THREE athletes from Kilkenny Kettlebell club made history when they represented Ireland and made the podium in the 20th International Gira Sport Federation World Championships in Italy recently. Denise Holohan, Mark Stapleton and Eddie Sheehan competed against 23 other countries in the biggest world championships so far. Competitors had 10 minutes to complete as many repititions as possible without putting the bells down.
Denise won a silver medal for snatching a 16kg kettlebell 138 times and missed out on gold by just four lifts. Eddie won three bronze medals in the professional division. He jerked 2 x 32kg kettlebells overhead 110 times and snatched a 32kg Kettlebell 126 times. Mark also competed in the pro division but was unlucky not to feature in the medals. This is the first time Ireland has won medals in this competition and it is a major achievement. Eddie was also presented with the official title of ‘Master of Sport’ from the president of the International Gira Sport Federation . He is the first Irishman to be awarded this honour and one of the few people from outside Russia and the Ukraine to receive this award.
Next year Mark and Eddie will travel to Russia with an Irish and UK team to study and compete against Russia’s best Kettlebell sport athletes. They are the first foreign athletes to be invited to study at one of the prestigious sports universities in Russia.
Kilkenny kettlebell club is always on the look out for more athletes. Age is not an issue as athletes compete in different age categories - junior, senior and veteran .The kettlebell coaches are among the best qualified in Ireland and devise training programmes for all divisions . Do you have what it takes ? Kilkenny will again be hosting the 4th Irish Kettlebell Sports Championships next summer. Details on www.Kilkennykettlebellclub.com