Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

When does the OWA season run?

The OWA season runs from April 1st to March 31st annually. All memberships expire on March 31st.

Are membership fees pro-rated?

No. New and rejoining members between April 1st and March 31st pay the full annual membership fee.

What if I am a coach and an athlete, do I need to purchase two memberships?

No. Only one membership fee is required and you are to select the appropriate membership category that’s at a higher cost. Members have the option to upgrade their membership at a later date within the current season. See Membership.

How do I become a member?

You can be a member of our association if you have an Ontario address and you’re affiliated with an OWA-registered club. See Membership Policy.

Note: Temporary Residents cannot set records or represent Ontario or Canada at national or international competitions.

I want to become a member, but I’m not affiliated with OWA-registered club.

To meet the club requirement, you can: join an existing OWA-registered club, have your current gym register as a club, or register your own club. See Club Registration.

I’m a novice lifter, which competitions can I participate in?

Athletes can compete at any open competition as long as there are no qualifying standards (e.g. Elite competitions) or limiting factors (e.g. age restriction) to enter.

Four times a year, the OWA runs club challenges. These competitions are held at participating clubs and are great for beginners as it allows athletes to get a feel for how a competition works, but on a smaller scale. See OWA Club Challenge.

Where can I learn proper technique?

You can contact any OWA-registered club. See OWA Club List.

Why are competition registration fees not standardized?

Registration fees are set by the hosting club to cover the costs of running the event. While the OWA sanctions the competitions, it is our clubs that are responsible for running each event.

How do I prepare for my first meet?

The OWA follows the current IWF Technical and Competition Rules and Regulations (IWF TCRR), except where otherwise noted. Refer to OWA Technical and Competitionon Rules (OWA TCR) for any changes we accept. See Information for Athletes.

Do I need to be certified in order to coach an athlete at competitions?

No, except Elite competitions. At Elite competitions, a coach must be at minimum NCCP Competition Introduction in training in order to receive accreditation to enter the warm-up area and Field of Play. For national or international competitions, a coach must be NCCP Competition Development Certified. See Course Descriptions.

How can I become a certified weightlifting coach?

The first step is to take the NCCP Competition Introduction Technical Course. See Course Descriptions and Courses & Evaluations for scheduled courses.

I’m interested in hosting a course at my facility, what do I need to do?

Please contact our Competition Administrator at

How can I help out a competition?

You can volunteer by becoming a Technical Official. This is a great way for parents or family members to participate even if they aren’t athletes themselves. See Get Involved.