Just one year ago, Emily-Jane was a weightlifting novice. Having only been involved in bodyweight sports previously, strength training was completely new to her. A year on, the New College student is celebrating after finishing first place in the British Equipped Powerlifting Championships in the Junior category.

In 2017 New College introduced a powerlifting programme as part of the Enrichment offer. Swindon Barbell delivered the sessions and saw students go from strength to strength each week. Emily-Jane decided to take up powerlifting after taking part in the enrichment and joined Swindon Barbell as a member.

The Swindon Barbell enrichment was such as success last year that it has returned for 2018. The sessions involve working on the 3 main compound lifts – squat, bench and deadlift. Students are also shown other exercises such as split squats. Speaking of her time taking part in the enrichment, Emily-Jane commented: “We were coached by some of Britain’s best powerlifters in form and technique when lifting.”

The high-level coaching and dedication from Emily-Jane led her to win, performing a 120kg squat, 55kg bench and 115kg deadlift on the day of the competition.
Emily-Jane said: “Swindon Barbell is a brilliant club full of expert coaches and most importantly some of the best people I know. Lifting has really made me so much more confident in myself, and helped me realise my body is capable of so much more than I thought it was.”

Emily-Jane has plans to continue powerlifting and will be training to enter the European Championships, taking place in May 2018. As well as continuing powerlifting, Emily-Jane has aspirations to go on to drama school. After completing her studies at New College, she aims to pursue her dream of being a professional actress.