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Angelo Bianco the Gangsta and more Broz-isms: Update Number 3 on Pan Ams 2017
Yesterday I watched one of those moments in sports that will be talked about for many years to come. Angelo Bianco, coached by John Bro, competed in the 77kg Class. Originally he was on the reserve list. James Tatum suffered a slight injury, so he was forced to withdraw. That opened the door for Angelo to compete, and he made the most out of the opportunity.
Throughout life all of us are dealt different opportunities. There is one thing that separates the great from the not so greats, and that is taking advantage of those opportunities. Angelo took advantage of his opportunity. Angelo ended the Snatch session in 4th place, and that’s when it got a little crazy.
He was sitting in 5th place going into his last Clean & Jerk. That’s when he took a 6kg jump from 182kg to 188kg. I was in the front row with my heart pounding. Lifters are put in these situations many times, but not many are able to capitalize. Angelo stuck the Clean, and the made the lift with a hard fought Jerk. The venue went crazy as he locked in Silver overall and in the Clean & Jerk. Yes that means a guy that thought he was just going to be watching as an alternate got the call to lift, and he stepped up and ended with a silver medal. Unbelievable!
My man Harrison Maurus ended his first Senior International competition with a Bronze Medal in the Clean & Jerk with a massive 186kg. Did I tell you that he is only 17-years-old? Harrison and his amazing coach Kevin Simons are always a pleasure to hang out with. Kevin and I spent every night talking about weightlifting, life, and coaching. Every time that I am around Kevin I learn new thing, or our conversations spark my brain to think more on a topic.
If you are a weightlifting coach, my prayer is that all of you will one day get the chance to coach during a Senior International competition. There were so many discussions between the best coaches in America. I mean in the same room we had: John Broz, Sean Waxman, Kevin Doherty, Kevin Simons, Tim Swords, Cara Heads Slaughter, Pyrros Dimas, Mike Gattone, Greg Everett, and many more. It was impossible not to learn new things unless you’re an idiot. We all agreed that this is the best part of coming to these events.
Then there is hanging out with my man Bill and meeting his family. I also got to meet Harrison’s grandparents. This is the stuff that makes weightlifting so awesome, and I hope all of you coaches reading this get the chance to see it first hand.
I want to leave you guys with a couple more Broz-isms that I picked up from my roommate John Broz. This guy has an uncanny ability to make complicated matters seem very simple. Let’s look at two of them:
1. Power or Skill- when it comes to programming for a lifter, there are two elements that must be considered: power and skill. Most lifter either has massive amounts of reserves in the power department like Nathan Damron, and therefore they need work in the skill department. The other scenario is a lifter like Tom Summa who has all the skill but lacks in the power department. Obviously the focus should be on power output. Programming is a simple as that. The goal is to move the lifter closer to the center.
2. Lifter Paradigm- when one begins the sport of weightlifting, they see it as simply picking a barbell up off the floor and putting it overhead. Then they are introduced to biomechanics, physics, Chinese programming, and Russian programming. Then things get really complicated. This lasts for many years, and then finally something clicks and you are right back to picking a barbell off the floor and putting it overhead hence the lifter paradigm. He said that while we were at lunch one day, and I was so jealous that he said that and not me.
There’s more to come, but I will try to rap things up in an article tomorrow. I have so much to tell all of you about my night hanging out with Pyrros and Mike Gattone. Talk about a thrilling moment for me! I was hanging out with my favorite weightlifter of all-time talking shop, comparing squat numbers, and listening to a three-time Gold Medalist talk about what he did wrong. I mean could he have really been better? Mind Blowing to say the least! I have to say that I am pleased with the direction of USAW. This staff is truly amazing. Great job Phil Andrews!
Now I am off to coach Nathan Damron in the 94A Session. It’s funny how much more nervous I get while coaching versus than I did as a lifter. He’s looking good though, so I am sure that he’s going to do well. Go Team USA!!!
Nathan lifts at 7p tonight, and you can tune in here: ⇒ http://www.teamusa.org/usa-weightlifting/live