BGWLC are proud to have Charlie Shotton-Gale run a one-off equipped workshop. Places still available, contact Martin Bass.



Congratulations to Dapo and Moa (juniors) on being selected to represent Great Britain at the World Classic Powerlifting Championships 5th-17th June 2018 Calgary, Canada.

EUROPEAN MASTERS CHAMPIONSHIPS 6th to 10th March 2018 Helsingborg, Sweden

This year, BGWLC have three lifters selected to compete for Great Britain – Thomas Celestin (105kg) , Ernie and June. They will be joined by current World Masters M2 (93kg) champion Robert Rodney. This is the first European Powerlifting championships and will be held in  Helsingborg, Sweden over the course of this week, we wish the lifters much success.

Full results will be available on the EPF website


International Powerlifting Coaches UK

Renowned powerlifting coach and current manager of the GBPF British seniors team, Lawrence Farncombe, has put together a list of the top powerlifting coaches in the UK. We are proud to announce that our powerlifting coach, Martin Bass, is on this list, reflecting his success at both national and international level.

If you are in or near London and are serious about powerlifting, come and see us for some of the best coaching in the country. If you’re not near London, take a look at Coach Farncombe’s list to find a great coach near you.

International Powerlifting Coaches UK

Coaching Session at Homerton Hospital

Modern Physiotherapists are increasingly interested in what they can do to help more athletic populations recover – not just regaining basic mobility, but returning to fully active lifestyles and even to competition. One part of that process is the prescription of exercise, and a growing number of Physios are interested in the role that heavy weight training can play.

Of course, in order to prescribe effectively they first need to have practical experience of their own.

One Physio with an active interest in lifting is Fredy Markovits, of Homerton Hospital in Hackney. Fredy has been training with us at Bethnal Green for some time and since his department has acquired some good basic barbell kit, Fredy has been teaching the core Power lifts to other members of staff.

Last Wednesday, a group of coaches and lifters from BGWLC responded to Fredy’s invitation and spent an evening coaching the Physio team.


We were made very welcome by the 20 Physios in attendance. They were an enthusiastic and attentive group with a real range of experience. We organised them into groups and worked on squat and deadlift. We saw some excellent efforts and all of the Phsyios had an excellent training mindset. Inevitably, the deadlift session got a bit competitive…

Of course, working with such large groups meant it was impossible to give each trainee as much individual attention as the coaches would have liked. However, in the time we had, we were able to give some useful direction and see marked improvements in technique. It probably helped that as Physios, the technical aspects of lifting were already well understood and we were able to focus on the practicalities of getting under the bar.

There were also some excellent questions after the practical session – one or two of which made us think pretty hard!

As coaches, we felt we got a lot from it – it was interesting to work with so many novices  in close succession and we were able to see a real range of approaches to the lifts.

We were also pleased that a number of those taking part expressed an interest in visiting the club – we hope to see them down at Bethnal Green some time soon!

All in all, an enjoyable experience we’d be happy to repeat.

Thanks to Fredy for organising this and to Martin, Alan, Diego and Neal for giving up their evenings to coach.

2014 Greater London Championships – report

GBPF Greater London Powerlifting Championships – Saturday 22nd November 2014

By Martin Bass; photos by Dave McWilliams.

BGWLC packed with spectators

BGWLC packed with spectators

We held the Greater London Champs with over 60 Lifters competing overall; 16 plus 1 guest represented the BGWLC.

5 men were competing for the first time, 2 of whom – Mike and Jason – were trying to qualify for the British Masters Champs. I will try to keep this article brief otherwise, with 17 Lifters, it could be a lengthy report!

We had 3 ladies competing, Rachel 52s M1, Laura and Orla both 72s.

RACHEL SMITH: 65(pb)/32.5/87.5 – Total: 180kg
LAURA PORTER: 95/52.5(pb)/120(pb) – Total: 267.5kg(pb)
ORLA KAYE: 82.5(pb)/55(pb)/102.5(pb) – Total: 240kg(pb)

Mike Denzil

Mike Denzil

All the ladies did well, with a sprinkling of personal bests. Rachel a 65kg squat; Laura a 52.5kg bench press and a big 120kg deadlift, plus total; and Orla a full house – squat, bench press, deadlift, total just falling 5kgs short of qualifying for the British Ladies. Next time!

5 Men were competing for the first time.

WADE LEE: 83s (b/wt 77) 157.5/105/180 – Total 442.5kg

NIZANIEL BUERY: 83s 147.5/140/210 – Total 497.5kg

MIKE DENZIL: 83s M1 150/107.5/190 – Total 447.5kg

JASON JACKSON: 83s M1 160/122.5/215 – Total 497.5kg

SAHEED MAHOOD: 93s 157.5/95/210 – Total 470kg

All the boys did very well with both the M1s qualifying for the British Masters next year. A special note for young Wade, who technically is very good showing plenty of potential.

Next up, James McDonald, making a come back at 74s, coming down from 83s.

JAMES MCDONALD: 74s 120/90/160 – Total 370kg

Good weights from James, with more to come at this bodyweight.

Alan Joseph

Alan Joseph

We had 2 other Masters Lifters, Alan 83s M1 (M2 next year) and Didier 93s M1.

ALAN JOSEPH: 83s M1 150/115/230 – Total 495kg

Alan has been carrying an injury so a qualifying total was all that was needed. (Get fixed Al!)

DIDIER KAN: 93s M1 205(pb)/115/215(pb) – Total 535kg(pb)

A very good performance from Didier.

In the 93s Seniors we had Ivan, Frederick and Anthony.

IVAN OTIM: 93s 190/120/257.5 – Total 567.5kg(pb)

FREDERICK ANNAN: 93s (85.3 – eat more Fred!) 190/157.5/245 – Total 592.5kg(pb)

ANTHONY UNG: 93s 200(pb)/120(pb)/250(pb) – Total 570kg(pb)

Anthony had looked good training with Steve lately and the numbers reflected this. Personal bests all round making up for the disappointment of missing the British.

We had 2 105s, Thomas plus a bigger Reece coming up from the 93s.

REECE SMITH: 105s 215(pb)/145/255(pb) – Total 615kg(pb)

6 months at this body weight will see Reece’s numbers climb.

THOMAS CELESTIN: 105s 242.5(pb)*/120/312.5(pb)* – Total 675kg(pb)*

*These pbs reflect Tom’s numbers since his shoulder surgery. As you can see the bench is still a work in progress.

Big Dave lifted as a guest and did very well.

DAVE RYGIELSKI: 120s (114) 205/140/250 – Total 595kg

As usual all our Lifters did well for the Gym. Thanks to our two new refs, Laura and Neal who did a good job, and also to the loaders, supporters and everyone who mucked in to tidy up afterwards ready for the BodyMASS Regional Competition that we hosted the next day.

Thanks to all.


See more photos from the competition on our Facebook page!

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Greater London Championships 2014 – start list

Photo by Dave McWilliams

Photo by Dave McWilliams

The GBPF 2014 Greater London championships are being held at BGWLC on Saturday 22nd November.

Women & all men up to 83kg – weigh-in 8-9.30am; lift-off 10am
All men 93kg+ – weigh-in 12-1.30pm, estimated lift-off 2pm

The start list is below. If you believe the list to be incorrect, contact the organiser, Gary Bellinger, on 0782 4411448



Rachel SMITH

Laura Jayne WILTON
Melissa WELDON





Lawrence THOMAS

Michael HAYES

Kent NG
Lewis BALL
Wade LEE
Nizaniel BEURY
Adrian BALL
Didier KAN

Antony UNG
Frederick ANNAN
Daniel Ben CHORIN
Jonathon TURNER

Stephen McKIBBEN
Steven KING


Nicholas EDMONDS

2014 British Men’s Classic – report

By Martin Bass

GBPF British Men’s Unequipped Championships – 4th & 5th October 2014, Astor College, Dover

Five Lifters competed at this year’s British Championships.

Leo Doubble 83s
Dave McWilliams 93s (U/23)
Louis Bichard 93s (U/23)
Ivan Otim 93s
Reece Smith 93s

Leo lifted on Saturday afternoon and the others on Sunday morning.




Squat – An easy opener of 175kg was followed by an equally good 180k. A third attempt at 185kg for a PB was successful, so off to a good start.

Bench – 115kg to open followed by a tough 120kg. 125.5kg for his third was missed after a good fight.

Deadlift – Leo hasn’t pulled heavy much lately so we were hoping he would be fresh for his Deadlift. A good solid opener of 215kg was followed by an even better 225k (his previous best). So a PB attempt of 230kg for his third was asked for. 230kg done!!!

Leo had a good day as it is not easy pulling a PB Deadlift after also getting a PB Squat. Leo was due a good day and deserves his success due to the hard work he has put in.



The 93s would be in two flights, Juniors and sub-Juniors first group then Seniors in the second group. P/L competitions work on a round-robin system ie. a group may have two or three flights; every flight Squats, followed by Bench then Deadlifts. For the Lifter this means he or she could quite easily have an hour or more between Squat, Bench Press etc. The ability to be able to switch on and off between lifts is not always easy, but it needs to be done so as to save energy for the work ahead. One of the things that I have observed over the years is that invariably the better lifters are able to cope with this (it’s not like training in the gym). PBs at National Competitions are not easy and have to be worked for.


Dave had set himself some targets and was hoping to achieve them. He is a good trainer and always puts in a shift when at the gym. We would see whether his work would pay off.


Squat – An easy opening of 175kg was followed with a solid 185kg for his second. 195kg for his third and, if successful, a PB. Plenty of speed and aggression from the bottom gave him a very strong 195k PB (more to come).


Bench – Dave was looking for 135kg, so we shall see. An easy 125kg opener was followed with an easy 130kg for his second attempt. 135kg for his third was missed so he had to settle for 130kg.

Deadlift – The Deadlift is not Dave’s strongest lift but he has persevered and is beginning to make progress. An easy 205kg was followed by pretty hard 220kg. This was a PB and took plenty of work to get it. 2.5kg was added for his third attempt but was not completed.

Dave’s reward for some good lifting and solid training was PBs is the Squat, Deadlift and Total (well deserved).


Louis has just returned to Uni, so I was interested to see whether it had affected his lifting.


Squat – A good solid opener of 180k was followed by even better 190kg. 200kg for his third attempt and if successful, a PB. Plenty of effort was required – and given. Three White Lights from the Refs and the 200kg was his.


Bench – 122.5kg for his opener followed by a second of 127.5k. 130kg for this third was missed, so Lou had to settle for 127.5kg.

Deadlift – At the English Louis had to work really hard for his PB and today would be no different. A 215kg opener wasn’t as comfortable as he would have liked so 220kg for his second. This was better but to me Louis was starting to look a bit tired, so we left the last call for his Deadlift up to him. He fancied a go at 235kg for a PB attempt. A good attempt it was but, unsuccessful. Louis’ reward for the day; a PB Squat at the National Championships! (Louis weighed under 90k so with a bit more b/wt, more to come!)


Squat – We were hoping for a good Squat from Ivan as his training has been going well. 180kg should have been an easy opener, but due to him not warming up properly, he had to take it sooner than he would have liked. He failed 180kg on depth so he took it again for his second. This time he was successful. 190kg for his third and a PB attempt. Ivan has a problem keeping his chest up when he squats and this always makes it difficult for the centre Judge to see his depth. The centre Judge ruled him out (on depth), but fortunately both the two side Judges gave him White Lights. Two whites, one red, was good enough, so PB Squat for Ivan.


Bench – Ivan’s levers are not the best for Benching, (long long arms) but he always gives his best. An opener of 110kg was followed by a steady 117.5kg. 120kg for his third was missed so on to the Deadlift.

Deadlift – In July Ivan pulled a PB 265kg and looked fast then. It will be interesting to see what he had today. An opener of 235kg was put away so 255kg for his second was asked for. This was not as fast off the floor as I would have hoped for and although successful, Ivan was starting to look tired. A last big effort was required to get a third attempt of 267.5kg and a new PB. It came off the floor strong but slow and faltered at Ivan’s thighs. As much as he tried he couldn’t finish the lift so had to settle for 255kg. Ivan’s reward for the day; A PB Squat and Total.



Reece last competed at the English posting a 585kg Total. He had set himself a target of 600kg today and was determined to get it.


Squat – A good opener of 195kg was followed with 205gk. The 205kg pushed him forward slightly resulting in him to having to fight hard to get it. Reece has recently changed from flats to boots with heels so he needs to get used to the slightly different position he finds himself in when squatting. A third attempt for a PB 210kg was asked for. This time Reece set himself up better with a more solid upward drive – perfect! Three Whites and a very good squat.

Bench – Reece was hoping for 145kg today as this number keeps eluding him. 135kg to start was followed with a hard 140k. 142.5kg for his third was missed so Reece had to settle for 140k.

PBs in competitions especially National Championships are hard to find as the time between lifts and the additional stress cannot be duplicated in every-day training.

Deadlift – To achieve his 600kg total Reece would need a 10kg increase on his best Deadlift. The weights in the warm up had felt heavy working up to 220kg. Reece is developing in to a good competition lifter so we gave him 235kg for his opener- all good. 245kg for his second was very strong and successful. All or nothing for his third, 250kg on the bar for a 600kg total and a 10kg increase on his best Deadlift. Reece really got after the weight and was rewarded with three Whites. A good good day, PB Squat, Deadlift and Total.


All the boys lifted exceptionally well. Preparing for a National Championship involves watching your weight, coping with your nerves, getting up early then lifting, not always when you’re ready but when you are told to go. It is not easy. So all credit to the lifters who take part; it is not like hitting PBs in the gym!

Thanks to Laura and Anna for making the journey to support the boys along with Anthony who was supposed to lift but missed the weigh-in. Also Big Dave for helping with the warm up and Chris who also had a lifter of his own.


Next up the Greater London’s on the 22nd November. See you there.


All photos © Dave McWilliams

2014 British Women’s Classic – report

This year Bethnal Green hosted the Ladies’ Championship and the place was heaving. 60 plus ladies were to lift including four from Bethnal Green.

Rachel Smith 52s
Tiffany Annan 57s
Laura Porter 72s
Anna Macnab 84+


Squat – This was only Rachel’s second competition and she was nervous. She opened with 60kg which was successful. 65kg next was missed and also missed again on her third attempt.

Bench – An easy opener of 32.5kg was followed yet again with two misses of 35kg. Not the best of starts at your first championship, but the deadlift was to come and maybe a PB could be had!

Deadlift – A good solid opener of 85kg was followed by 90kg for an equally good second. 95kg was put on the bar for a PB third attempt which Rachel pulled really well. A 7.5kg increase ended her day on a good note. From a pretty poor start Rachel still managed a PB deadlift and total. So you never know!


Tiffany Annan

Tiffany Annan

Squat – Three good squats resulting in a PB of 102.5kg was a great start to her competition.

Bench – An easy opener of 50kg was followed by two misses of 52.5kg leaving her with just her opening Bench (she was not happy!)

Deadlift – A good solid opener of 115kg was followed by a very strong 122.5kg for a good PB. 127.5kg for the third attempt proved just too heavy on the day. A good day for Tiff, PBs in the squat, deadlift and total with, I’m sure, more to come.

Tiffany’s coach, Frederick Annan, is doing a good job – keep it going Fred!

See all of Tiffany’s lifts on YouTube.

Tiffany Annan - 122.5kg deadlift

Tiffany Annan – 122.5kg deadlift


Squat – Laura opened with a fairly comfortable 90kg. This was followed with an even better 95kg second attempt. She has spent a long time hoping to get 100kg squat, so third attempt 100kg was taken. Success! And a very happy lifter.

Laura deserves much credit for her attitude and perseverance and is a good example for all, showing what can be achieved over time.

Bench – 47.5kg to open was followed by two misses of 50kg. Laura’s Bench is always and bit hit and miss, and today was no exception.

Laura Porter - 117.5kg deadlift

Laura Porter – 117.5kg deadlift

Deadlift – Laura has missed a few deadlifts by losing her grip on one hand and has been doing a bit of grip work to try and remedy this. A very easy 110kg opener was followed by a strong 115kg which was her previous best. 117.5kg for her third attempt and a possible PB if her grip held. It did. A solid 117.5kg and she was pleased.

Although nervous all week, she still achieved PBs in squat, deadlift and total. Not a bad day’s work.


Anna had been looking strong in training in the last few weeks so we were hoping for good numbers.

Squat – A good solid opener of 172.5kg set Anna up for a 180kg British record attempt on her second. This she completed better than the 172.5kg. A big big 185kg was put on for her third. A tight controlled descent, a strong upward drive, 185kg for a new British record!

Anna Macnab - 180kg deadlift

Anna Macnab – 180kg deadlift

Bench – A 77.5kg first attempt was followed by a hard 82.5kg. 85kg for the third was missed (work to be done).

Deadlift – We thought Anna would hit some good numbers in the squat, but with the deadlift we were not so sure. We brought her opener down to 170kg and this was completed successfully. A bit more speed was needed for the 180kg second attempt which she achieved. A British record attempt of 185.5kg for her third was asked for. This would require all Anna had left, especially at the top/lockout. Her determination was good and a very hard pull saw her successfully complete the lift.

What a day! Three PBs, squat, deadlift and total – all British records and British Champion. For Anna these numbers are starting to become very good and if she continues to improve the Worlds next year might be interesting.

See Anna’s lifts on YouTube.

All the ladies lifted very well, with a selection of PBs for each of them.

Laura, coach Martin & Anna

Laura, coach Martin & Anna

I would like to thank all the boys who helped with the loading: Reece, Dominic, Louis, Alec, Ryan, Chris, Diego, and Big Dave. And a special thanks to Neil for coming to the gym and sorting out the audio equipment on Saturday morning.

Next up – the British Men’s Unequipped in two weeks!


All photos © Grant Hendry-Horne.