Estonian Hercules plays with bars

  • 2000-11-30
  • Andrei Titov
TALLINN - The sixth Estonian weightlifting championship was held at the restaurant Raekk Nov. 26. It was the horizontal bench-press, to be exact. Bench-press is one of three basic elements of power lifting. The other two are the deadlift and squat. Bench-press is the most effective method to determine one's shoulder, arm and breast muscle strength.

There were three groups at the competition: boys (age 14-17), juniors (age 18-20) and adults (over 20). The women's championship also took place, but only in one category regardless of age. Nearly 80 athletes took part altogether.

The competition was carried out in several weight categories. But in the end there was only one absolute champion, determined with the special Wilks' table that shows a coefficient for each weight category. After lifting a particular weight, the weight (in kilograms) is multiplied by the coefficient for the lifter's weight category. The athlete who gets the highest multiplied sum becomes the absolute champion. Tarmo Mitt (136 kg) from the TUSK sports club managed to lift 215 kg and was crowned the absolute champion.

The marking system consists of many details. For example, an athlete lifts the bar, but the attempt is deemed a failure because his arms trembled or buttocks came off the bench.

According to Arnold Tokko, president of the Estonian Weightlifting Union, the sport is very popular in Estonia and its popularity is growing year after year.

"We organized the championship at the restaurant on purpose. The point of it is that common people, not athletes, won't go looking for a sports hall, but they may accidentally come by this place. If they like the event, they'll come back once again next year. Like this, we try to come across new weightlifting fans here at the restaurant," said Tokko.