Powerlifting is One of the Favorite Sports of Weightlifters

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Updated: Aug 18, 2023
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Powerlifting, an offshoot of Olympic weightlifting, emphasizes sheer strength more than technique, flexibility, and speed. Developed primarily in the United States and England, powerlifting attracted weightlifters who believed Olympic events placed too much emphasis on technique over raw strength. In 1965, the first national powerlifting championships were hosted by the York Barbell Company and sanctioned by the Amateur Athletic Union. The event took place in York, Pennsylvania. Another milestone occurred in 1971 when the first world powerlifting event was conducted in York. That same year, the International Powerlifting Federation was formed.

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Although the sport of powerlifting has had issues with the use of performance-enhancing drugs, the use of artificial lifting aids, and divisions among numerous federations, it has become more widely practiced in the United States than Olympic weightlifting. It’s been dominated by Americans since the sport’s inception.

Powerlifting consists of three main competition lifts. The first is the barbell back squat, where the top of the lifter’s thighs must drop parallel to or below the ground, demonstrating lower-body strength. The second is the bench press, which requires the lifter to lie in a prone position on the bench, lower the barbell to their chest, pause, then press the barbell upward on command. This movement demonstrates upper body strength. The final lift is the barbell deadlift that requires the lifter to hinge at the hips, place their feet shoulder-width apart, or wider if preferred, grasp the barbell, and then pull it off the floor until instructed to lower it back. In a powerlifting meet, athletes follow the commands of a referee. For a squat, the lifter is given two commands: “squat” and “rack”. The lifter must reach the appropriate depth, move the weight back up, and then “rack” it, standing upright with knees locked and motionless.

The commands for the bench press are as follows: the first is the “start” command telling the lifter to unrack the bar and lower it to their chest. Next, they get the “press” command once the bar is motionless on their chest. The final “rack” command is given once the lifter’s arms are straight and the bar is motionless. For the deadlift, the lifter only receives a single command, simplified as “down”. This command is given when the lifter has reached the top of the deadlift lift.

The athlete that will be analyzed is a 21-year-old male college powerlifter. The athlete stands at 6’1’’ and weighs 225. This would put him in the 100-kilogram weight class. He has been weight training since 2015 but he didn’t start his powerlifting career until college. This athlete has been participating in power lifting for about three years now. Starting his freshman year of college and now heading to a close of his 3rd year as a college powerlifter. This athlete has made many achievements in his career by winning his weight class in multiple meets. Also, by winning multiple meets his freshman year in the 100-kilogram weight class.

This athlete’s success has been influenced by a few factors. His commitment to his training and diet have helped him achieve his success in his sport. His work ethic in the weight room has helped him to continue to progress in adding to his total. Also, with some help from mom and dad on his good genetic makeup he been able to continue to win in his weight class.

This power lifter is still in the beginning of his career and has many differences compared to someone at the elite level of his sport. One of the main things being experience this lifter is still learning how to perfect his main three movement. Whereas the elite power lifter has perfected his craft. The elite power lifter also has more training time under his belt. Some of these athletes have been training for over 10 years or even 20 years for the sport. My athlete has only been training for powerlifting for about three years now. If he were to be compared to someone such as Larry wheels who has been powerlifting since 2010 and has also set 2 world records in different weight classes. As time goes on my athlete can achieve the status of an elite powerlifter. He can achieve this status if he continues to keep his work ethic high and continue to commit to his training and diet.

In powerlifting two energy systems are going to be used when training for the sport. The main energy system that will be used for the sport and for its training is the phosphagen system. This system will be the main pathway for the sport of powerlifting because it is high in intensity and short in duration. The ATP is stored in myosin cross bridges is broken down for energy in muscle contraction. This leaves two by-products after ATP breakdown ADP and Pi. PC is then broken down by creatine kinase into Creatine and Pi. The breakdown of PC allows ADP and Pi to rejoin making more ATP. This new ATP can now be broken down to release energy. This energy system will mainly be used for power events like your strongman competitions or powerlifting or even Olympic lifts. The next energy system used will be glycolysis. This energy system will be utilized during an offseason from powerlifting. Now we need to discuss how glycolysis actual works and what happens during this process. Glycolysis is the metabolic pathway that turns glucose into pyruvate. The free energy in this process is turned into ATP or NADH. Glycolysis also has two subdivisions; these are fast and slow glycolysis. 

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Powerlifting is one of the favorite sports of weightlifters. (2022, Nov 09). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/powerlifting-is-one-of-the-favorite-sports-of-weightlifters/