# Powerlifter: Why the Name?

I’m just curious where powerlifters got their name. I mean power is the amount of force you can generate given a unit of time, right? It’s obvious that powerlifting is a strength sport. It’s all about grinding all-out maximum force, not power. If anything, olympic lifts have more power outputs than the big three, and it would seem more appropriate if olympic lifters were called powerlifters and if powerlifters were called forcelifters.

Just my thoughts. I’m not saying they’re 100% right. Correct me if I’m wrong.

You’re correct, but you’re over thinking it a bit. the name powerlifting preceded the actual lifts as we know them today. I believe (don’t quote me on this) the name originated in the 20s and 30s when most of the lifts were actually true ``power’’ lifts such as cleans, presses, jerks, knee bends etc.

The name ``powerlifts’’ stuck even after the aau changed the actual competition lifts to deep knee bends, supine press etc. and eventually to the modern day squat/bench/dead. the name powerlifting stayed the same.

You’re right. We’ve actually discussed this at my (primarily oly) gym before.

Why? Cause forcelifters sound like fuckin’ jedi.

The essence of the mind while trying to process canibus sativa often causes one to overrationalize the irrational for unneccesary reasons.

Wrong! Power is the amount of energy spent per unit time or equivalently, force exerted throughout a given velocity:

P = E/t = F*v

Powerlifting is a correct term because we are trying to lift extremely heavy loads quickly–i.e., maximizing power. Olympic style lifts require much higher velocities and therefore could be consider ultra-power lifts.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Wrong! Power is the amount of energy spent per unit time or equivalently, force exerted throughout a given velocity:

P = E/t = F*v

Powerlifting is a correct term because we are trying to lift extremely heavy loads quickly–i.e., maximizing power. Olympic style lifts require much higher velocities and therefore could be consider ultra-power lifts.[/quote]

What I don’t understand is why is the assumption here powerlifters want to lift slow?

Knowing that WR clean and jerk is approximately what 585 lbs the fastest part was from chest to overhead at about .7 seconds.

WR Raw bench 715lbs done in about 1 second sounds like roughly equivelant power, just different muscles.

[quote]Airtruth wrote:
LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Wrong! Power is the amount of energy spent per unit time or equivalently, force exerted throughout a given velocity:

P = E/t = F*v

Powerlifting is a correct term because we are trying to lift extremely heavy loads quickly–i.e., maximizing power. Olympic style lifts require much higher velocities and therefore could be consider ultra-power lifts.

What I don’t understand is why is the assumption here powerlifters want to lift slow?

Knowing that WR clean and jerk is approximately what 585 lbs the fastest part was from chest to overhead at about .7 seconds.

WR Raw bench 715lbs done in about 1 second sounds like roughly equivelant power, just different muscles. [/quote]

Velocity = Distance / Time.

While the time MAY be only slightly slower in a powerlift, the distance is definitely shorter. Compare lifting a weight from the floor to above the head, as opposed to…locking out your arms.

Jesus this is a stupid discussion.

[quote]Mister T. wrote:
Airtruth wrote:
LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Wrong! Power is the amount of energy spent per unit time or equivalently, force exerted throughout a given velocity:

P = E/t = F*v

Powerlifting is a correct term because we are trying to lift extremely heavy loads quickly–i.e., maximizing power. Olympic style lifts require much higher velocities and therefore could be consider ultra-power lifts.

What I don’t understand is why is the assumption here powerlifters want to lift slow?

Knowing that WR clean and jerk is approximately what 585 lbs the fastest part was from chest to overhead at about .7 seconds.

WR Raw bench 715lbs done in about 1 second sounds like roughly equivelant power, just different muscles.

Velocity = Distance / Time.

While the time MAY be only slightly slower in a powerlift, the distance is definitely shorter. Compare lifting a weight from the floor to above the head, as opposed to…locking out your arms.

Jesus this is a stupid discussion.
[/quote]

but it still helps to kill time.

I was using velocity. Just using peak velocity(See above where I stated from chest to overhead just for people like you), not average. If you want to go by average velocity. Then powerlifting is either equally or more powerful.

Considering for a WR C&J your cleaning as fast as you can but to a low enough position where you can get under it then stabilize and raise yourself stabilize again then jerk to an overhead position. Which for the world record of 585 took about 19 seconds (d = 7.5 ft), which is EXTREMELY less powerful then 715 d = 1.25 ft in 1 second.

[quote]Airtruth wrote:
Mister T. wrote:
Airtruth wrote:
LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Wrong! Power is the amount of energy spent per unit time or equivalently, force exerted throughout a given velocity:

P = E/t = F*v

Powerlifting is a correct term because we are trying to lift extremely heavy loads quickly–i.e., maximizing power. Olympic style lifts require much higher velocities and therefore could be consider ultra-power lifts.

What I don’t understand is why is the assumption here powerlifters want to lift slow?

Knowing that WR clean and jerk is approximately what 585 lbs the fastest part was from chest to overhead at about .7 seconds.

WR Raw bench 715lbs done in about 1 second sounds like roughly equivelant power, just different muscles.

Velocity = Distance / Time.

While the time MAY be only slightly slower in a powerlift, the distance is definitely shorter. Compare lifting a weight from the floor to above the head, as opposed to…locking out your arms.

Jesus this is a stupid discussion.

but it still helps to kill time.

I was using velocity. Just using peak velocity(See above where I stated from chest to overhead just for people like you), not average. If you want to go by average velocity. Then powerlifting is either equally or more powerful.

Considering for a WR C&J your cleaning as fast as you can but to a low enough position where you can get under it then stabilize and raise yourself stabilize again then jerk to an overhead position. Which for the world record of 585 took about 19 seconds (d = 7.5 ft), which is EXTREMELY less powerful then 715 d = 1.25 ft in 1 second.[/quote]

Yeah, but in the C&J, there’s the rest time when the bar is racked and it’s not moving at all.

If you want to get real technical, use the snatch instead of the C&J.

Yeah, fucking split second from the floor to overhead.

This is - bar none - the most stupid discussion I’ve ever been involved in on this forum.

Which part of it is stupid? The reason why I started this topic or the arguments some of these guys have presented?

Robo1 has some good info. Can anybody confirm this?

As far as power is concerned, the jerk seems to be the most powerful lift ever, and the snatch actually has 10 times the power output of the bench. at least according to this:

Which part of it is stupid? The reason why I started this topic or the arguments some of these guys have presented?

Robo1 has some good info. Can anybody confirm this?

As far as power is concerned, the jerk seems to be the most powerful lift ever, and the snatch actually has 10 times the power output of the bench. at least according to this:

http://www.exrx.net/ExInfo/PowerTidbits.html[/quote]

No offense but I think the topic is more stupid than the arguments, after all its just a name.

I can’t see how that exrx power output chart can possibly be right, unless they list weights. Then even if they do I still can’t believe that they would have measured the power outputs of powerlifters.

I do think the snatch is more powerful than the clean and jerk as a whole though.

[quote]Mister T. wrote:

This is - bar none - the most stupid discussion I’ve ever been involved in on this forum.[/quote]

There are some way stupider things on this forum. You must be avoiding them.

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
Mister T. wrote:

This is - bar none - the most stupid discussion I’ve ever been involved in on this forum.

There are some way stupider things on this forum. You must be avoiding them.[/quote]

Definitely. I don’t post much, and when I do, it usually doesn’t involve discussions as pointless as these.

OP: What’s stupid about this? Just the topic in general, and the fact that we’re arguing about it, and the fact that some people actually seem to be taking this quite seriously.

…because when it comes right down to it, who actually gives a rat’s ass?

Good point. I just wanted to know the history behind the name powerlifting. The discussion could have ended after robo1’s reply, or it could have added and/or confirmed robo1’s reply. It should have never been an argument about which exercise is more powerful than what.

If discussions ended with robo1’s reply this would be a very boring site and I wuold chop my head off at work.

Which part of it is stupid? The reason why I started this topic or the arguments some of these guys have presented?

Robo1 has some good info. Can anybody confirm this?

As far as power is concerned, the jerk seems to be the most powerful lift ever, and the snatch actually has 10 times the power output of the bench. at least according to this:

http://www.exrx.net/ExInfo/PowerTidbits.html[/quote]

Maybe when people were naming the sports they weren’t physics professors?

And it is a stupid topic.

Good point. I just wanted to know the history behind the name powerlifting. The discussion could have ended after robo1’s reply, or it could have added and/or confirmed robo1’s reply. It should have never been an argument about which exercise is more powerful than what.[/quote]

Here, hopefully this should put this to rest. I called up an old coach of mine who has been affiliated with the AAU for more than 50 years. Here is how he explained it to me.

Originally there was no such thing as Olympic weightlifting as we know it today. there were just different strength competitions that included a wide variety of lifts, standing presses, deadlifting, bar bending, balancing acts, and dozens of other lifts.

When the modern day Olympics were created they began to whittle down the lifts to a select few to standardize the competitions. In the early 1930s the Olympic weightlifting committees agreed on three lifts, the press, snatch and clean & jerk.

However other types of weightlifting and strongman competitions, continued to go on. These competitions often centered around the snatch, clean, press, jerk, but also included what he called ``odd lifts’’ such as the squat, supine press (which is a bench press without the bench), deadlift as well as other strength feats such as behind the neck presses, arm curls and bar bending.

In the 1950s the AAU Weightlifting committee began recognizing some of these `odd lifts'' and started to sanction separate competitions and catalog records. The AAU then changed the name of the events from `odd lifts’’ to `Strength or Power Lifts'' and in 1964 the AAU Weightlifting committee gave up control of the `Strength or Power Lifts’’ to a separate committee, which dropped the word `strength'' and adopted the `Power Lifts’’ name.

Eventually by the 1970s many of the odd lifts were thrown out and the AAU – and later the newly formed IPF which had also adopted the powerlifting name – agreed that squat/bench/dead would be the only lifts recognized.

The guy who told me all this has been involved in powerlifting for more than half a century and has pretty much seen and done everything that this sport has to offer and I trust anything he tells me. so take this for what its worth.