The Long Tradition of Lifting Stones
Strength challenges have existed for as long as men have been around other men, and for a long time, this involved lifting stones. You were not considered a man in Scotland, for example, until you could lift a “manhood stone” to waist height. For example:
- The Inver Stone – 121.6 kg (268 pounds)
- The Dinnie Stones – two stones that totaled 333 kg (734 pounds)
- The Menzies Stone – 115 kg (253.5 pounds)
In Welsh tradition, boys also had to lift certain stones to waist height to be considered a man. There were no set sizes, just what was locally available or deemed heavy enough by the local king. One of these — the Garreg Orchest — is still in place in the town of Criccieth in Gwynedd, North Wales. There are three levels of lifting this stone: break the ground, waist height, and shoulder height. People travel from all over to test themselves against this 392lb stone – and there has been one successful lift so far this year.