Para Powerlifting

Paralympic Powerlifting


Powerlifting; the ultimate upper body strength test. The Bench Press is the single discipline of this sport, which is participated in by males and females who have one or more of the following impairments or physical disabilities (please see Para-Powerlifting Rules for extensive list):

  • Loss of Muscle Strength Leg: Loss of strength in a hip, knee, ankle or foot that impacts on the ability to stand.
  • Impaired passive range of movement
  • Limb Loss or Deficiency Leg: Single amputation above the ankle joint.
  • Leg length difference (minimum difference 7cm)
  • Short Stature (Less than 145cm Males, less than 140cm females)
  • Hypertonia, Ataxia, Athetosis Hypertonia (Spasticity, Rigidity or Dystonia), Ataxiaor Athetosis that leads to impairment in function in lower limb.
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Lower limb amputation
  • Poliomyelitis

Those wishing to compete in Powerlifting must meet the criteria set out by the World Para-Powerlifting rules which can be found here.

Powerlifters compete in weight categories, there are 10 for males and 10 for females; from 49kg-+107kg for males and 41kg – +86kg for females.

Weightlifting Wales  is the National Governing Body for powerlifting. It is also Wales’s affiliate with the International Powerlifting Federation.


To perform a bench press a lifter lies supine on a bench and the bar is supported on racks behind the lifter’s head. The bar is taken from the racks at arms’ length, when the referee signals the lifter to start, the bar is lowered to the chest, held motionless at the chest and pressed back to arms’ length with equal distribution between both arms. The athletes are given three attempts and the winner is the athlete who lifts the greatest number of kilograms.


Please follow link to IPC Rules and Regulations:

Please click here


Each athlete is classified as eligible or not eligible based on whether they meet the minimal disability criteria. To test the minimal disability criteria classifiers observe athletes as they perform a range of movements. They test for muscle power, coordination and range of movement. They also measure the length of the athlete’s lower limbs.

Eligible athletes are divided into ten weight categories based on gender. Females and males compete separately.

There are also opportunities to become a Coach and Official within Powerlifting, for further information please contact Weightlifting Wales.

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