The Wait for Weightlifting at the Games

Monday, July 28, 2014 Singapore Sports Stories 2 Comments


It will be Lewis Chua Yong Hwee’s first games when he represents Singapore in the Glasgow Commonwealth Games 2014 Men’s Weightlifting

Singapore Weightlifting Federation, Commonwealth Games, Glasgow, Solitude of Strength
Battle with Barbells: Lewis Chua used to live in New Zealand where he was first introduced to weightlifting. He now represents Singapore in competitive weightlifting and owns a gym which he hopes will help developing youth athletes here. Photo: Singapore Sports Stories
He’s 22, but he has been weightlifting competitively for eight years. A journey strewed with championships and national opens, many of which he medalled in. Come Jul 31, 2014, when Chua grips the bar in the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC) Precinct for the XX Commonwealth Games, it will mark his first competitive outing at a games.

The burly national athlete and gym owner is looking forward to his debut in which he will compete in the Men's +105kg category. “This games are pretty big because I’ve always missed out on games, whether it’s injury or not qualifying.” said Chua. Chua qualified for the Commonwealth Games after his 316kg lift in March this year at the Singapore National Open Weightlifting Championship exceeded the minimum set by Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) by 4kg. 

The lift is also a personal best and he is aiming to better it in Glasgow. “I’m looking at 320, 325(kg). I don’t know how far that would be or what it is but whatever it’s worth. It’s a lifetime improvement and I’m hoping maybe top four, top five placing, that would be good.” said Chua.

In the lead up to the games, Chua was in Hainan, China, for a three-week training camp, where he had three hours sessions, twice a day, six times a week. Singapore Weightlifting Federation's  President Tom Liaw said the camp was for athletes to peak for the Commonwealth Games. In China, Chua focused on a lot of repetitive movements under his coach, Wu Chuan Fu’s guidance whom he credits for his weightlifting career. “He changed my level of competitiveness from national level to an international level and now a world rank level. The past five or six years have been pretty intense.” Chua said. 

The China training camp proved to be sort of a getaway for Chua. “(It was) a lot of stress relief, I can basically just concentrate on the sport. Rather than having to run places, run work.” Chua said.

GIVING BACK

Like his sport, Chua’s work revolves around weights. He owns Solitude of Strength, a training centre located in Aljunied and is also a trainer there. He believes athletes of sports that require strength and conditioning will benefit from weightlifting.

"I want to give back to the community by opening this place.” Chua said. Solitude of Strength opened last September and allows junior national athletes to train and receive guidance from trainers for free. “If they can prove they are carded then they can come to use this facility and my coaches will be more than happy to help them or guide them for free. It wouldn’t cost them anything. It’s going to be easier to help the up and coming generation in sport.”

While the future of Singapore sports benefit from opportunities like this, present athletes like Chua will be hoping to excel at the Commonwealth Games. For Chua, he will be relishing his first games. “It has been a long journey, considering March till now, it has been tiring but now it’s just resting, recovering and getting ready for the games. It will be good; it will be a good games.”

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2 comments:

  1. Good to see, weightlifting is one of the sports that truly demonstrates athletes power. And very correct on the fact that strength & conditioning is required in almost all sports. Reason why Germany won the world cup there, they utilized it. Good Luck!

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