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View Full Version : How do I get started in Oly lifting competitions?


Michael Abbruzzese
10-04-2011, 09:46 PM
I've been competing in powerlifting competitions for over 3 years now, and it couldn't be simpler. You find a meet within whatever geographical range you are willing to travel either by checking the listings in Powerlifting USA Magazine or checking the meet schedules on powerliftingwatch.com. Then you send in an application form along with a membership application to whatever organization is sanctioning the meet. The hardest part is showing up and lifting.

I think I'm ready to try my hand in Olympic lifting, but finding a meet to attend or even a gym to train in is giving me problems. If I understand it right, instead of the dozens of powerlifting associations one can lift in, there is only one Olympic lifting association in this country: USA Weightlifting. You become a member with them, then associate yourself with a USA Weightlifting gym/coach then somehow become privy to a local meet in which to get your feet wet. Is there any way to find out about amateur unsanctioned meets that are more appropriate for the first-timer? Especially a beginner that is training on his/her own?

The big question is: How does one get started in competitive Olympic Lifting, procedurally speaking?

Geoffrey Thompson
10-05-2011, 05:05 AM
You don't necessarily need to be associated with a team/coach, and the web site does list meets.

Greg Everett
10-05-2011, 09:45 AM
Michael -

Yes, all weightlifting is sanctioned by USAW - there is only one US federation. In order to compete, you do need to be a USAW member, which you can become on their website here (http://weightlifting.teamusa.org/membership-services).

Like Geoffrey said, you don't have to be a member of a club - you can lift unattached.

One way to find meets is to find your LWC (http://weightlifting.teamusa.org/club-lwc-local-info/lwc-info) and get in touch with them about meet schedules. Many of them will keep their own websites with meet schedules or in some way publish the info.

You can also find meets on the USAW site here (http://weightlifting.teamusa.org/events) and sort by state/region. Your LWC might have meet info up sooner than USAW.

According to USAW rules, you don't need a singlet for your first meet, but some meet directors require it, so make sure you check the entry form. It's smart to just get one anyway - you can lift in shorts and T-shirt, but depending on the judges/director, this can wind up being more work than just getting a singlet.

John Alston
10-05-2011, 10:00 AM
goheavy.com/forums/olympic/ - while an ancient styled forum, can be a good place to post a "hey know any gyms in (this part of the country)?" and get some responses if you have no luck with Greg's links.

Michael Abbruzzese
10-05-2011, 04:00 PM
Thanks for the feedback. I'll do my research. And a singlet isn't a problem: I've been powerlifting raw.

Daniel Morgan
10-10-2011, 01:30 PM
I've been practicing for some years, but I don't think I'll ever get to that level, so please let us know how it works for you, It'd be great to hear from you when you become a pro and when you're part of this. http://www.olympic.org/weightlifting
It'd be also cool to see photos of yourself in there eh.. Good luck! Keep it up, the sport world needs more people like you!