Featured Athlete: Natalie Wilson


Provided by Natalie Wilson

Wingspan’s Featured Athlete for date is powerlifter, junior Natalie Wilson.

Emily Thomas, Staff Reporter

Wingspan: What does a typical powerlifting meet look like?

Wilson: “A typical powerlifting meet is pretty crazy. We have weigh-ins, then we get to warm up and start our lifts. The meets take a long time, about 2-3 hours. There are a lot of people running around changing, lifting, getting to their rack, and coaches getting to their positions.”

Wingspan: How does powerlifting differ from other sports you’ve participated in?

Wilson: “It is purely individual. I can’t rely on teammates to help me lift. it’s just me and the weight! there are still people to cheer me on but it’s not exactly the same.”

Wingspan: What’s something you guys are excited about going into the season?

Wilson: “Personally, I’m really excited to attempt heavier weights and get stronger. As a team, I believe we are very excited to have a ton of returners that are lifting as well as some newcomers!! a lot of teams had many seniors, so I feel like we definitely have an advantage.”

Wingspan: How do you prepare for such a short season? Is it stressful knowing you have such limited time?

Wilson: “We start to prepare a few weeks before our first meet. It’s really not much time to improve but we get a lot of work done. We all know that we need to work hard to improve as much as we can, it can be a lot on our bodies. It’s stressful because I love the sport but I only get to enjoy it for such a short time. Going to meets and meeting new people is a big part of my commitment to the sport, and I love it.”

Wingspan:What’s the most difficult part of powerlifting?

Wilson: “The most difficult part for me is definitely learning the commands. when your knees get to 90° on a squat your coach will yell up and that’s when you have to get up. On the bench you’ll bring it down to your chest, the judge will yell press and that’s when you try to push it up. for deadlift they will say down once you’ve lifted the bar and that’s when you drop it. It’s the hardest to hold the weight for me, waiting for the command to push back up keeps me on my toes.”

Wingspan: Do you think powerlifting gets enough recognition?

Wilson: “I don’t think so. It’s a hard sport, lifting heavy weights is hard to do. There was a girl at the regional meet in 2021 who squatted 500 pounds and that was insane. Instead of the football boys from prosper who had come to help us, she had grown men to spot her. All the work we put in commonly goes completely unrecognized and it’s frustrating. Putting so much work in by everyone on the team feels useless when we don’t get any support from our peers.”