Our Favorite Men’s Lifts From the 2017 Chinese National Weightlifting Championships

The 2017 Chinese National Weightlifting Championships came to a conclusion today. This year’s competition was held over the span of two weekends, with the women competing April 8-11th and the men April 15-18th.

These championships act as a qualifying tournament for the National Games in September. This year had some epic lifts by some of China’s best weightlifters, so we thought it was only fitting to compose a list of a few must-see videos. If you haven’t been following this year’s Championships, then check out our top four highlights below.

1. Tian Tao’s 221kg Clean & Jerk

Tian Tao is one of China’s best 85kg lifters (if not the best) and took second at the 2016 Rio Olympics behind Iranian weightlifter Kianoush Rostami (the current 85kg clean & jerk record holder). Tao’s recent 221kg clean & jerk is an unofficial world record, and is building our belief that he has what it takes to stay consistent in future competitions.

2. Lu Xiaojun’s 164kg Snatch

Lu Xiaojun is arguably China’s best 77kg lifter and took gold at the 2012 London Olympics and silver at the 2016 Rio Olympics. He’s the current world record holder for the snatch and total for the 77kg weight class. This year he finished first at the National Championships and did so by only hitting around 90% of his competition maxes (164kg snatch and 196kg clean & jerk).

3. Shi Zhiyong’s 160kg Snatch

Shi Zhiyong is a 69kg lifter and rivals Liao Hui when it comes to putting up impressive lifts. He claimed first at the 2016 Rio Olympics and finished first at this year’s National Championships, while Hui came in seventh. His finals lifts were a 160kg snatch and 185kg clean & jerk.

4. Liao Hui’s 150kg Snatch

Liao Hui is known for his epic strength and currently holds every world record in the 69kg weight class. Hui also won first at the 2008 Beijing Olympic games. His 150kg attempt shown below doesn’t come close to his current max and world record. You can tell by the way he turns to look at the scoreboard while the lift is overhead.

Why So Light?

The top 16 from each weight class make it to the Chinese National Games in September. In an interview shared by wlift84 on YouTube, Lu Xiaojun, Liao Hui, Chen Lijun (current 62kg world record holder), and Tian Tao all talk about their training and performances and this year’s Championships.

The video is in Chinese, but the abbreviated translation sums up that Xiaojun, Hui, and Lijun all weren’t training at full capacity. Their goals were focused on enjoying the competition and qualifying for the National Games in September, which they all did.

These lighter attempts leave us to wonder and speculate what lifts these elite weightlifters will be pushing when it comes game time in September.

Feature image from @jianpingma Instagram page. 


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Jake holds a Master's in Sports Science and a Bachelor's in Exercise Science. Currently, Jake serves as one of the full time writers and editors at BarBend. He's a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and has spoken at state conferences on the topics of writing in the fitness industry and building a brand. As of right now, Jake has published over 1,100 articles related to strength athletes and sports. Articles about powerlifting concepts, advanced strength & conditioning methods, and topics that sit atop a strong science foundation are Jake's bread-and-butter. On top of his personal writing, Jake edits and plans content for 15 writers and strength coaches who come from every strength sport.Prior to BarBend, Jake worked for two years as a strength and conditioning coach for hockey and lacrosse players, and was a writer at the Vitamin Shoppe's corporate office. Jake regularly competes in powerlifting in the 181 lb weight class, and considers himself a weightlifting shoe sneaker head. On the side of writing full time, Jake works as a part-time strength coach and works with clients through his personal business Concrete Athletics in Hoboken and New York City.