Meanwhile in Belarus …
2008 Olympic champion and still snatch world record holder Andrei Aramnau is back to training after a long hiatus packed with injuries.
He started posting regular videos, sharing his training and giving tips.
Thanks to Sergiy Turchyn (@sergiywl) on insta for letting me post his translations here (see posts below).
Translated Notes from Sergiy:
How I became Olympic champion?
I was born on April 17, 1988 in Borisov, Belarus. My first childhood memories are when at I saw my future wife take her first steps. We know each other since childhood.
Even before going to school I loved fishing. This was the only reason to ever skip training. My family was not rich. We lived near a railway station, not a very safe place. Most of my childhood friends are either in prison, alcoholics, or drug addicts. I got very lucky to become an athlete instead. I was a strong boy. At 9 years I was already chopping wood. Viktor Groda, 2 times USSR medalist, who lived in my building, took me into a weightlifting gym. I wanted to be strong and handsome like him. Never became as handsome.
At 10 years old I started training. I was strong, but my technique was bad. I say that I know all technique mistakes in weightlifting because I went through all of them myself. I think I had all possible technique problems in my life. In 14 years I started training very seriously. I was always the first to come and the last to leave. I was kicked out for staying too long. There was nothing to do at home. My friends already started with alcohol and drugs, I wasn’t interested in them. I came to tarin at 3pm and left at 9. I almost never skipped training.
At 14 I reached Master of Sport. Then I was noticed and started training for U17 Europeans.
When I was born I had 6 fingers on my hand thanks to Chernobyl. Coach gave me an ultimatum: to train for Europeans I had to cut off the finger. At 14 years old I was very scared, but I went by myself to Minsk to cut it off. Because my parents were not able to get me back from the hospital, I escaped by myself.
Then I started breaking all the records. I broke many records, probably about 500 records total, including all the children ones. I broke 10-15 records each competition. I set 27 records in the Olympics as a junior. At 19 I won WWC. At 20 I won the Olympics.
I am a person who likes science. I always fixed my technique using scientific principles. I watched other athletes to learn about human movement. For those with technique mistakes I advise to watch others and try to imitate them.
Here are some notes from early Andrei Aramnau videos. I still haven’t seen the recent ones.
Future plans: 2 months ago got back into training. Already lifted 160+180. He feels that can still compete. This year is for recovery. The main goal is 2019 European Games [Note from Sergiy: I don’t see weightlifting in the program]. After that he will see how everything goes.
- 2 herniated disks at 19 years old, went away completely because of this back exercise. When you have back pain, do it
- 3-4 times a day. Otherwise, once a day is enough for injury prevention. The first 3 minutes seem easy, then it gets harder. 5 min is enough.
- Big knee problems at 14 years old. Since then every day Andrei does knee extensions. 4 sets of back extensions and knee extensions every day. Boring, but important.
After Olympics started getting quad problems. Always wanted to break records and got small muscle tears, that finally resulted in quad tears.
Got hip problems later on. Andrei stopped training in 2014 because he thought he is done. But then one day he wanted to show technique to an athlete and realized that pain is gone. In 3 years of no training (he is 29 now) everything seems to be gone, so he started again.
If you miss more than 3 days of training, you will start getting weaker. Andrei got sick recently, so missed 4 days. He recommends to wait a little longer after antibiotics, but started training himself because he still wants to win medals.
About bench press: thinks it is useful, but not too much. Too much bench results in forward jerks.
In training, after heavy sets Andrei does one final lighter set, so that muscles remember the easy feeling and not the heavy feeling. Muscle memory is important.
Pull up record: 16 times in 18 years old. On average about 10 times when in good shape.
Regarding YouTube channel, Andrei asks for any kind of help/advice since he is new to YouTube and Internet in general. If anyone can help with the channel, would be great.
Bodyweight: 112.4 (after 3 days of sickness)
Athletes most often miss snatches in the bottom. The way to fix it is simple: work on the bottom position. Sit in the bottom longer. Do overhead squats after snatches. Get shoulders strong in this position.
All kids of presses are also good. Shoulders and elbows are very important in the snatch.
However, if you work on bottom position too much, you can get Bursitis that will make your knee unable to bend properly. Work on the bottom position, but don’t go too crazy about it. Everything in moderation.
Correct second pull is very important. The bar should only touch the body at the second pull point. Friction slows down the bar. The second pull should be very short and powerful.
Brace yourself in the starting position. Bad starting position – everything goes wrong after that. The goal is to make legs and back do all the work. Do not pull with your arms. Back becomes less rigid and second pull becomes less explosive [Shows the straight vs bent finger stability].
Don’t retract scapula. It should be relaxed. Nothing should restrict the bar motion during the explosion. Damping effect will make the second pull weak. Only back and legs are used at the same time.
If you have muscle imbalances, use correct technique and correct muscles will have to be used.
Because of leg problems before, Andrei doesn’t hold the bottom position. People with weak shoulders should not take him as an example.
In the clean you want to catch above the very bottom and use the bounce. In the snatch you catch as low as possible.
Back extensions: one exercise, but can get 2 different effects. Before training it is warmup, after training can be used for back strength. Same applies to leg extensions.
Long warmup is very important. Spinal cord has glands that after 40 min of training start producing some hormone that strengthens our muscles and bones. That’s why 1 hour training sessions are too short and can only be used to maintain strength, but not increase it.