Traditional strongwomen performed feats of strength and were usually only found in the circus. In 1895 Minevra was awarded with a cup for lifting a platform with 18 men on weighing an amazing 3000lbs!
Modern day strong women events are becoming more popular with female strength athletes, usually incorporating a mix of powerlifting and Olympic lifting with endurance and speed work.
Some of the most common events at a strong woman competition include:
Yoke Carry: A large metal frame with a crossbar, each of the four corners of the frame can be loaded up with weights. The idea is that you carry the frame, with the crossbar across your shoulders and transport a heavy load over a set distance in the shortest amount of time. It demonstrates strength, speed and stability. Current world record holder (men’s) carried 555kg. How to train for yoke without a yoke: load up a bar in the squat rack and walk in place.
Log lift: first entered into the world strongest man competition in 1980. A wooden log is lifted from the ground to an overhead press. A set amount of reps usually in under a minute. The current world record holder (men’s) has lifted 212.5kg. Don’t have a log, try clean and press with a bar
Farmers carry: When doing a farmer’s carry for a strong woman, you use a piece of equipment comprised of a pair of thick metal bars with handles in the middle, this allows you to carry the bar and add weights onto each end. As with the yoke, you are required to carry a heavy load over a set distance within the shortest amount of time. Try loading up a trap bar at the gym and going for a walk.
We have found strongwoman competitions to be friendly and welcoming and a great way to build up strength and confidence.
* If you do have health issues or long-term injuries get your GP’s approval before starting any exercises or nutritional programmes. We recommend not training unsupervised for these events if you are new to lifting *
Written by: Jayne Hartley L3 Personal Trainer & Liz Carter L3 Personal Trainer