As 2022 draws to a close, I feel pleased that it was indeed a better year for streetlifting than the previous pandemic years.
I am grateful for the work of all those throughout our global streetlifting family who have risen to the challenge in 2022 and demonstrated a commitment to unity in the best interests of our sport.
This year we held the first ISF World Championship in history simultaneously in two countries – Kazakhstan and the Netherlands. The strongest athletes from 10 countries participated (. It was a big step for the development of streetlifting, with a series of outstanding athletic performances resulting.
For this progress, I must acknowledge the tireless professionalism of our colleagues from the Netherlands, led by Paco Podunajec, who was able to prepare for such an important event with his team in a short time and conduct it with dignity. And I also want to mention our colleagues from Kazakhstan, led by Andrei Makarenko, who kindly agreed to take on the main role in organizing the World Championships after the emergency postponement of the competition from Russia (in March, the ISF decided to cancel all international competitions in Russia due to its military aggression against Ukraine).
I had the pleasure of attending the ISF World Championships in Oral, Kazakhstan. I was impressed by the results achieved by our colleagues in Kazakhstan. They were able to hold a series of qualifying tournaments for several years and put together a strong national team, which eventually took first place.
I would like to note another important step taken in 2022 – the official registration of the first continental ISF federation – the European Streetlifting Federation. Thanks to the efforts of Paco Podunajec (President of EUSF) and his team, streetlifting has developed rapidly in the European continent. Support was received from the European Union under the Erasmus+ program, good relations were established with the National Olympic Committees. I wish success to our European colleagues and I am sure that all this will allow streetlifting to reach a new qualitative level.
It was also pleasing to see the ISF family itself continue to grow this year, with the addition of Senegal, Philippines, Bulgaria, Italy, Slovenia and Switzerland increasing our membership to 25 nations.
Looking forward to 2023, we remain committed to continuing reforms in the best interests of our sport.
The 5th General Congress will be held in January. Work will begin on amending the ISF charter to make it a truly workable tool to ensure exemplary governance in all areas of our activities. It is also planned to add a new sports discipline to the ISF rules – weighted muscle up.
In February, the 2023 ISF Electoral Congress is planned to be held as part of the Absolute ISF European Championship, which will be held in the Netherlands. ISF President, General Secretary, Chairman of the ISF Referee Committee, Chairman of the ISF Control and Audit Committee will be elected.
In closing, I thank everyone for their support and faithful effort this year to rise out of the disruption and devastation of world events from the last years. I pray all of you remain safe, healthy, and strong. Set your priorities for 2023, work hard towards achieving them and we will all enjoy the success.