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Kettlebell Lifting

The sport of kettlebell lifting (also known as Girevoy Sport or GS), is a weight lifting sport performed with kettlebells, a traditional Russian cast iron weight that looks like a cannonball with a handle, used to perform all types of exercises. The aim of this sport is to achieve the highest number of repetitions or the heaviest weight lifted in a given period of time.

Kettlebell lifting as a sport started in Russia, where it is most popular. It has recently spread throughout the world, and where it is a popular form of weight training exercise.

Kettlebell lifting competitions typically involve three main lifts: the snatch, the clean and jerk, and the long cycle. In the snatch, the athlete lifts the kettlebell from the ground to overhead in one continuous motion. In the clean and jerk, the kettlebell is lifted to the shoulder before being jerked overhead. In the long cycle, the athlete performs multiple clean and jerks without putting the kettlebell down.

Unlike Olympic Weightlifting or Power Lifting which is about the maximal weight lifted, in kettlebell lifting competitors have to lift a submaximal weight and perform as many repetitions as they can in a 10 minute time frame.

performing a kettlebell snatch athlete performing a kettlebell snatch

Competitions are often organized by weight class, gender, and skill level. The athlete who completes the most repetitions or lifts the heaviest weight within their category is declared the winner.

Kettlebell lifting has gained popularity in recent years as a form of functional fitness training, and many athletes and fitness enthusiasts incorporate kettlebell training into their workout routines. In 2017, the International Union of Kettlebell Lifting was given 'observer status' by the Global Association of International Sports Federations, paving the way for it to be considered officially a sport.

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