Power Lifting

Courtesy of Gorilla Pack Power Lifting Club in Johnstown, N.Y.  

Mike Miller, 6'5", 385 lbs.


At a workshop for power lifters at Gold's Gym in St. Petersburg Florida, I noticed one particular athlete having great difficulty with his lifts.  First, he would spend several minutes before each lift trying to find “the sweet spot” between his feet and the ground, where he felt most stable.  Then as he started to lift, I saw that he had great difficulty keeping his right shoulder from rotating forward as he power lifted 500 lbs (the maximum amount he could lift). I also noted a counter clockwise torsion in his thoracic spine as his feet abnormally twisted (pronated).  

Basically, this athlete was having problems because his feet were twisting as he lifted the weights. This resulted in torsional mechanics.  With the athlete’s  permission, I placed a specific proprioceptive insole under his feet, which would decrease his foot twist, which in turn, would take the athlete from torsional mechanics into linear mechanics.  He then repeated his power lift of 500 lbs.

The Result:  

  • (1) He found his "sweet spot" within several seconds (instead of minutes)
  • (2) I saw a more linear motion in his mechanics, e.g. his right shoulder was not as forward, as he lifted.  His foot alignment improved (e.g., less pronation), and
  • (3) he lifted 500 lbs with considerably less effort.


The athlete then immediately increased his lifting weight to 525 lbs and was able to power lift this weight for the first time in his life!  

What does this show?

  • Torsional Mechanics = fatigue, weakness and loss of endurance.
  • Linear Mechanics = power, strength and endurance. 
  • The use of the correct proprioceptive insole takes the athlete from torsional to linear mechanics.

This is just one example of using proprioceptive stimulation to improve linear mechanics and resulting performance

Using Proprioceptive Stimulation to Improve Linear Mechanics and Level of Performance in Competitive Sports
Level of performance in all sports, to a large degree, depends on the mechanical efficiency and linearity of movement. By this we mean the joints in the human body must function around their anatomical neutral position in order to generate maximum power and postural stability. 

A good example of this principle is observed in power lifting (See photo below). The power lifter is concerned with:

  • (1) establishing a solid foot to ground position (e.g., "the sweet spot" where the foot functions around its anatomical neutral position) and
  • (2) preventing any torsion or twisting in his legs, hips or shoulders while lifting (e.g., linearity of movement). If either of these two principles is compromised, the weight lifters level of performance dramatically suffers.