How I Got Started in Competitive Powerlifting (Athlete Journal 1)

Powerlifting Records: What Are They?

The word “record” has been used a lot lately in sports. You see it everywhere nowadays. People are talking about them all the time and they want to know what exactly do these things mean. Well, let’s answer your question now! Powerlifting records are the official marks set by athletes competing at the world level in weight lifting competitions. These records are very impressive and are considered one of the most difficult feats to accomplish.

What Is A Powerlifting Record?

In order to understand what a powerlifting record actually is, it helps if you have some basic understanding of how weight lifting works. Weight lifting is simply the act of putting something heavy onto your body through your own strength or physical ability. For example, you could lift a dumbbell up to your chest with just your arms alone. However, doing so would not make you strong; it would only result in you gaining mass which means less muscle and bone density. Similarly, when someone lifts a barbell over their head, they are using both their arms and legs together to push the weight upward. These types of lifts are known as Olympic Lifts. Power lifting is the act of using your strength in just one movement to push weight up as high as you can. Power lifters wear safety gear and compete barefoot because this activity can result in serious injury if done incorrectly. Power lifters all have their own style and unique way of lifting but the most common method is to bend at the waist, keep your back straight, and push upward with all your might.

How Is A Powerlifting Record Set?

There are three different events in which people compete: the bench press, deadlift and squat. Each event is scored in different ways but this does not mean that one event is more or less important than the other. There is no such thing as a less or more important exercise when it comes to power lifting because ALL of these moves work different parts of your body.

Bench Press: The bench press is the simplest of all the events. It consists of lying on your back on a bench and pushing a weighted bar off your chest until your arms are straight.

Deadlift: The deadlift event is similar to the lift used in Olympic lifting but instead of pulling the weight to your hips, you pull it up as high as you can reach. This exercise is the most physically demanding.

Squat: The squat is done by standing with a weighted bar across your shoulders and bending your legs until your hips are lower than your knees. This move works the largest muscle groups in your body and is one of the hardest lifts to master.

What Makes A Powerlifting Record So Impressive?

Anyone can go to the gym and try to lift the heaviest weight they can. In fact, you may do this yourself on a regular basis. However, power lifters only compete with their peers and this is what makes their records so impressive. Let’s say that you can dead lift a thousand pounds. This is an incredible feat on its own but if you were to enter a competition and compete against other heavy lifters then you would probably place very low. This is because there are plenty of power lifters who can lift over two thousand pounds; the world record is currently at six thousand, one hundred and eighty-one pounds. This just goes to show that in a competition, you’re only as strong as the person you’re competing against.

Furthermore, power lifters are always looking for ways to improve their records. If you’re able to lift a thousand pounds then you’ll always be able to lift that thousand pounds.

If you’re able to squat three hundred pounds then you’ll always be able to squat three hundred pounds. This is because power lifters all have their own individual strengths and weaknesses, just like everyone else.

Sources & references used in this article:

Endocrine responses to overreaching before and after 1 year of weightlifting by AC Fry, WJ Kraemer, SE Gordon… – Canadian Journal …, 1994 – NRC Research Press

The final frontier of anti-doping: A study of athletes who have committed doping violations by T Engelberg, S Moston, J Skinner – Sport Management Review, 2015 – Elsevier

Anabolic steroids: the gremlins of sport by T Todd – Journal of sport history, 1987 – JSTOR

A biomechanical analysis of the squat between competitive collegiate, competitive high school, and novice powerlifters by WM Miletello, JR Beam… – The Journal of Strength & …, 2009 – cdn.journals.lww.com

The effect of six weeks of squat, plyometric and squat-plyometric training on power production by K Adams, JP O’Shea, KL O’Shea… – Journal of applied sport …, 1992 – elitetrack.com

Gender-and height-related limits of muscle strength in world weightlifting champions by LE Ford, AJ Detterline, KK Ho… – Journal of Applied …, 2000 – journals.physiology.org