Adaptive Athlete Competition Requirements


An athlete must have a disability “defined by the ADA as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment.”1

Athletes must meet a minimum qualification total equal to 50% of the qualification standards set by USA Weightlifting.

Athletes must reasonably complete the competition lifts, the snatch and the clean and jerk i.e. the snatch and the clean and jerk must be fully locked out overhead and dropped when given the down signal.

Athletes are responsible for informing the meet director and officials of their need for accommodation.

Meet accommodation:

If you have a disability and need specific accommodation not listed below please email the meet director (local) or USA Weightlifting (national) with requested modifications.

Meet directors must make reasonable accommodation for participation of athletes with disabilities.

Deaf or hard of hearing:

  • Coaches will be allowed out of the coaches’ box to stand behind the referees during the athletes lift to sign or signal coaches’ cues
  • Athletes may request a more robust down signal by the center referee
  • Coaches may give the down signal once the referees call is visible

Blind or visually impaired:

  • Coaches may walk athletes on stage to assist with the start of the lift
  • Athletes may request a more robust down signal by the center referee


  • Athletes may perform single arm snatches and clean and jerks
  • Athletes may perform single leg snatches and clean and jerk


  • Seated lifts may be contested
  • The clean and jerk may be altered to a clean and press. The press must be fully locked out and completed in one fluid motion.