Like bodybuilding, power lifting is no longer a rare sport like it was a decade ago. As a sport, power lifting has survived an era of misunderstanding and biased under – appreciation, to become a popular sport. But most people cannot differentiate between bodybuilding and power lifting. Power lifting is as ancient as it is unique.
While bodybuilding is not yet a recognized sport, power lifting was incorporated in the inaugural Olympic Games in 1896. Bodybuilding is simply put, not a sport. Power lifting was and has remained the only Olympic sporting event that involves as part of the sport, heavy weights. At a time when most people did not understand or appreciate the sport, power lifting was given a slot in the Olympics. This led to it being commonly referred to as the Olympic Power lifting or quite simply Olympic Lifting.
Today most people no longer regard bodybuilding and power lifting in ignorance. It’s a common understanding that power lifting is a modern sport exhibiting the world’s strongest and most powerful men and lately women, competing to lift unbelievable weight sizes.
Weightlifters are therefore the Body building on the other hand is a modern quest exhibiting men and women with unbelievably large and well defined strongest and often those with the most powerful muscles from all over the world while bodybuilders posses the largest muscles toned to perfection. Both body builders and weight lifters learn their art and build their muscles through hard and specialized training. Training for power lifting involves developing enormous body strength packed in compact body frames not in bulk frames possessed by bodybuilders.
Bodybuilders are extremely dedicated and disciplined athletes who in most times are quite strong. But these can not compare in strength with the best weightlifters. Actually a difference between the two sports is that body builder’s well formed muscles whether possessing strength or not, compete solely based on their appearance. Yet weight lifters develop muscles purely for strength. In most instances, muscle size does not correlate highly with strength.
We have four broad categories in which we can classify those athletes who train with weights. These include weight trainers, weight lifters, power lifters and bodybuilders. Though these sports use weights as their training tools, they are distinct and much specialised sports.
There are those individuals who train and practice with weights for purposes of their general fitness, or to as an effort to improve their performance in some other sport, are basically called weight trainers. Those athletes with smaller and often less visible muscles may out-lift bodybuilders with voluminous muscles. The athletes who train with weights purely to build strength participate in the sport called power lifting. On their part, body builders do not train with weights primarily for strength but to form large and well defined muscles. Power lifters are extremely strong athletes with a level of competition beyond that of weigh lifters.
Power lifting is primarily a test of body strength and power while body building is a show of developed and well defined body muscles. In power lifting, body power is a crucial factor because the ability to move with speed and balance ultra heavy weight barbells is relatively as important as pure strength itself. In body building, the ability to identify and develop the volume of each body ligament and fibre to solid distinct muscle packs is determined not only by conscious effort but by persistent application of pressure.