Select Page

Powerlifting: Raising The Bar Against Feminine Stereotypes

Powerlifting: Raising The Bar Against Feminine Stereotypes
William Bowkett

Bill is the Website News Editor for InQuire. He's currently doing a BA in politics, and therein lies his interest. If you’re looking to break regular news online, both locally and nationally, drop him an email at

What if I told you I knew someone who could deadlift twice their body weight and squat 107.5 kilos? If your first impression is that this is a male athlete, then you couldn’t be more wrong. The person I am describing is a female, the captain of the UKC powerlifting team, Ana Re. Powerlifting is commonly thought of as a sport for males who can lift an enormous amount of weight, but it’s really a sport is also full of amazing, strong, and dedicated female athletes.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Ana as well as Shona Hughes, the president of the UKC powerlifting team. Despite their talent, their journey to where they are now was by no means easy. Before discovering powerlifting, Shona had been struggling with personal conflicts, and wanted to make herself a stronger person. Through her boyfriend and the UKC powerlifting society, Shona was introduced to the sport, and has been in love with it ever since. Ana found out about powerlifting when she first attended this University. She saw an advertisement for a new powerlifting team, and was immediately intrigued. She soon found her new passion. Powerlifting is a mental challenge as well as its physical one, while their bodies are capable of lifting heavy weights, they wouldn’t be able to if they weren’t in the right mindset.

Powerlifting hasn’t just allowed Ana and Shona to excel athletically, it has also provided them with significant life skills. Shona describes how this sport gives her life purpose and structure, something she hadn’t found in other sports. Ana simply enjoys having something to look forward to, whether it’s a competition or a chance to improve her lifts. While most athletes tend to struggle with balancing academics, athletics, and a social life, Ana and Shona have actually been able to maintain a balanced lifestyle, and excel in all three and because of their true love for this sport, they have surrounded themselves with people who share the same passions and the same goals.

When asked how being female empowers them as athletes, Ana and Shona stated that breaking the norm of what is expected from women has been the most valiant moment in their careers. Initially, male powerlifters looked down on them, and made discouraging remarks about how females are too weak and too powerless to compete the sport. When posting videos about their personal best lifts and competitions on social media, they received negative comments telling them that they were using improper form, lifting too heavy, and not engaging in typical female activities. These remarks only motivated Ana and Shona to continue to prove themselves through hard work, and dedication. They proved to themselves, and to thier peers, that they could raise the bar, and be successful in a sport generally dominated by men.

Ana and Shona demonstrate superb leadership skills, and the team truly thrives under their support and encouragement. Several athletes have recorded their best lifts yet with Ana’s guidance and encouragement, and as a team, they are continuing to improve every day. Shona and Ana are the definition of what being a leader means; they are the ideal role models for any aspiring female athletes.

About The Author

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Tweets