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BWL Debuts at Turf Games

On Saturday, 15 June, British Weight Lifting (BWL) sent a team to compete in the Turf Games for the first time.

BWL Debuts at Turf Games

The event, held in Ealing, brought together competitors from various strength and fitness disciplines, marking a significant step for BWL in integrating more closely with the CrossFit and Functional Fitness communities.

A Day of Firsts and Fun

For the BWL team, this debut was both exhilarating and challenging. Naomi Howell Sivosh, one of the competitors, shared her excitement and the camaraderie experienced during the event. "It was awesome to represent BWL at Summer Turf Games. As a part-time CrossFitter and part-time weightlifter, I love bringing the two sports and communities together. Despite a few torrential downpours, no max lift event, and generally being rather out of breath, we had a lot of fun and got stuck in! Super proud of the team!

2023 Commonwealth Championships Gold Medallist Niamh Collins, another team member, echoed these sentiments. "Having the chance to be part of the BWL team at Turf Games was incredible! I was quite nervous before the comp as I hadn’t ever done any CrossFit style competitions before, but everyone in the team was so helpful and supportive throughout the entire day. It was such an amazing experience to cheer each other on and push each other in the workouts. It was a really tough day but it was so much fun and I would love to get back out there and do it all over again!

Vision and Leadership

The participation of BWL in the Turf Games was spearheaded by Jenny Tong, BWL Non-Executive Director and Chair of the Athletes Committee. Though she did not compete due to injury, Jenny was instrumental in conceptualising and assembling the team. Her vision for the collaboration between CrossFit and weightlifting was clear: "The CrossFit and functional fitness spaces have been a significant source of talent for our sport in recent years. When I began my role as BWL NED for Athlete Experience, part of my vision was to support the organisation in increasing its visibility across the strength and fitness industry, providing more opportunities for athletes, and exploring new avenues to grow our membership base.

"Sharing in this vision, BWL has made great strides in partnering with the UK's major CrossFit and fitness events, and it felt like the next step was for us as weightlifters to get involved directly. Sending BWL's first-ever team to Turf Games marks a huge milestone for us and served as a fantastic opportunity to showcase the breadth, depth, and abilities of our membership. The team was comprised of international lifters, club owners, national champions, coaches, and functional fitness athletes— a true representation of the BWL 2.0 vision. This participation underscores our commitment to bridging the gap between weightlifting and functional fitness, fostering a stronger, more inclusive community within the strength and fitness realm."

Looking Ahead

The enthusiasm and success at Turf Games have set a positive precedent for future events. As the British Championships approach on 5-7 July at NEC Birmingham, BWL looks forward to another exciting competition, this time alongside the Strength in Depth UK Championships 2024. The continued collaboration between CrossFit and weightlifting promises to bring more opportunities for athletes and fans alike, strengthening the community and pushing the boundaries of what can be achieved together.


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