Om Yun-chol (56kg, North Korea) Attempts World Record Clean & Jerk at Summer Universiade

The 2017 Summer Universiade is in full swing, and that means some of the world’s top young weightlifters โ€” including a packed American squad โ€” are competing this week in Taipei, Taiwan. The event is a multi-sport competition for athletes enrolled in college or university to compete on the international stage.

Among them is 56kg weightlifter Om Yun-chol of North Korea, the 2012 Olympic Gold and 2016 Olympic Silver medalist in his weight class. Yun-Chol is one of the world’s premier clean & jerkers and currently holds the World Record in his weight class at 171kg, which he did at the 2015 World Weightlifting Championships in Houston, Texas.

In fact, Yun-chol is one of only a handful of weightlifters in history to successfully clean & jerk three times their bodyweight in competition. (Check out the full list here.)

At the Universiade, Yun-chol once again attempted to eclipse that mark with the 172kg clean & jerk attempt (embedded below). He finished the snatch portion of the event with 129kg, good for a new Universiade record in that lift, and easily locked up gold overall with successful clean & jerks at 155 and 165kg. (Again, good for new Universiade records in the clean & jerk and total.)

Check out his heaviest snatch and clean & jerk attempt below (note: click on the arrow to the right to see the clean & jerk attempt in the Instagram embed).

It’s a valiant attempt, and one of the heaviest cleans ever made on stage for anyone near Yun-chol’s bodyweight, but a successful jerk just wasn’t in the cards today. Yun-chol is still just 25 years old, so we’re fairly certain we’ll see him take another crack at his own clean & jerk world record in the future.

Featured image: @atginsta on Instagram

David Tao

David Tao

BarBend's Co-Founder and Editorial Director, David is a veteran of the health & fitness industry, with nearly a decade of experience building and running editorial teams in the space. He also serves as a color commentator for both National and International weightlifting competitions, many through USA Weightlifting.

David graduated from Harvard University and served for several years as Editorial Director/Chief Content Officer of In addition to his work in the health & fitness industry, David has been a writer for Fortune and, as well as a contributor to, Slate, and numerous other outlets across the web and in print. He's especially passionate about the intersection of strength sports and quality, professional media coverage โ€” overlapping interests shared by the BarBend editorial team and which drive their content strategy each and every day.

David is a proud Kentucky native. In his free time, David is a voiceover actor and can be heard in animated films, independent shorts, music videos, commercials, and podcasts.

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