top of page

Varney sets bar high for national success

WED. | 02-16-22 | SPORTS

     Rose sophomore Nathan Varney has a lot of weight to carry with the success he has presented in his weightlifting skills. Although Rose does not have a weightlifting team, Varney is a star athlete as he will attend youth nationals for weightlifting in July. 

     As Varney has been lifting for three years with his trainer Dave Kemble, his skills have improved and he has become a dedicated member of Kemble’s group. 

    “Four days a week after school, I go straight from Rose to the gym,” Varney said. “We have about an hour-and-a-half to two- hour-long practices.”

     Spending all of this time in the gym, Varney is offered with a variety of workouts to practice and improve on. 

     “Our workouts consist of the snatch, clean and jerk, back squat, front squat, bench press and others,” Varney said.

     Rose does not have a weightlifting team of its own, but this does not stop Varney from seeking out sources that the school provides to improve his technique.

     “This year I have taken the physical conditioning class and that has helped me with my back squat and bench press and other lifts like that, which improves the snatch and clean and jerk that I use in competition,” Varney said.     

     If Rose were to have a weightlifting team, Varney would definitely be a member of it, but he 


Contributed photo

acknowledges that having the team could become very expensive as each bar can cost between $1000 and $2000. 

     After training and working hard, Varney was able to attend a qualifying meet this past Saturday on Jan. 29 at the East Carolina University Recreation Center. The qualifications he met in this meet would send him on to nationals.

     “We measure our weight in kilograms so I had to get 190 kilograms total,” Varney said. “I snatched 82 kilograms and cleaned and jerked 108 kilograms, so that got me to nationals.” 

     As anyone might expect, nerves were felt before this meet. Varney was also excited because his whole family was able to come watch him. 

     “This has been my third meet and I am always nervous for every single one of them,” Varney said. “You’re just there by yourself with a whole crowd of people and once you get chalk out of the bucket you’re kinda set; everything goes blank.”

     Varney’s thought process while lifting in a competition is one that keeps him motivated throughout the meet. 

     “The whole sport is kind of a battle against yourself,” Varney said. “How much can you improve and how far can you get in the different events?”

     Prior to the competition, Varney set some personal goals. 

     “I almost made one of my goals which was to clean and jerk 120 kilos,” Varney said. “Other than that, I got my form back, I got everything settled and I finally have an understanding for all of the lifts.” 

      After seeing his hard work pay off as success at the qualifier and being advanced to the national level, Varney has set the bar high for himself so that he can be confident in his performance at nationals. He plans to master his 120 weight because he wants it to be the second weight that he does. 

      “I want to snatch at least 90 kilos, so I have some pretty big goals, but I have plenty of time to do it and I know I can do it,” Varney said.

bottom of page