a short section on competing (for the serious athlete) and has helpful information on how to lose (or gain) weight for a weigh-in. Good resource for lovers of lifting.
on July 28, 2015
I bought this book on Olympic weightlifting for my brother, who is interested in weightlifting as an athlete. I had heard good things about this book, and I picked up the second edition when I saw it on Amazon. One great thing about this book is its size. It is big! It is large, with a good amount of photographs and readable instructions on each page. I appreciated this size, and I’d love for more exercise books to come in such a large size. The book begins with a section on Foundations. I love it when books contain this information, and this book has a very strong and effective foundation section. The book continues with a section dedicated to different types of Olympic weight lifting, such as the snatch, the jerk, and so on. The book even has a chapter on error correction, which I think is so helpful. The book also contains section on programming and training as well as supplemental exercises and flexibility. The book also provides information on competition, which I know my brother will appreciate. I really enjoyed this book, and my brother did too. I would definitely recommend this book!
on June 5, 2013
Greg Everett does a fantastic job breaking down movements to make Oly lifting simple to understand. With all the "Crossfit experts" out in the world it's easy to get misguided and caught up in the bs. Thank you for making a book like this. There is some hope for society.
on June 3, 2014
I like this book but as I read through it I found myself skimming some parts and completely jumping others. I understand the want to relay all things to the reader but unless you have the accompanying DVD it's long and sometimes mind numbing to read through and try and picture exactly what he's describing. Don't get me wrong, I feel this is a very good book and as a trainer myself when I explain something I try to go over all that can happen as well, but I still found it a little long winded. The description and thorough explanation is good but can overwhelm a person who is completely new because Greg breaks down not just the lift, but the individual steps. For example, the jerk goes over stance width, grip width, bar grip, shoulder placement, body position, elbow postion, and shoulder postion once it's recieved at the top, and then the front squat because that's the position you'll be in when you finally catch it etc. Now all that is a good thing in that it covers all the bases but sometimes it feels like there's just too much for a complete rookie to think about when you finally get to the lift yourself. Over time I'm sure it will become second nature like driving, in that when you intially learn to drive they're telling you in the handbook before you even begin, "check your mirrors, find your seating position, hands at 10 and 2, stay 1 car length away from the car ahead of you, ease on the break, how to execute a point turn, all the road signs' meanings, etc., and then when you know all that you can insert the key and turn on the car.". As you read all that you're like "wait, what?" I haven't even picked up the keys (the bar) or sat behind the wheel yet. But like driving it has to cover everything because olympic lifts are more technical than a simple bench press or squat so I do get it. Personally I'd recommend this book with the DVD and together you'll get the complete 5 star package. We are a visual people nowadays and when it's presented in text alone it's a little much, but with vebal and visual presentation you can grasp it all that much easier. In the end I give the book alone a 4 out of 5. It's a very good book and a great buy for the price.
on October 19, 2011
From my perspective:
- I've been doing Oly lifts for about a year.
- I've been coached in Oly lifts for about 6 months
- I'm a mechanical engineer
- I'm fit (5'8", 160lbs, squat 355, deadlift 465)
- I'm a beginner at Olympic lifting (clean and jerk 215, Snatch 155)
- This is the only book I've read on Olympic lifting (and it will probably be my last).
So that's my perspective. This book is pretty much everything I hoped it would be. Everette breaks the lifts down in detail and provides exercises to help you master each step of the lift. There's also exercises to help you combine the various steps of the lift. Everett explains the various steps and what each step's ultimate purpose is. Knowing this really helps you understand what you are doing and why you are doing it. This knowledge really helps you perform the lift correctly. A lot of the trouble I was having before reading this book was due to improper understanding of the lifts.
I think the Everett achieves a good balance of providing detail without providing too much detail. There are plenty of pictures to illustrate his points as well.
It's an easy 5 stars.
on October 7, 2014
I bought this after buying Starr's The Strongest Shall Survive because the descriptions of the lifts in that book (specifically the power clean) were not adequate to convince me I wasn't going to hurt myself. This was perfect, laying out in exhaustive detail exactly how to perform the lifts, troubleshoot your form, and avoid injury. If you aren't anywhere near a gym where you could be instructed personally, this is a great way to learn the forms. Mostly geared towards competitive Olympic lifting (obviously) but with sufficient detail on the power clean and the squat that I don't feel my money was wasted.