Behind the Curtain: an Inside Look into Chinese Weightlifting

Boomer Anderson
March 5, 2019
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Manuel Buitrago, PhD is the Co-Director of Ma Strength. This episode is a deep dive into weightlifting technique, the discipline of professional weightlifters, and the path to mastery.

He just had his own philosophy about how to give you a perfect lift. And so he said that if you can follow the principles of close, fast, low timing, and stable, you can make a perfect lift.

Who is Manuel Buitrago?

Coach Manuel received his honorary coaching credential in weightlifting from Chengdu Sports University in Sichuan, China. He has been traveling to China since 2003 and furthered his weightlifting knowledge by studying and translating Chinese sports science research articles, manuals, and textbooks on weightlifting written by Chinese sports scientists and coaches. Manuel was mentored by Coach Ma Jianping where he learned Chinese weightlifting technique and training methods. He’s furthered his lifting ability and knowledge by traveling to various training bases in China where he trained with professional Chinese weightlifters.

Coach Manuel has taught Chinese weightlifting technique, theory, and programming in China as well as around the world. He has worked with Olympic and world-level weightlifters as well as high-level Crossfit athletes from various countries. His knowledge of Chinese language and culture allows him to bridge language barriers and convey the essence behind Chinese weightlifting methods to Western audiences without changing the content. He has conducted Chinese Weightlifting seminars in Spanish, Portuguese, and is working on Italian translations.

Key Highlights of the Podcast

  • [5:35] Manuel's path to finding Chinese Weightlifting
  • [7:29] The principles behind Chinese Weightlifting
  • [10:55] Quadriceps and their role in technique
  • [12:24] Balance in weightlifting
  • [14:38] How to measure overtraining
  • [16:38] The testing protocols of Professional Weightlifters
  • [18:14] Why flexibility is the most important place to start for a weightlifter
  • [21:48] The ratio of accessory and full movements
  • [26:17] Plotting out a training plan for goals
  • [29:32] Balancing cardiovascular work and weightlifting
  • [31:16] How frequently do elite athletes train vs. the average person
  • [34:04] Using machines vs. barbells
  • [39:17] Manuel answers the final 4 questions

Resources Mentioned

Episode Transcript

Manuel Buitrago
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