Svit and Determination

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Photo courtesy of Steve Burroughs

Since hitting the Kettlebell Sport scene before the age of 17, Svitlana Krechyk has shown the world she is one of the best. A veteran of the sport in Ukraine and here in America, Svitlana has pushed long cycle to its limits holding 9 different national and world records in Kettlebell Sport including 103 reps in 28kg Long Cycle (World Absolute) and 136 reps in 24kg Snatch (National Record in +68 class). Svitlana Krechyk is MSIC and 6-time World Champion and European Champion under IGSF.  More recently she placed 3rd at the 2014 IUKL World Championships and earned MS in both Long Cycle & Snatch under the AKA/IUKL Rankings.  Her drive to achieve and win perhaps stems from her interest in the NBA – she plays basketball too (well not for the NBA) – or from her determination and willingness to put in the reps and long hours of training. Melissa Swanson, ICKB Master of Sport World Class, reached out to Svitlana recently to help us gain insight into what makes a great lifter. Melissa has had first-hand experience competing along side Svitlana: “Svitlana is one of the kindest, most humble lifters you’ll meet – you’ll find her at most competitions sitting near the front row, smiling and supporting others.”


Photo courtesy of Steve Burroughs

Melissa: How long have you been lifting kettlebells, and how did you get started?

Svitlana: I’ve been competing in kettlebell sport for over 10 years. Growing up in Ukraine, I trained with a top coach who happened to be one of the world’s best. Hetmanenko Serhiy prepared 41 masters of sports, 12 masters of Sports of International Class and 3 Honored Master of Sports. I wanted to become a champion so I try to stick to that motto!

Melissa: What does your typical training week look like? 

Svitlana: I train three days a week: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  I work from 8am to 9pm.  My training starts at 10pm.  Therefore if I want to be the best athlete in the world as I was in 2007, I need to be patient and have more time to make a strong result.

Melissa: What is your favorite lift, and why?

Svitlana: I like them all but am currently focused on snatch.

Melissa: You currently hold records in 28kg & 32kg OALC. What is your secret to so successfully moving such heavy weights? What advice would you give aspiring female long-cyclers who want to lift heavy? 

Svitlana: Get a good coach. The secret of my training and records is in my coach (Hetmanenko Serhiy). My advice to anyone who wants to be champion of the world is to study with him. I also hold the world record in 16 kg snatch with 254 reps.  I had set this at the IGSF World Championships in 2007.


Photo courtesy of Steve Burroughs

Melissa: There is a trend towards women lifting doubles – do you have any interest in that?

Svitlana:  No.  I don’t think that is good for me.  I personally find this is too large of a load on the spine.

Melissa: What are your current goals? 

Svitlana: To set a world record in the 68+kg category and become a world champion.

Melissa: Do you have any competition rituals you can share? What do you do to prepare yourself for the platform?

Svitlana: I try to give everything for the best result.

Melissa: What’s your favorite pre-work out food? 

Svitlana: I like foods rich in protein (meat, eggs, milk) and cereals (buckwheat, oatmeal) and lots of fruits and vegetables.


Svitlana (platform 5) at the 2014 IUKL World Championships in Hamburg, Germany