Lift off

11th January 2018

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Two Wadham women weightlifters have qualified for the national power-lifting championships after taking part in the regional competition in Birmingham.

  • Polly Thisdell (M.Chem Chemistry, 2015) takes part in the qualifying competition

    Polly Thisdell (M.Chem Chemistry, 2015) takes part in the qualifying competition

  • Eva Masmanian (Medicine, 2013)

    Eva Masmanian (Medicine, 2013)

  • Eva and Polly with weightlifters from Linacre College

    Eva and Polly with weightlifters from Linacre College

Eva Masmanian (Medicine, 2013) and Polly Thisdell (M.Chem Chemistry, 2015) qualified at the British Unequipped Full Power Championship regionals in November 2017. Organised by the British Drug Free Powerlifting Association, winners from this event go on to compete in national finals in July.

Both Eva and Polly have been with Wadham Weightlifting Club for several years, Eva from its conception in October 2015. They were pleasantly surprised to find a welcoming and unintimidating atmosphere at competition level.  

Polly commented: “The atmosphere at the event was not what I was expecting: it was welcoming, helpful, encouraging. Everyone was there to cheer you on! You compete according to your gender and your body weight so very few people are in your category and directly lifting against you – so everyone wants you to do well.”

Entering the competition gave her a target in the gym and winning has encouraged her to work harder and lift more.

Jessica Gillard (Medicine, 2013), President of Wadham Women‘s Weightlifting Club commented: “Powerlifting is not the macho intimidating arena it might have once appeared – even once you’re at regional competing level! We thoroughly encourage interested students and staff members to get involved at whatever level they’re comfortable with. For any student or staff member who partially or fully identifies as woman, we meet regularly to train with our professional coach Shez (generously funded by College) and on our own. Anyone can lift, no matter whether you’ve been sporty your whole life or just want to start now!”

Find out more about Wadham Women‘s Weightlifting Club here.