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The National Sport of Turkmenistan is Weightlifting.

Weightlifting in Turkmenistan symbolizes strength and discipline, making it an important part of the country’s culture.

To learn more about sports culture in Turkmenistan, read our article about the most popular sports in Turkmenistan.


#1 History of Weightlifting

  • 1920: Weightlifting made its first appearance in the Olympic Games, marking a new era for the sport globally.
  • 1980s-1990s: Weightlifting gained popularity in Turkmenistan during the Soviet era, when the country was part of the Soviet Union.
  • 2007: The Turkmenistan Weightlifting Federation was established, further promoting the sport in the country.
  • 2018: Turkmenistan hosted the IWF World Weightlifting Championships, showcasing the nation’s commitment and passion for the sport.

#2 Culture and Traditions

Weightlifting holds a significant place in Turkmenistan’s cultural identity, reflecting the nation’s values of strength and perseverance. It has evolved from traditional practices, where physical strength was necessary for daily tasks and defense, to becoming a modern competitive sport that resonates with both the young and old generations.

Various festivals and events in Turkmenistan are celebrated with weightlifting demonstrations and competitions. These events not only showcase the sporting prowess of the athletes but also serve as a source of entertainment and pride for the community. Weightlifting successes are often hailed as symbols of national achievements and are widely celebrated.

Annual weightlifting competitions provide opportunities for athletes to showcase their skills and achieve national recognition. Through these events, the sport maintains a strong presence in Turkmenistan’s society, enhancing its cultural value and promoting a healthy and active lifestyle.

#3 How it Works: Rules, Gameplay and Equipment

πŸ“• Rules & Gameplay

  • Categories: Competitors are divided into different bodyweight categories to ensure fair competition.
  • Disciplines: The sport consists of two main disciplines: the snatch and the clean and jerk.
  • Attempts: Each weightlifter has three attempts in each discipline to achieve their highest possible combined total weight lifted.
  • Judging: Lifts are judged based on the athletes’ successful completion of specific movements and adherence to technical rules.
  • Winner: The winner is determined by the highest combined total weight lifted in both disciplines.

βš™οΈ Equipment & Gear

  • Barbell: The primary equipment used in weightlifting, typically weighing 20kg for men and 15kg for women.
  • Weight Plates: Discs of varying weights added to the barbell to reach the desired lifting weight.
  • Lifting Platform: A sturdy surface for athletes to perform their lifts safely and securely.
  • Weightlifting Shoes: Specialized footwear designed to provide stability and support during heavy lifts.
  • Singlet: A close-fitting one-piece garment worn by weightlifters to allow unrestricted movement during competition.

#4 Modern Development of Weightlifting

In recent decades, weightlifting in Turkmenistan has experienced progress in both infrastructure and talent development. The construction of modern training facilities and the hosting of international competitions, like the 2018 IWF World Weightlifting Championships, have contributed to the sport’s growth and raised its profile within the country.

Technological advancements have played a role in refining training methods, allowing athletes to optimize their performances and minimize injury risks. Furthermore, initiatives promoting fair play and anti-doping measures have contributed to the sport’s integrity and fostered a healthier, more competitive environment.

The growing number of successful Turkmen weightlifters in regional and international competitions serves as a testament to the country’s dedication to the sport. These achievements inspire the younger generation to pursue weightlifting and maintain the sport’s vital role in Turkmenistan’s cultural fabric, securing its future for the years to come.

#5 Weightlifting and the Olympics

Weightlifting has been a prominent part of the Olympic Games since 1920 and has grown into one of the most popular sports in the event. The global stage of the Olympics allows countries like Turkmenistan to showcase their talent and dedication to the sport, while also exposing weightlifting to audiences from around the world.

The Olympics have played a significant role in elevating weightlifting’s international recognition and prestige, encouraging interest and participation among aspiring athletes. As Olympians push the boundaries of human capability, the sport continues to expand and capture the imagination of millions worldwide.

#6 Famous Athletes and Achievements

  1. Rejepbay Akmyradov: Turkmenistan’s first Olympic weightlifter, who competed in the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, and has set several national records.
  2. Umurbek Bazarbayev: A highly-regarded weightlifter who has won multiple medals at the Asian Weightlifting Championships and has represented Turkmenistan at the Olympics.
  3. AΓ½gΓΌl Γ–razbaΓ½ewa: A standout female weightlifter in Turkmenistan, who has represented the country at various international competitions including the 2014 IWF World Weightlifting Championships.
  4. Hojamuhammet ToΓ½Γ§yΓ½ew: A talented weightlifter who has secured several medals at the Asian Weightlifting Championships, and has represented Turkmenistan at the World Weightlifting Championships and the Olympics.

#7 Where to watch Weightlifting

  • Local broadcasters and streaming services: Turkmenistan’s national sports channels, such as Turkmenistan Sport, provide coverage of weightlifting events, while international streaming platforms like Eurosport Player and the Olympic Channel offer broader access to global competitions.
  • Live events: To experience the excitement of weightlifting firsthand, notable venues in Turkmenistan include the massive Ashgabat Olympic Complex or the Berkarar Stadium, where national and international competitions are often held.

Max is a sports enthusiast who loves all kinds of ball and water sports. He founded & runs stand-up-paddling.org (#1 German Paddleboarding Blog), played competitive Badminton and Mini Golf (competed on national level in Germany), started learning β€˜real’ Golf and dabbled in dozens of other sports & activities.

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