The NHWLC began after a weekend weightlifting clinic in 2010, attended by a few of our founding coaches. Here, we met Gary Valentine, USAW Connecticut Weightlifting Committee President and Team CT Weightlifting Club Head Coach.. An amazing coach with a keen eye, Gary had a lifetime of experience and much knowledge to coach the best technique to our lifters and me. After that weekend, Olympic lifting classes at CFNH began. Gary encouraged us to really explore the idea of training at a competitive level. “OLY CLASS” was an early session before an afternoon CrossFit class one time each week.
As the lifting class size grew, it became clear that more sessions and more space was needed for our gym to meet demand of our lifters. In 2013, we broke through the wall into the 2000 ft. space, which is now the current home of NHWLC. Six platforms came about a year later, as did the KG weights and finally, a heating system. We established NHWLC club with USAW. Gary traveled up to our gym for clinics to give us some more in-depth coaching on how to be better coaches and lifters. A few of our lifters entered some local competitions. Very quickly we began to attract a regular membership of men and women with ages ranging from Juniors to Masters. As our membership grew, so did our equipment needs; adding what barbells and bumpers we could to train on.
Today we offer 2-hour class sessions every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday evenings as well as long Saturday morning sessions. All of our coaches at NHWLC are USAW certified and actively competing in their age divisions. They also offer private coaching and private programming for those looking to get into the competitive lifting arena or just add our strength and conditioning into their fitness. In addition, we offer a hugely successful Intro-to-Weightlifting program for novice lifters.
The NHWLC is now 30 lifters strong with 10 training competitively; a few of them hold state records. Our lifters have gone on to compete in Regional, State, National and International events including Collegiate Nationals, American Masters, National Masters and Pan American Masters.
In 2018, NHWLC will move to the District Athletic Club, and have a 15,000-square foot, new state of the art facility at 470 James Street. NHWLC will on continue its focus to provide elite coaching for competitive athletes and noncompetitive lifters. We hope to attract more to our lifting community from all reaches and keep growing this sport. NHWLC will raise the attention of the sport in the New Haven area with the goal to be recognized as a top training facility in the country. We would like to help further develop and promote weight lifting at a state and national level, hosting meets and events, provide outreach in the community and house qualified referees for all competitive events. Most importantly, we want our trained members to feel at home and encourage and support our athletes who have passed through our club’s doors.