Yesterday, USA Weightlifting (USAW) released a statement regarding the IWF’s proposal to introduce a new women’s weight class, bringing to total number of weight classes for women to eight (equal with the number available to men). USAW says that if the new weight class is approved at the IWF Congress in October, they plan on offering the category starting at the American Open (December 8-11 in Orlando, Florida).

From the statement:

In anticipation of the formal approval of an additional 8th bodyweight category for Women, expected to be above the 75kg category, USA Weightlifting is delighted to confirm it will include the new category immediately after formal IWF approval.

A new women’s weight class above 75kg but below the superheavyweight category seems like a welcome possibility to many in the weightlifting community, as fans, athletes, and coaches have long voiced concern over the 75kg/165 p0und cutoff between the limited and open weight classes. A new class in an increment above 75kg could expand the sport’s appeal by providing an option for heavier and/or taller athletes who don’t wish to compete as superheavyweights.

For the 2016 American Open, female athletes who have qualified in either the 75kg or +75kg categories will be able to choose between their current class and the new weight class (assuming it’s ratified). The national qualifying totals for all three classes are listed in the USAW release via the following chart.

Meet Q Total 75kg Q Total +75kg New Weight Category*
National Juniors – Kansas City 144kg 160kg 154kg
Nationals – Chicago 189kg 194kg 192kg
National Youth 16-17  – Atlanta 118kg 125kg 122kg
Nat University(TBD – 2016 used) 155kg 164kg 159kg
American Open Final (TBD – 2016 used) – Anaheim, CA 176kg 184kg 180kg

Featured image: USA Weightlifting

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