Weight Lifting Lesson Plan

Instructor: John Hamilton

John has tutored algebra and SAT Prep and has a B.A. degree with a major in psychology and a minor in mathematics from Christopher Newport University.

This lesson plan will teach your students about weight lifting. They will actually participate in a hands-on weight lifting activity that will allow them to attempt the lifts they are taught.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, your students will be able to:

  • Explain how to do two popular weight lifting exercises
  • Explain how to execute two helpful exercises that utilize body weight only
  • Recap important safety techniques to consider when lifting weights


1 to 1.5 Hours


  • Bar for pullups and chinups
  • Internet access
  • Weight lifting barbell
  • Weight lifting plates

Key Vocabulary

  • Chinups
  • Deadlifts
  • Pullups
  • Standing Rows
  • Weight lifting belts
  • Weight lifting gloves

Curriculum Standards

Please note that each state has different standards for physical education. Please consult your state's standards to ensure proper alignment.


  • Let your students know they will be learning about weight lifting.
  • Ask them if anyone has knowledge of weight lifting techniques or has actually lifted weights.
  • Review the key vocabulary terms.
  • Note that, in our related Physical Education Weight Training Lesson Plan, we studied the bench press, squats, lunges, pushups, situps, bicep curls, and tricep curls. Therefore, those exercises will not be covered in this lesson. We will cover deadlifts, standing rows, pullups, and chinups.


  • Let your students know they will be performing some actual weight lifting exercises.
  • Divide up your students into pairs.
  • Before starting, explain to your students these pointers about safety:
    • Perform the exercises with a barbell and no weights first, and then add light weights later. Don't worry about trying to impress others with how much weight you can lift. Remember that sports injuries can stay with you for many years.
    • Many weight lifters utilize belts and gloves to assist them.
    • It is very important that your pullup and chinup bar is solid and will hold your weight. For example, some bars are made to fit in doorways, so tug on them first to make sure they are firmly in place.
    • When doing deadlifts, it is crucial that you keep the back straight, not in a hunched over position.
    • Concerning the standing row: While for some people it will be possible to raise the bar all the way to the chin, most fitness experts recommend stopping at chest level.
    • The internet contains many helpful videos that further detail proper form to assist in avoiding injuries.


To do a proper deadlift:

  • A) Stand close enough to the bar so that your toes are actually underneath it and past the bar by a few inches.
  • B) Place your feet roughly shoulder width apart.
  • C) Grip the bar at just more than shoulder width.
  • D) Bend down and grab the bar. The palms should be facing toward you (overhand grip).
  • E) Rise up with the bar until you reach the standing tall position, with the bar resting at the thighs.
  • F) To complete the repetition, lower the bar by flexing your knees as well as hips.

Standing Rows

To do a proper standing row:

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