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Olympic hopeful Derrick Johnson breaks American weightlifting record

This weekend, Olympic hopeful Derrick Johnson broke the Senior American snatch record at the 2014 Hassle Free Open weightlifting competition. Johnson is USAW's youngest-ever head coach for an international competition and one of the United States' top pound-for-pound weightlifters.

Derrick Johnson coaches barbell club at Paradiso CrossFit in Venice, California
Paradiso CrossFit

Competing at 62 kilograms (~136 pounds), with a 122 kilogram snatch (~268 pounds), Johnson surpassed his half-brother Darrel Barnes' previous American record of 121 kilograms. Barnes' previous record had been in the record books for just under two months.

In addition to his Olympic training, Johnson coaches at Venice Barbell Club inside Paradiso CrossFit in Venice, California.

When teaching Olympic lifts to athletes, Johnson focuses his cues on three major weightlifting techniques:

  1. Focus on keeping your chest up and back flat the duration of the lift.
  2. Not bending the elbows until finishing the extensions at the top.
  3. Make sure the feet slide (no jumping) in the catch position on the Olympic movements.

With a new American record to his name, fans should look forward to seeing Johnson take the weightlifting platform at the 2016 Olympics.

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