[quote author="davan" date="1228523429"]
1. I didn’t clarify, but should have. There are multiple ways to look at maximal, even within olympic lifts. Maximal load, maximal power, maximal bar speed can (and often are) separate.
That was the way I understood the question. My point is that if maximum loading (by the kilo/pound) is not possible for technical reasons you can still benefit if training is mechanically correct and the program is focused properly.
In my own training, I will perform a power snatch workout as follows (load in kilos):
60/3 x2 (W/U)
If technique breaks down at maximum (90+ kilos) then you limit the exposure to the maximum lifts. Athletes can still touch on that intensity but should be careful that the majority of their training falls within loading ranges where they can maintain proper technique. With time they will be able to be more consistent at higher loads (insert irrelevant milo reference here). How much time? Depends on the athlete and program.
2. Many olympic lifting specialists who have years of experience are incapable of maintaining great technique throughout truly maximal attempts (heck, there have been tapes of pros that have questionable technique on heavy powercleans and similar lifts), yet the 1rm results (along with hopefully the video analysis of the performance) from competition gives a basis for some training ideas for the next season. Can the same not be said of an athlete that uses variations of the lifts for another sport?
The same can be said. My point is that relative to sport performance, the max lift performed improperly tells you less than the submax lift performed properly. This is where the argument of “the athlete is not a weightlifter” absolutely makes sense. It is not an excuse for poor performance.
3. What about the psychological aspects of knowing a 1rm or having an objective measuring stick for performance in an area of training? Some athletes respond better to having a specific number goal than others. While this does not justify unsafe or unintelligent practices, it is something to consider when developing a program.
What exactly is a 1rm? Maximum what? Technique maximum? No. Speed maximum? No. Loading maximum? Yes.
This is not always the case but here it is only a representation of maximum weight. In my opinion, there’s nothing very objective about it, again, unless you are a weightlifter.
I think you should consider the max as a specific goal but also consider the fact that form broke down on the lift. Assuming that is being taken into consideration in designing the future program, and not that the video is being used as a showcase for good testing performance (with a freeze frame pic highlight reel style), and you have yourself an argument.[/quote]
I agree with much of what you say here except your response to number 2.
A maximum lift performed poorly tells me more than a lift performed properly. Errors, give you more information than no errors and this is especially true in maximal or near maximal effort where focus, drive, motivation, etc… are crucial to performance. Just like at how looking at which direction the bar goes on a missed HJ tells me more about the jump than I can ever glean from video of a made attempt at the same height.