Gloucester weightlifters Jessica Tea and Natalie Cashmore are preparing for the English Championship in January 2018, and are both hoping to place in at least the top ten in their respective categories.
With the rise in popularity of weightlifting, Tea knows that the competition is going to be a lot more difficult next year.
“Weightlifting is so much more popular now. In the first year I took part I came second in the English Championships, now even though I’ve improved, I’m coming just about top ten, but that is literally because so many girls are doing it now”
Jess also reflects about how, when she studied at the University of Gloucestershire seven years ago, there wasn’t an opportunity to join a weightlifting sports team and so it has really developed over the last few years.
“When I was at uni it wasn’t a big thing, I don’t even think they had a club, if they did I hadn’t heard of it, but now it’s huge because everyone is so much more interested in it.”
Jess’s teammate, Natalie Cashmore started the sport at CrossFit where she began classes and found she had a real knack for the sport.
Cashmore competed in the British Championships for the first time back in July and talks about her experience.
“It was nerve-wracking. But then I think that’s good for me because I’m very competitive so it was a good goal to get to and I qualified, but controlling your nerves is very difficult because they can get the better of you” said Natalie.
“We’re on a programme and I train with Jess, and it’s really good having a training partner. It’s just making sure to work at high intensity and lots of reps. I’ve currently snatched 64kg and clean and jerk is at 74kg, so I’m hoping to keep working on my technique to watch the numbers shoot up” added Natalie.
The English Championships are set to take place on the 21st and 22nd of July 2018 in Milton Keynes.