MESA, Ariz. - So, you want to lift weights like an Olympic weightlifter? One place to get some gold-medal training tips is at Performance One with Coach Joe Micela.
Coach Micela coached a female American weightlifter for the 2012 Summer Games in London. And in Mesa, he trains everyone from kids to senior citizens.
At first, many people think the key to the Olympic lifts -- the snatch and clean and jerk -- is strength. But Micela said that's not the case. Instead, it's all about flexibility.
"If you're not flexible in your shoulders, hips and ankles," Micela said. "You're not going to be able to balance the bar over your head in a full squat position."
This is especially true for the snatch.
"One of the key flexibility things for the snatch, which is one motion from the floor overhead is, can you hold that position as you squat down?" Micela said.
The snatch is a complicated lift. It begins in a standing position. As the athlete's toes raise, the shoulders pull up and the bar is lifted overhead. Then, the second half of the move involves a squat, punch-out and footwork skills.
The clean and jerk is also a complicated lift. The clean begins when the athlete extends the toes, then raises the bar with a shoulder shrug and catches it in a front squat position, with the elbows ending at a 45 degree angle.
The jerk involves a small squat, punch-out, a lunge and finally a recovery step.
If you're interested in learning more about the lifts and Coach Joe Micela, check out is gym online: Performance One.