Olympic Lifts Part 1- Rate of Force Production

This post stems from the previous post, “Intro: Olympic weightlifting”.  There are many bodily factors that contribute to the Olympic lifts being completed.  In my last post, I mentioned 3 that we will talk about.  The first is “rate of force production”.

Becky Hines Personal Trainer Salt Lake City Utah Gym Jones, NASM, CrossFit

The rate of force production, or rate of force development (RFD) is simply how quickly you can apply the most force possible within a movement.  Force is the body’s ability to recruit and initiate muscular contraction.  This is the single most important element for strength training.

Increases in muscle stiffness, increases in tendon stiffness, changes in muscle fiber type, and increases in neural drive in the early phase of a movement likely all contribute to increases in rate of force development with training.  Explosive exercise can be defined as movements in which the rate of force development (RFD) is maximum or near maximum for a given type of muscle action (such as the Olympic lifts).

Greater ability to produce force means greater ability to act upon an external load (weights for example), greater ability to control the body in space, and greater ability to maintain efficiency with higher-repetition sub-maximal efforts.  This is one reason why Olympic lifting enhances all aspects of your fitness.  Get at it!


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