Bob Takano is a highly respected weightlifting coach who was inducted into the USA Weightlifting Hall of Fame in 2007 for his contributions to coaching. He has been the coach of four national champions, two national record holders, and 27 top ten nationally ranked lifters. Bob has been on the coaching staffs of 17 U.S. National teams to international competitions, five of those being World Championships and the Summer Olympics. His lifters have competed in seven Olympic Trials with one, Albert Hood, the third American to snatch double bodyweight, earning a berth on the 1984 team.
Bob is also on the teaching staff for the USAW Weightlifting Coaching Education program and presents his own seminars as well. He also has his own gym, Takano Athletics, at 6036 Variel Ave., Woodland Hills, CA 91367.
We enjoyed recording this episode with our friend Dr. Andy Galpin.
Weightlifting Problem Solving
Bob Takano grew up as the only Asian kid in a Mexican neighborhood. He got into weightlifting because he was small and weak, and he needed to get strong and big to gain respect and maintain a certain status in the community. Takano was one of the first Asian-Americans pro athletes, and today he’s excited about teaching and coaching weightlifters thanks to never ending problem solving opportunities.
- To fix your butt wink when you squat — Try weighted straight legged good mornings with light-moderate weight at the end of your workouts. That should help increase your hamstrings range of motion.
- Favorite accessory exercises for weightlifters — Weighted single leg jumps, consecutive frog jumps, and split snatches and cleans. Those exercises are great for learning how to stretch out and contract efficiently, increase foot speed, and how to break under load with feet apart.
- Power snatches and cleans are recommended for kids instead of full snatches and cleans. It’s safer for kids to strengthen their ligaments at full range doing squats instead of super explosive movements.
- Communicating the meaning and importance of the type of training, programming, and exercises is crucial for getting athletes motivated.
- Cultivating confidence and courage in athletes comes from thinking how to lift the weight, not what’s under the bar.
- The little things are important and they go a long way. Being on time, registering for competitions, etc. all influence an athlete’s character and performance.
“What’s under the bar is a distraction. The meet is a distraction. Your competition is a distraction. Where you’re going to place in the meet is a distraction. The only thing that is going to help you lift the weight is thinking about lifting the weight.” — Bob Takano
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