By Claire Rightley | Social Media Editor
After coating her hands in a thin film of chalk, sophomore Maddie Roggy stepped up onto the platform and stared down the barbell sitting in front of her. Knowing she was required to lift a total of 194 lbs in order to qualify for National Youth Championship, she anxiously began her 123 lbs clean and jerk which would bring her total to 223 lbs. After successfully bringing the bar to her hips, she then lifted it onto her shoulders, and finally propelled it above her head and straightened her arms, completing her set and qualifying her for National Youth Championship.
Roggy said she considers her first qualification for this championship her best memory with weightlifting “because it just made me realize that I’m actually excelling a lot in this, and I could have a potential future in it.”
After around three years of Crossfit, Roggy decided to focus exclusively on Olympic weightlifting. Olympic weightlifting differs from Crossfit in the sense that in focuses exclusively on two types of lifts.
“[In] a clean, you take [the barbell] from the floor and basically you pick it up to a height where you can squat down with it and catch it on your shoulders, and then you stand up with it,” Roggy said. “Then once you get to there, it’s the jerk, and that’s just transferring it from your shoulders to a locked out position above your head.”
A snatch is a quicker movement that involves less steps than a clean and jerk.
“Snatch starts from the floor, wide grip, and basically the same movement as a clean, but you go straight from once it passes your hips to overhead down in a squat,” Roggy said.
Roggy said weightlifting has allowed her to focus on bettering herself since it is not a team sport.
“[Weightlifting] is so independent and really teaches values to use in everyday life,” Roggy said.
Over the course of three years at her Crossfit box, Roggy has made several friends and workout partners such as freshman Erin McLain.
McLain said because they are some of the few teenagers at that box, they “gravitated towards each other pretty quickly,” and their friendship and partnership persisted “because [Roggy] loved lifting, and I loved body movements. We keep the same pace for almost anything.”
As Roggy has become more weightlifting oriented and McLain continued to stick with Crossfit, their partnership has dwindled into a less frequent affair, but their friendship still remains, and McLain continues to admire Roggy’s dedication to the sport.
“Her drive and ambition is what I aim for as an athlete,” McLain said.
Roggy said she believes her lack of satisfaction in her lifts is what makes her a strong athlete. In a sense, she competes with herself and her own lifts.
“Even if there’s nobody better than me, like if I’m at the top of the top with weightlifting, I still want to work to be better,” Roggy said.
Roggy’s future plans are to competitively weightlift for as long as she can and then have a career in coaching.
“The community at gyms is probably the friendliest and most supportive, and I’d love to teach kids and help them improve and show them what they’re capable of doing,” Roggy said.
Videos submitted by Maddie Roggy
Video edited by Claire Rightley