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Monday 17 June 2019

A lecturer has gone from wanting to improve her strength to winning a regional powerlifting competition, thanks to a Solent student she met through Solent PT.

The Solent PT programme gives Solent staff members the opportunity to train with BSc (Hons) Fitness and Personal Training students for 15 hour-long sessions, giving the students valuable experience while staff can improve their health goals. 

Aiden Clowes, in his third year on the course, was assigned to coach Catherine Phipps, who teaches sport education and development, in October 2018. Once their sessions ended, he offered to coach her through his new online business, Norsemen Coaching.

Catherine says: “I used to do some powerlifting recreationally in the gym, and when initially discussing my goals on a consultation with Aiden, we decided to work on this as it’s something I enjoy and he knew a lot about this area of training. I had no idea I wanted to compete at this time.”

When Aiden started training Catherine, he realised she had potential and continued to encourage her through a sustained personal training programme. He says: “We worked together for 10-12 weeks. At the beginning, Catherine had no intention of competing but I did my research and came to her saying that her lifting skills were impressive so she could do well.

“I’d already started to work on my business so offered to help. I planned her training programmes right up until the competition - we created a diet plan, worked together on rehab and sports massage, recovery, weight and calorie intake. We tracked everything and made minor adjustments as the weeks went on.”

Through training with Aiden, Catherine has now qualified for the national championships in Edinburgh in July, after winning the best overall unequipped female powerlifter across all weight divisions.

The experience of training Catherine has given Aiden valuable knowledge and confidence. He says: “It’s opened my mind up to want more – I was able to work across multiple disciplines, from psychology to sports massage, so this experience has opened up my target audience and what I’m able to do much more.”