Boris Sheiko about The Bulgarian Method
Q: What is your opinion on the Bulgarian methods? According to which you should lift maximal weights.
A: First thing we need to address is that Bulgarian methods were developed by Ivan Abadjiev in Olympic weightlifting, what now is suggested to be implemented in powerlifting. It is a very peculiar topic, which is discussed online a lot. I am baffled that there are people who support these methods. I personally was a member of two junior sport training camps of USSR and Bulgarian teams. First training camp was in January 1986 in Tsakhadzor high in the mountains at the sports facility not far from Erevan. After 24 training days Bulgarian team invited us to Varna Olympic weightlifting center, where we spend 24 days as well. Our head of the team was Leonid Ivanovich Zhabotinsky twice Olympic champion. During training camp our athletes were training twice a day plus morning warm up before breakfast. Bulgarian weightlifters trained three times per day plus morning warm up. Yes, Bulgarian weightlifters more often tried weights of 90% or more. You could tell that their technique wasn’t perfect while going for such big weights. Our trainers after each set explained and gave comments on the technique. Bulgarians didn’t do that. For them it was the completing the required volume what mattered. Basically could athletes meet the planned volume or not. And it was the main goal. We witnessed once how an athlete couldn’t get the 5 required sets at 95%. He did 2 and the rest 3 he was doing for an hour, struggling to snatch the bar. It was interesting to discuss his methods with Ivan Abadgiev and he honestly confessed that lifting 90% and more can be possible only if all the recovery conditions are perfect. And we saw during gathering that Bulgarian team had personal doctor, 2 masseuses, perfect pharmacology, which he was bragging about and told us that they(Bulgarians) are ahead in pharmacology compared to USSR. That’s why I am really surprised of talks to use Bulgarian methods, especially use it on athletes who need to go to school, work and go to the gym afterwards. I think Bulgarian methods can be partially used only at training gatherings. Where an athlete won’t think about school or work, but only about training and will be properly recovering. Only upon conditions of having good rest, diet and pharmacology will athlete be able to use Bulgarian methods.