Victoria Hypes and the NMT Powerlifting Team

Victoria Hypes and the NMT Powerlifting Team

If you wait until you're "ready" you'll never start, which would be such a shame! - Victoria Hypes

Do you enjoy competing? Want to see what you’re capable of? Need more motivation to get to the gym? Then consider powerlifting, an emerging sports club at Tech.

Powerlifting is a strength sport which involves three types of lift: squat, bench press, and deadlift. When competing, lifters have three attempts for each type of lift to try to lift the most weight. The sum of the maximum weights lifted for each gives the total score, which is used to determine the winner. But there is a lot more to powerlifting than just moving heavy things. To learn more about the sport, the formation of a team, and the upcoming Ladies Powerlifting Workshop, I talked to the student behind it all: Victoria Hypes.

Hypes is a chemical engineering senior who has been doing powerlifting for about a year. She has competed in two meets so far, and her next meet is the USA Powerlifting Collegiate National Championships. In April in Columbus, Ohio, she will be lifting alongside 1100 other athletes from around the country. To prepare, she trains six days a week and is always thinking about how to recover more effectively, which she says is “what really matters” to become stronger.

Not only is Hypes extremely dedicated to her own training, she has been working hard to share her love of the sport with other Techies. Even though she is graduating in May, she is trying to put a NMT Powerlifting Team together and has been a great mentor for other students. So far, there are three team members, all of whom had their first meet just last week where “they did awesome”! Michael Diswood and John Bradshaw both made 7 of their 9 lifts, and Cole Dunning made 8 of his 9 and set a state record in the deadlift for his weight class. All three set lots of personal records, which, as Hypes says, is what it’s all about.

“The gym is the only thing in life where you get out exactly what you put in, and there's no way to cheat it,” she explains. “It’s very much you versus yourself.” But, as Hypes embodies, the powerlifting community is extremely supportive. The network online and on social media is inspiring, and when you go to a meet “the energy is indescribable… it’s always a pleasure to step on the platform.”

The gym can be an intimidating place, though, especially later in the day when it is full of big, burly weightlifters. And it can be difficult to start a sport like powerlifting if you don’t know what you’re doing. This is a shame because “there is so much for women to gain through strength training.” So to help, and in conjunction with International Women’s Month, Hypes is holding a women’s powerlifting workshop. It is Saturday, March 30th from 9 to 11 am in the weight room. Prior sign up with the gym is required.

The workshop will cover the history and importance of powerlifting, and include how to properly squat, bench press, and deadlift. All levels are welcome! It is open only to women in an attempt to help everyone feel more comfortable. However, Hypes stressed that she is also very willing to hold another co-ed workshop, so any men who are interested should let the gym know.

So, if you’re considering powerlifting, go to the workshop or just try it! “If you wait until you're "ready" you'll never start, which would be such a shame!” Hypes says. And you just might find you love it, like she did.

~Evelyn Byrd

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