'The best event yet' took place at Strength Academy Wales on Sunday as 60 teams took part in the Pembrokeshire Strength Festival. 

The event was multi generational and fully inclusive - as fathers teamed up with sons and daughters, and there were youth teams from aged 11, senior teams with some over the age of 60, and those new to strength training enjoyed both the social interaction and the competitive element of the festival.

“The atmosphere was totally inspiring with fantastic respect between all those taking part, throughout all abilities” said Simon Roach, event organiser and head coach at Strength Academy Wales.

“The purpose of the Strength Festival was to bring all types of people together to enjoy activities socially and also having a competitive format for those higher level athletes.

"But the main reason was to fund raise for Pembrokeshire Weightlifting’s new service in collaboration with a number of local charities and PAVS, preparing a referral programme to health, fitness and social prescribing. The programme is due to begin at the latter part of this year.

“I would really like to encourage anyone in Pembrokeshire who feels they may be disadvantaged in some way to complete our on line survey which will help us to shape our new service for the local community. The link can be found at our website home page.”

Overall, 16 lifting platforms created designated lifting areas for four disciples - the squat, bench press, deadlift and the clean and over head lift.

Teams consisted of male pairs, female pairs and mixed pairs, in two different age categories separating the junior competitors from the adult competitors. All teams were split into groups of four, each group completing one discipline at a time, having 45 minutes to warm-up as a group and to support and motivate each other to achieve a maximum lift. Groups rotated around the disciplines, recording their best lifts which made up the running total of all four disciplines. It was a fast paced and exciting event which began at 10am and lasted nearly three hours.


Senior Male pair teams 

1st Team Beard 780kg total. Adam James and Chris Shousha from SAW.

2nd Team Mr Brown Boys 690kg total. Calum Macdougall and Rory Brown from SAW.

3rd Team Sosban fach 678kg total. Matthew De Filipo and Jason Stephenson from Llanelli Weightlifting Club.

Senior Female pair teams

1st Team Deadlifts and Donuts 403kg total. Enlli Jones – North Wales and Claire Wright – London.

2nd Team Mochyns 360kg total. Stephanie Jones and Llyr Jenkins from Llanelli Weightlifting Club.

3rd Team Huns with Guns 317kg total. Mairi MacDougall and Tracy owen both from B-Fit.

Senior Mixed pair teams

1st Team Jim and Anita 550kg total. Jim Horner and Anita Madan from SAW.

2nd Team Miss fits 522kg total. Marc Davies from Pembroke and Ashleigh Barnikel from SAW.

3rd Team Boom shaka laka 505kg Total. Chloe hood and Jay Rogers from SAW.

Junior Male pair teams

1st Team The Props 400kg total. Kyle Colella and Dewi Jackson from SAW.

2nd Team Big and Bigger 397kg total. Tom Cabot and Kareem Bugby from South Pembs Weightlifting Club.

3rd Team Dan and Gabe 350kg Total. Daniel davies and Gabe Thicker from SAW.

Junior Female pair teams

1st Team We are Strong 324kg total. Seren Mitchell and Mena Williams from both SAW and South Pembs Weightlifting Club

Junior Mixed Pair teams

1st Team Ffion/Iolo 287kg total. Ffion Barnikel and Iolo Griffiths from both SAW and South Pembs Weightlifting Club

2nd Team The Muppets 269kg total. Lexi Thomas and Jack Bugby from South Pembs Weightlifting Club

Special awards 

Best newcomer: Niki MacDougall. 

Most improved junior: Bleddyn Gibbs.

Best lift of the day: Jason Stephenson.

The following companies were thanked for their help and sponsorship of the day - Pembrokeshire Leisure, Sport Pembrokeshire, PAVS, Local Giving, The VC Gallery, Absolute Performance, Unison Cymru Wales, People’s Postcode Lottery, JPI Apparel, RXBAR, COCOFuzion100, South Hook LNG, A.D Howells Haulage Contractor, Simon Rees Electrical, Jeff Bevan Plumbing and Heating, Radio Pembrokeshire, The Block and Barrel, Clerkenhill Adventure Farm, Blue Stone, The Love Spoon Workshop, Stems from Sarah, Pembroke Castle, Celtic Haven, Andrew Price, Heatherton, WP Lewis & Son, Dale Sailing.