Strong + Bendy
A Hackney woman has broken a men’s world record by whipping a 44 foot, 10 kilogram rope for an hour.
Founder of Strong + Bendy Gym in Hackney Wick, Rhian Cowburn runs fitness classes in her East London gym and took on battle rope training to cope with her business being closed during the coronavirus lockdown.
Rhian became intrigued about the world record after her confidence in achieving unbroken sets over increasingly longer periods of time grew. She soon discovered there was no woman’s record at all and all she needed was a minimum of 22 minutes to become a record holder.
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The men’s record to beat stood at 59 minutes and 28 seconds and was set by Ambrish Parmar.
Rhian said: “It was clear to me that setting the women’s record was going to be relatively easy. An unbroken 22 minute set on the battle ropes had become the norm for me, I did it in nearly every training session.
“So for me the goal was really to break the men’s record”.
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Despite the men’s and women’s records being categorised separately Guinness World Records required that exactly the same length and width of rope be used.
“It’s an annoying fact that men typically start from a place of having 40-50% more upper body strength than women, and of course there’s normally a height difference too.
“Initially I thought it would be fairer if the rules stipulated a slightly shorter rope could be used for women, however this wasn’t the case.
“I have proven that when it comes to Battle Ropes Men aren’t stronger, they just have a head start - with enough determination [the advantage] can be overcome,” Rhian added.
The rope used had to be a minimum of 40ft long and 1 inch thick, to be whipped from hip to shoulder height with each repetition. Rhian whipped the ropes at a rate of three repetitions per second, 10,800 times in total, in order to beat the world record.
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The attempt was overseen by a specialist witness, an independent witness and two timekeepers. Video footage was then verified by Guinness World Records specialist team.
Rhian runs Battle Ropes classes at Strong + Bendy Gym.
For more information or to learn battle rope from the world record holder visit www.strongandbendy.co.uk
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