Powering her way to victory


CINCINNATI — Young powerlifter, Hailey Daniels, conquered her weight class in the 2023 APF Cinci Women’s Pro Lifting Semi Finals.

On Sunday, April 16, 20 year-old Daniels, of Washington Court House, proudly wore a first place medal around her neck after lifting a massive total of 826.25 total pounds throughout several competitions. The young powerlifter managed to exceed all of her numbers from the previous year, with the “adrenaline rush” she felt from the crowd cheering her on that evening.

While still in high school, Daniels used her athleticism in both soccer and track. According to Daniels, she also grew up around a father who was an avid lifter. However, it wasn’t until her father, Tom Daniels, opened Impact Fitness in Hillsboro that she began to take a serious interest in working out.

Daniels said she initially began to workout with the intent of losing weight, which only lasted around a year. Daniels soon realized that lifting weights was something she truly enjoyed and started using her workouts to build strength in her body.

“When I started powerlifting, it made me feel strong and confident,” said Daniels. “Since then, I’ve been consistently powerlifting for about two years.”

So why did she decide to compete in the 2023 APF Women’s Pro/Am Lifting competition in Cincinnati?

“As I got more serious about lifting, I decided I’d like to try to compete,” she said. “I asked around and did some research, and that’s when I came across this event. I was intrigued because it was a women’s only event, and it was being run by Laura Phelps, who is an all-time powerlifter and holds five world records.”

According to Daniels, she saw pictures from the powerlifting event, and felt that the event was going to have “great energy” with “great people.”

After attending the event, she said her intuitions about it were correct.

“Participating in the event was such an adrenaline rush,” said Daniels enthusiastically. “The energy is insane, everyone there is so nice, and all of the girls cheer each other on. It’s like no other.”

As reported by Daniels, the Women’s Pro/Am lifting event consisted of three categories: Squat, Bench, and Dead lift. Each competitor is allowed three attempts per category.

For the Squat lift, Daniels opened with 259 pounds, then did 270 pounds, and ended with an incredible 292 pounds. She went on to open the bench press with 170.75 pounds, 181.75 in the second attempt, and then attempted to raise the weight to 192.75 pounds but was unable to lift it. However, she didn’t let her third bench press attempt get her down.

“I was so nervous and shaky after the bench press attempt,” said Daniels. “But I could still hear the crowd cheering me on faithfully, and that plus the adrenaline high is what helped the most.”

Daniels went on to open her third and final round, dead lifts, with a smashing 314 pounds. She added more weight in the second round with 330.5 pounds and absolutely crushed her final lift with a total of 352.5 pounds, which she claims was an “easy pull.”

The 20 year-old won first place in her weight group, and proudly wore a golden medal around her neck. Daniels also said she plans on continuing to compete in powerlifting in the near future.

No posts to display