Wednesday, March 6, 2019

New Blog: FondOfBeetles

A fine new blog, FondOfBeetles, came into my view on Twitter with a long essay on sex segregation of athletics, and more context of what men competing against women would look like based on the existing record books. Excerpt:
A comparison of our 69kg Olympic weightlifting record holders suggests differently (Figure 6). Liao Hui (male; 166/198/359kg) and Oksana Slivenko (female; 123/156/276kg) were, at the time of their record breaking lifts, two people of the same weight and about an inch different in height. Hui outlifts Slivenko by 43kg in the snatch and 42kg in the clean & jerk, for a total of 85kg greater combined. 85kg is 13st5lb, about the weight of a typical male 100m sprinter, and over 30% of the female combined lift weight. Even when body size is approximately equivalent, females are not close to male strength.

The strongest female in the world. So, the 69kg male weightlifter hammers the 69kg female weightlifter on strength. Where are the females who are stronger than Hui? How tall and heavy are they? The answer is, in Olympic weightlifting, they don’t exist. Holding the records in the heaviest female weight category (+90kg) is Tatiana Kashirina, with 155/193/348kg (Figure 6). You’ve read that correctly. The male record holder for the 69kg category can outlift the female record holder in the top category, a female who has a 4 inch height advantage and over 6 stone of weight on him, a female who might reasonably be described as the strongest woman in the world. Clearly, the strength performance gap between males and females is not one of scale.
Kashirina would beat the male records in the 56kg (139/171/307kg) and 62kg (154/183/333kg) categories (21). Chen Lijun holds the clean & jerk and combined records at 62kg; he’s 1.62cm (5’4’’). So the strongest woman in the world has a shot against males who are 46kg (7st3lb) lighter and at least six inches shorter than her. She’s only lifting 13% more than the male record holder in a weight category almost half her bodyweight.
Sidebar link coming presently.

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