Rules and Regulations of WeightLifting

The Lifts:

The Snatch is a single movement where the lifter holds the bar in a wide grip, lifts the weight off the ground overhead in one movement, then stands upright holding the bar overhead.

The Clean and Jerk is a two-part movement. First, the lifter holds the barbell in a shoulder width grip, then pulls the weight up to the shoulders and then stands up with the barbell balanced on the shoulders.

Once settled, the lifter will snap the bar overhead and stand upright again with the barbell in control overhead.

Once the lifter is in control, the judges will give the “Down” signal and the lifter will lower the bar.

The Weights:

The Bar itself is a standard. Women and under use a 15Kg bar which is a slightly smaller diameter than the standard 20Kg bar used by all men.

The Barbell is loaded with Disks (Plates) of various weights. A combination of the international standard of 25 (Red), 20 (Blue), 15 (Yellow), 10 (Green), 5 (White), 2.5 (Red), 2 (Blue), 1 (Green), 0.5 (White) Kilogram disks to set the barbell at a certain weight, are used.

The barbell will be loaded with the minimum number of disks required to total the required weight.

In addition, collars must be used to tighten on the ends of the barbell to keep the weight disks attached. The standard collars are 2.5 Kg each.

The Competition:

Each lifter is given three attempts at each of the Snatch and the Clean and Jerk.

First, all lifters in a session will complete all three attempts at the Snatch. Then, after a 10 minutes break, all lifters will take three attempts at the Clean and Jerk.

The Total of the Best Snatch and the Best Clean and Jerk determine medal or trophy placement.

Each lifter competes with other lifters in their own weight class but in most sessions, a few weight classes are mixed. In Open events, both Weight Classes and Age Classes are often mixed.

Youth lifters are under 17 years old, Junior Lifters are under 20 years old, Seniors are Open and Masters are over 35.

The weight on the barbell only goes up! All lifters who are attempting a certain weight complete their attempts before the other lifters attempt higher weights.


Three Judges watch for incorrect features of the lift to separate a “Good” lift from a “Bad Lift”.

Here are the basic items judges look for:

  1. No part of the lifter (except the bottom of the feet) shall touch the platform.
  2. The Lifter cannot “press out” the barbell. Press out is when the elbows are bent and the lifter uses strength of the arms to lock out the elbows.
  3. The lift must be all in one continuous movement – no stopping and restarting.
  4. The elbows must not touch thighs or knees during the Clean. This is dangerous and can cause serious injury.
  5. The Lifter must hold the bar steady and be motionless between the Clean and the Jerk.
  6. The Lifter must hold the bar steady and motionless in all parts of the body overhead with feet inline with the plane of the trunk until the judges give the down signal
  7. The Lifter must guide the bar down at least below shoulder level when the lift is complete. Dropping from overhead is dangerous and an incorrect movement.
  8. The Lifter must remain on the platform during the execution of the lift.