|Competitions held||213 (Venues)|
|IF||International Weightlifting Federation, Amateur-Athleten-Weltunion, Internationaler Kraftsportverband|
Weightlifting in various forms has been popular for centuries. Strongmen of all types often performed at various fairs in the Middle Ages. In the 19th century, professional strongmen often toured with carnivals or vaudeville shows. However, weightlifting as a sport became organized only in the late 19th century. The governing body is the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF), which had 187 member nations in late 2004. The first governing body was founded on 10 June 1905 in Duisburg as the Amateur Athleten Weltunion, with four founding members: Denmark, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands, but this organization did not last long. Meetings during the 1912 Olympics ended in a congress held on 9 June 1913 in Berlin, where the Internationaler Weltverband für Schwerathletik was founded with nine members: Austria, Bohemia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Russia, and Sweden. This organization was renamed to Internationaler Kraftsportverband in 1920, but disappeared in 1923. All these organizations did not only govern weightlifting, but also boxing, tug-of-war, weight throwing, and wrestling. The current federation was founded in 23 August 1920 during the Antwerpen Olympics as the Fédération internationale haltérophile (FIH) and was the first only responsible for wightlifting. It was renamed to Fédération internationale haltérophile et culturiste (FIHC) in 1950, when bodybuiling was added, but this was again deleted in 1968 and the name became Fédération Haltérophile Internationale (FHI). The current name was adoppted in 1972.
Weightlifting has been on the program of the Olympic Games except in the years of 1900, 1908, and 1912. The program has varied little except for the addition of more and more weight classes in recent years. Originally there were no weight classes, only an open competition, and in 1920 and 1924 there were also one-handed lifts. Beginning in 1928, the three Olympic lifts were standardized as the military press, the snatch, and the clean & jerk. Because of difficulties judging the press, and because there was some concern that the lift was biomechanically dangerous to lifters’ backs, it was eliminated from international competition after the 1972 Olympics. Today lifters compete only in the snatch and the clean & jerk at the Olympics. Women made their Olympic début in weightlifting at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, with seven weight classes.
Weightlifting has been dominated by the Soviet Union after its entry to the Olympics in 1952. In the 1970s and 1980s, Bulgaria challenged that dominance, although a number of its lifters ran afoul of drug testing, notably in 1992. The United States was once a weightlifting power but has won only one Olympic medal since 1968 (and none since 1976), with the exception of the 1984 Olympics which were not attended by the East European nations. In recent Games, China has emerged as a strong nation in the sport, and, with 24 Olympic titles, is currently second only to the Soviet Union. The four lifters to have won three Olympic golds, however, all represented Turkey and Greece: Halil Mutlu, Naim Süleymanoğlu, Pyrros Dimas and Akakios Kakiasvili (won his first gold for the Unified Team in 1992).
Beginning in 1993, the weight classes in international weightlifting have been changed, with a completely new set of world records. This is to eliminate the possibility of earlier records having been set by drug users prior to stricter drug controls. Another restructuring of weight classes happened for the 2000 Olympics, in order to allow for the women’s events.
|People's Republic of China||CHN||31||15||8||54|
|Islamic Republic of Iran||IRI||9||5||5||19|
|Democratic People's Republic of Korea||PRK||5||8||4||17|
|Republic of Korea||KOR||3||6||6||15|
|Trinidad and Tobago||TTO||0||1||2||3|
|Akakios Kakiasvili|| GRE
|Arkady Vorobyov|| RUS
|Aliaksandr Kurlovich|| BLR
|Hossein Reza Zadeh||IRI||2||0||0||2|
|Name||Gender||Still contested?||Times held?|
|Unlimited, One Hand||Men||3|
|Unlimited, Two Hands||Men||4|
|All-Around Dumbbell Contest||Men||1|