What Are the Olympic Lifts?

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    • Olympic lifting is a competitive sport and part of the Summer Olympics. It is the only form of weightlifting recognized by the Olympics.

    Clean and Jerk

    • There are two types of Olympic lifts. The first is the "clean and jerk," a two-part lift in which the bar is hoisted from the floor to the shoulders, then thrust over the head.


    • The second type of lift is the "snatch. The bar is hoisted and thrust over the head in a single motion.


    • Olympic lifts involve lifting as much weight as possible. When judged in the Olympics, athletes have three attempts to lift as much weight as possible. The two highest numbers for these lifts are added together for a score.


    • Technique is important. Lifters must use proper form when being judged, or the lift will not be credited.


    • Olympic lifts also are done as a form of exercise. They build strength, explosiveness, flexibility, balance and technique.

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