Olympic Lifting Mastery Course by Eric WongUnder Recent Posts, Sports Specific
by Mike Westerdal
Explosiveness, flexibility and strength are qualities that are absolutely essential to success in any combat sport. And when it comes to helping professional and amateur combat sport athletes to develop these skills, Eric Wong is one of the best. He has been a strength and conditioning coach to UFC fighters and combat sport athletes since 2006.
The Olympic Lift is one of Eric’s particular areas of expertise and it is also a core focus of his training strategy to help combat sport athletes develop the explosiveness, flexibility and strength they need to dominate in the fighting ring. Eric knows and understands the intricacies and nuances of this movement like few others—so much so that he has developed an entire program around the Olympic Lift. The program is called Olympic Lifting: The fastest method to becoming explosive, flexible and strong.
Eric has a degree in Kinesiology from the University of Waterloo. He’s not just a ‘book knowledge’ sort of guy though, but a natural-born ‘expertimenter’ who has practiced and perfected each and every exercise that is part of the program. What he presents in Olympic Lifting is what he refers to as his ‘Rapid Master Training Sequence,’ which he says breaks the lifts down into digestible chunks, leading to mastery of the full lift.
The program is presented in three volumes: the Master Manual; the Snatch Manual; and the Clean and Jerk Manual. In going through the program, you start with the Master Manual because this is the one that builds the foundation you need to move on to the two specialized guides. He starts off by providing an overview of his background and, dispels some of the myths about the Olympic Lift and then talks about the importance of having the proper mindset for success.
Next, Eric provides a nice summary of research documenting the many benefits of Olympic Lifting and includes a nice discussion of the science behind the movements. After this, he dives right into the program, starting with a glossary of terms before getting into the basics of Olympic Lifting.
In his next discussion Eric teaches us about the Rapid Mastery Training Sequence (RMTS), which is divided into four phases: the first phase focuses on Fundamental Patterns; the second phase shits to Isolated Movements; the third phase is Level 1 Integration while the fourth phase is Level 2 Integration. By the time you get to the fourth phase you’re pushing yourself towards mastery of the Olympic Lift.
Eric says that by following his training schedule exactly as prescribed and taking one day off between sessions, you can get to the Mastery Stage in less than four weeks. And although that may make the program sound ‘easy,’ it’s not. Just like anything, you only get out of it what you put into it. Fortunately, Eric teaches you everything you need to know to succeed.
Understanding the basic fundamental principles is really the core focus of the Mastery Manual. Here, Eric teaches you how to do the proper mobility movements that will help get your body ready to tackle Olympic Lifts. He also provides a very clear explanation of his training templates. In the next section you learn how to perform his Olympic Lifting Base Strength Program, which will help you build the physical foundation you need to excel in the Olympic Lift.
Once you have gone through the Mastery Manual, you’re ready to move on to the specialized guides. Both volumes are organized in a logical sequence that walks you through the process of going from beginner to master. One thing I want to point out is that I like the way that Eric walks you through every step along the way, emphasizing the importance of following the program exactly as prescribed and not skipping ahead.
He makes it easy by starting with a ‘big picture’ biomechanical breakdown (BB) of the overall movements involved, just so you have an understanding of the Lift. Before getting in to the actual lifting though, Eric walks you through several mobility tests to make sure that you have the prerequisites in place before moving on. Once you’ve ‘passed’ these tests you’re ready to move through the entire RMTS and integrate the Lifts (Clean and Jerk, Snatch) into your sport-specific training.
Throughout all of the volumes, the instructions Eric provides are clear, easy to follow and accompanied by photos. Overall I have to say that I am impressed with what Eric has to offer here and I am happy to recommend his program to any guy who is looking to master explosiveness, flexibility and strength through the all-mighty Olympic Lift.