Everything you need to know about the 2019 World Classic Powerlifting Championships

IPF Worlds 2019  take place in Helsingborg, Sweden. Olympic Channel streams the event live.

By Sanjeev Palar

With the 2019 World Classic Powerlifting Championships taking place in Helsingborg, Sweden, from 3 to 15 June, here's a quick guide to get you up to speed before you stream the competition live on Olympic Channel (from June 11-15).

Powerlifting - the strength sport!

This growing international sport sees athletes compete against the force of iron as well as other athletes.

Practiced in over 100 countries on all continents, it's an event that showcases an individual's pure strength.

Powerlifting VS Weightlifting

Firstly, it is important to note that powerlifting is NOT Olympic weightlifting. And here's why.

Competitive Powerlifting is the sport of strength.

It involves athletes competing in three specific disciplines, each designed to measure different areas of human strength.

The three powerlifts are Squat, Bench Press and Deadlift.

Squat - Jennifer Thompson (USA)

These lifts are increasingly being recognised as principal exercises in the development of an individual's true strength and contribute greatly to bodily health and general well-being.

The total weight of each athlete's best lift in each of the three disciplines determines the winner.

Bench Press - Sergey Fedosienko (RUS)

Raw VS Equipped Powerlifting

Classic (also known as 'raw') powerlifting is different from 'equipped' powerlifting, where competitors can wear squat/deadlift suits and knee wraps

'Equipped' powerlifting was featuring at the 2017 World Games.

Powerlifting Competition Rules

Athletes, men and women from age 14 and upwards, compete in given age groups and weight classes.

Weight classes begin with the 44kg women's class and end with the men's over 120kg class.

Contestants have three attempts to successfully complete a lift in each of the three disciplines, which are run in contest order - Squat, Bench Press and Deadlift.

The combined total weight of the best lift in each discipline determines the winner.

While pure strength is extremely important, strategy also comes into play.

Prior to starting each discipline, each athlete has to nominate the respective weight they intend to lift for each of their three attempts. Once they do so, they cannot decrease the weight.

This adds a twist to the competition especially if an athlete only needs to lift a certain weight for the win, but has nominated a higher weight, he or she will have no choice but to successfully lift the nominated weight in order to clinch the win.

Deadlift - Annika Zelander (SWE)

Ones to watch

The powerlifting athletes from the USA dominated the last meet in Canada, topping the nation points table in both the men and women's categories.

Ray Williams clinched the 2018 title in the over 120kg category.

The American, fondly known as 'Optimus Prime' is one of the biggest names in the sport and in March managed to squat an incredible 490kg at the 2019 Arnold Sports Festival. The feat earned him a USA Powerlifting national record and an unofficial IPF world record.

Judging from his Instagram posts, Williams is not only looking to defend his title but is also keen to make that squat record official.

USA's Jennifer Thompson is an eleven-time World Powerlifting Champion. The reigning champion will be looking to add to her list of accolades in Sweden.

Powerlifting since 1999, Thompson has broken the world record almost 70 times in Bench Press and Total combined.

The under-63kg athlete comes to Helsingborg fresh after picking up the World Open Bench Press Championships title in Japan in May.

Russia's Fedosienko Sergey reigned supreme in the under-59kg category last year.

The 36-year-old, who is 1.46m tall, is possibly one of the most decorated powerlifters from the last decade with 13 titles to his name.

The five-time World Classic Powerlifting Champion currently owns all the Open under-59kg classic world records, except for the squat. But let's see if that still the case at the end of this meet.

On the women's side, -72kg defending champion Ana Castellain of Brazil and 2018 +84kg gold medallist Bonica Lough (nee Brown) are also worth a mention.

While most athletes will be aiming to break records, Britain's Karenjeet Kaur Bains is happy to break barriers.

The 22-year-old from Warwickshire, England, is making history as the first Sikh woman to represent Britain at the World Classic Powerlifting Championships.

Following in the footsteps of her powerlifting father, Kuldip, Bains will be aiming to improve on her personal best whilst making a splash for British powerlifting.

Schedule of the 2019 IPF World Classic Powerlifting Championships (times CEST)


Tuesday 04/06

08:00 Men M4 59kg -+120kg Women M2-M4 47 -52 kg

14:30 Women M2-M4 57 kg Women M2-M4 63 kg

18:00 Women M2-M4 84 -84+ kg Women M2-M4 72kg

Wednesday 05/06

09:00 Men M3 93-120+ kg Men M 3 59 - 66 kg

12:00 Men M3 83 kg Men M3 74 kg

16:00 Men M2 74 - 83 kg Men M2 59 -66 kg

Thursday 06/06

08:00 Men M2 93 - 105kg Men M2 120 - +120 kg

12:00 Men M1 74 kg Men M 1 59 - 66 kg

15:30 Men M1 83 kg

19:00 Women M1 57 -63 kg Women M1 47 - 52 kg

Friday 07/06

08:00 Women M1 84 - +84 kg Women M1 72 kg

12:00 Men M1 93 kg Men M1 105 kg

17:00 Men M1 120 kg Men M1 120 + kg


Saturday 08/06

08:00 Men Junior 53 – 59 kg Men Sub-Junior 53 – 59 kg

11:30 Women Junior 43 - 52 kg Women Sub Junior 43 – 52 kg

16:00 Men Sub-Junior.& Junior 66 kg

19:30 Men Junior 74 kg Men Sub Junior 74 kg

Sunday , 09/06

9:00 Women Junior 57 -63 kg Women Sub Junior 57 – 63 kg

13:00 Men Junior 83 kg Men Sub Junior 83 - 105 kg

17:00 Men Junior 105 kg Men Junior 93 kg

Monday 10/06

08:00 Women Junior 72 kg Women Sub Junior 72 - +84 kg

12:00 Women Junior 84 - +84 kg

15:00 Men Junior 120 -+120 kg Men Sub Junior 120 - +120 kg

From 11-15 June you can follow all these stories as well as all the action from the 2019 World Classic Powerlifting Championships live on the Olympic Channel.

Tuesday 11/06

09:00 Women Open 47 kg

13:00 Women Open 52 kg

17:00 Men Open 59 kg

Wednesday 12/06

09:00 Women Open 57 kg

13:00 Men Open 66 kg

16:00 Women Open 63 kg

Thursday 13/06

09:00 Men Open 74 kg

13:00 Women Open 72 kg

17:30 Men Open 83 kg

Friday 14/06

08:00 Men Open 93 kg

12:00 Women Open 84 kg

16:00 Women Open +84kg

18:30 Men Open 105 kg

Saturday 15/06

09:00 Open Men 120 kg

13:00 Men Open +120 kg