The World Strongman Federation in partnership with the World Ethnosport for the first time held competitions in the discipline of ethnosport-strongman in the program of the first International Strongman Games in Khiva. The games were held with the support of the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for the development of tourism.
The first International Strongman Games were held at the Ichan-Kala UNESCO World Heritage Architectural Monument and were dedicated to the memory of the medieval poet and wrestler Pakhlavon Mahmud (1247–1326).
The mausoleum of Pahlavon Mahmud was visited by participants and guests of the tournament before the start of the competition.
Abdulaziz Akkulov, Chairman of the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for Tourism Development, said at the opening of the games that this tournament would be annual.
Vladislavs Redjkins, Chairman of the World Strongman Federation and Vice-president of the World Ethnosport, said that the first International Strongman Games became a prologue to several tournaments to be held in Uzbekistan over the next two years.
The competition was attended by 15 strongest athletes from 12 countries – Australia, Brazil, China, Greece, India, Iran, Russia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Japan. The winner of the first International Strongman Games in Khiva was Pavlo Kordiyaka from Ukraine.
The ethnosport-strongman discipline was represented by five traditional competitions – carrying an anchor, raising a stone, holding columns and swords, as well as athletes loaded a cart and pulled, harnessed to it. All equipment was original and therefore exercises with it represented a special challenge for athletes.