Competition information for newcomers

Competing in Weightlifting is becoming more and more popular. If you are considering getting into the competitive side of Weightlifting, this page has been designed to offer some tips and advice to help you prepare for the competitive side of Weightlifting.

First of all, you must enter a competition in order to be able to compete. If the event is a Weightlifting Wales event (other than the Welsh Open) you will need a Welsh Weightlifting membership, which if you don’t already have, you can get here. To see the competition calendar for Weightlifting Wales, click on the Calendar tab at the top of the page. Some competitions have qualification totals, and you will need to have achieved that total in an official competition to enter. If it is your first competition, you could use competitions such as ‘opens’, cluster competitions or lifting leagues to qualify for competitions such as the Welsh Championships.

Entering a competition

When you fill in the entry form, you must select the relevant weight category for yourself. The categories are as below:

Men 55kg 61kg 67kg 73kg 81kg 89kg 96kg 102kg 109kg 109kg +
Women 45kg 49kg 55kg 59kg 64kg 71kg 76kg 81kg 87kg 87kg +
Boys (Youth) 49kg 55kg 61kg 67kg 73kg 81kg 89kg 96kg 102kg 102kg +
Girls (Youth) 40kg 45kg 49kg 55kg 59kg 64kg 71kg 76kg 81kg 81kg +

You will also be informed on the entry form that by entering a competition you agree to adhere to the anti-doping rules and could be subject to a random drugs test carried out by UKAD during the competition. For more information on this, click here.

When filling in the form you will be asked to declare a total- your ‘entry total’. You should keep in mind that your highest achieved Snatch and opening Clean and Jerk in the competition should total within 20kg of the total you enter the competition with.

Competition Day:

Your coach must hold a valid coaching license with British Weightlifting in order to coach you in a competition, and should bring proof of their license to the venue.

Weigh-in will be carried out 2 hours before your class is scheduled to start (always check the schedule that is released in case of changes). It is advised that you arrive at the start of the weigh-in. You may weigh-in as many times as necessary if you are over or under what you should be, but only within the hour slot and around the other lifters who also need to weigh-in. It is important to note that you must weigh within the confines of this class in order to lift, if you weigh-in too heavy or too light you risk not being allowed to compete, or you may only be allowed to lift as a guest.

What you need during Weigh-in:

–          Passport/ID

–          Opening Snatch and Clean and Jerk

–          Welsh Weightlifting membership card

All under 17’s must weigh in wearing their competition suit (minus footwear and training aids e.g. knee wraps etc)

After weigh-in, you will have an time to refuel, re-hydrate and prepare for the competition.

The Competition:

There will be a presentation of the competitors in a group 10 minutes before the start of the competition.

Weightlifting competitions run in a ‘rising bar’ format, where the bar will only ever increase, so attempts are taken as the weights increase.

Snatch always comes before Clean and Jerk, and there will usually be a 5-10 minute break between the two. You will have three Snatch attempts and three Clean and Jerk attempts, and your best of each will be combined to give you a total off which the rankings are based. The lifter with the highest total wins, and in the case of two lifters having the same total, the lifter who reached this total first would win.

In a youth/junior competition, for example, Gemau Cymru, lifters are scored technical points for their technique during the competition, and winners are based on the lifter with the highest technical points. This is to encourage and promote safe and efficient technique in development lifters.

Three referees will decide whether your attempt gets a white light (good lift) or a red light (no lift). The lifting is either given or failed depending on the majority vote by the referees. The main faults in Weightlifting:

–          Pressing the bar / “Press out” (failing to lock one or both elbows in one swift movement when the weight is overhead)

–          Dropping the bar behind the body before or after the down signal is given

–          Dropping the bar before the down signal is given

–          Moving feet / failing to get the bar under control overhead

–          Pausing in the hang position

–          Making an attempt to Jerk but not completing the movement

–          Not following the bar with hands past shoulder height when putting it down after the signal

–          Failing to control the bar if it goes off the platform after your attempt

–          At any time stepping off the platform during the lift

–          Any body part other than feet coming into contact with the floor during a lift

–          Elbow touching the knees during a Clean

–          Oscillating the bar between the Clean and Jerk

–          Swearing / poor etiquette deemed disrespectful by the referees

–          Not lifting the bar past the knees within the time limit

For the extensive list of technical rules, click here.

What to wear?

There are some rules about what is and isn’t allowed to be worn in competition. It is recommended you check the official IWF rules on clothing during competition, but here are the basics;

The costume/leotard/lifting suit:

• may be one-piece or two pieces but must cover the trunk of the competitor;

• must be close fitting;

• must be collar-less;

• may be of any colour;

• must not cover the elbows;

• must not cover the knees.

You may wear a short sleeved t-shirt underneath the suit but not over the top, and you cannot wear fitted shorts and a t-shirt/fitted top and loose fitting shorts. Under 17’s may wear shorts and T-shirts to compete, but T-shirts must be tucked in.

You may wear wrist supports, knee wraps and a belt, all of which must also comply with the IWF rules on measurements and materials, so be sure to check your equipment in the rules. You are not permitted to wear elbow supports, or have any tape around the elbow joint. Weightlifting shoes must be worn in order to protect your feet and to provide stability. For more information on what you can wear, click here.

What’s in your Kit bag?

What you have in your kit bag is entirely up to you…but here are some tips that can help you be prepared for competition:

–          Lifting shoes

–          Lifting suit

–          Belt/wrist wraps/knee wraps if necessary

–          Tape and scissors

–          Spare chalk

–          Smelling salts if necessary

–          Small towel

–          A jacket / blanket / towel to keep warm between lifts

–          Foam roller / massage ball if necessary

–          Water

–          Snack for between Snatch & Clean and Jerk if necessary (If using a supplement company product, check for Informed Sport certification)

–          ID e.g. passport and TUE form for doping control if either are necessary

These are some of the essentials, you may choose to take other things you feel make you feel more prepared for the competition.

Check the Competition Calendar for dates of competitions coming up

Share with your friends