Archive for September, 2009

Paul Tucker Talks About Kettlebell Lifting in Australia

Paul Tucker talks about kettlebell lifting in Australia The origins of girevoy sport in Australia can be traced back to a decision I made in late 2005 to compete at the IGSF World Veteran’s competition in Hamburg, Germany in June 2006. I was encouraged by American gireviks Lorraine Patten and Steve Cotter, both of whom had recently competed for their country in Moscow. After using kettlebells for 2 years as a rehabilitation tool, I found out about girevoy sport via Andrey Kuzmin’s website. I became fascinated by the incredible performances and smooth, powerful athletic technique displayed on the videos on Andrey’s website, however never believed I could attempt this difficult sport. But I took the opportunity of a family holiday to England to fly over and compete in Hamburg, where I met Lorraine and many other fine gireviks. The experience convinced me to seriously study the sport and learn the art of jerks, which I found quite hard. Using Andrey’s manuals and watching the Russian championship videos I spent at least 5 days a week practising the sport and performed my first biathlon in the ‘cross-world” competition organised by the North American kettlebell federation (NAKF).

I had made good progress and was especially convinced this was a very healthy sport for all ages. In 2007 I entered as many “virtual” competitions as possible. But living in the remote island state of Tasmania made it difficult to meet other gireviks, so I made the decision to form Girevoy Sport Australia (now GSAA) . The purpose was to promote Girevoy Sport and the use of kettlebells for all sports. I set up a website to introduce the sport and general principles of training, as much as I had been able to learn at that time.

In June 2007 the Association began, with a number of interested people joining and offering valuable support. In Australia there is a small population, spread out over a large area and so opportunities to meet and train were (and still are) limited. As we know most people perceive this as a very hard sport, and there are many easier and maybe more enjoyable sports to distract athletes! Also, there is no government support or sponsoring. To gain recognition as a sport requires at least 3 years of operating competitions, and demonstrating a training structure with regional clubs in each of the states of Australia.

In 2007 GSAA became part of the IUKL and we joined a number of new GS nations based in the west. GSAA had the honour of being the first (and as at September 2009 the only!) nation from the Southern Hemisphere.

In March 2008 we held the first Australian competition, a “virtual” competition where athletes competed in home gyms and in some commercial gyms. This was quite a success and indicated there was sufficient interest in the sport for greater efforts to be made. I published a training manual in June 2007 to assist Australian gireviks to work towards mastering the techniques and basic training programs. In August 2008 I travelled a long way to Ventspils, Latvia to compete in the Open Championship of Europe and importantly to represent Australia at the concurrent conference of nations. It was especially rewarding to meet “old friends” I had met in Hamburg in 2006!

Upon my return we addressed a number of issues concerning formally setting up a financial Association for the sport, including legal issues. In July 2009, we finally announced financial memberships. This allowed us to arrange insurance for athletes, trainers and Association officials – and shortly afterwards conduct the first “proper” competitions in most of the states of Australia. The competition was to encourage as many amateurs as possible to try the sport ; we had 19 participants, a good number considering is was held at short notice – in the middle of winter!

Just before this competition some of us were lucky to attend coaching and certifications carried out by Vasily Ginko, representing the IKSA/IUKL organisation. This was an notable and important occasion as it has provided the first wave of official Girevoy Sport coaches in the country. Some of these people will be heavily involved in developing the sport further, and we look forward to Vasily returning in 2010 for further coaching.

Currently GSAA has over 40 members and as membership is a prerequisite for competition, this number will grow as we are organising the next competition in November 2009. Several gireviks are now talking about the prospect of travelling as a team to Latvia in 2010 . This imposes considerable financial burden on these people, who truly represent the beginnings of a future Olympic team! It will take several years of hard work from many volunteers to gain recognition and hopefully funding to properly develop the sport of kettlebell lifting in Australia.
We are grateful for the encouragement from other nations and coaching assistance from established GS nations. Our official website is http://sites.google.com/site/girevoysportaustralia/

Our emblem is based upon a kangaroo, a unique Australian animal demonstrating tremendous power endurance!

On behalf of our gireviks I extend best wishes to all the nations participating in Girevoy Sport! We hope to introduce an Australian team next year in the Northern Hemisphere, and one day host our own national championship – and later, an Australian championship open to all nations. The challenges are many, but the spirit is strong!

Paul Tucker

President, Girevoy Sport Australia Association

tasgirevik@gmail.com

The New Russian Rank Table

At the last European Kettlebell Lifting Championship held a meeting of the Presidium of the Russian Federation of Kettlebell Lifting. One of the main topics discussed at the meeting was the adoption of new qualification requirements (new rank table), which will come on January 2010.

The important feature of new rank table is the norm «Candidate Master of Sports» for men returned to the kettlebells 24 kilograms and 16 kg – for girls.
Also, as expected, the adoption of new weight classes in accordance with the international rules.

View new rank table

World Kettlebell Championship – Chicago 2009

World Kettlebell Championship - Chicago 2009 This year the World Kettlebell Championship was held August 29 in Chicago. This time it has not so many participants – 34 members. There were participants from Ukraine, Slovenia, Poland and of course from USA.
The competition was held in the classic biathlon and in the long cycle.
Participants could compete with different kettltbells. For men was available kettlebells 24, 28 and 32 kg. For women – 12, 16 and 20 kg.
Among men with 32 kg kettlebells, the best result in biathlon showed Andrew Durniat (his body weight 91 kg.): jerk 70, snatch 60 +60. Separately, I want to note a guest from Slovenia – Gregor Sobocan. His result with 32 kg: jerk 68 and snatch 48+48.
In a long cycle, the best score has Martin Farrell – his result 49 reps with own weight 70 kg.
Among women with kettlebells 20 kg. in biathlon best was Catherine Imes (body weight 76 kg) with the result: jerk 70/70 and snatch 50/50. In the women’s long cycle showed the best results Surya Voinar-Fowler – 60 reps of 20 kg kettlebell for each hand with her own weight 70 kg.

View all results of World Kettlebel Championship