by Matt Slater
MAJA Hudej, who studies at the University of South Wales, won a gold medal in her first kettlebell competition.
The Wildlife and Conservation Management graduate, who is now studying at postgraduate level, is awaiting the official confirmation that she also broke the British record.
There are suggestions that, by comparing her results to her weight category in 2019, there is a chance of the record.
In the jerk event, Hudej was required to lift two 8-kilogram kettlebells for 10 minutes – she managed 153 reps.
She was then tasked with the snatch event, only an hour and a half after the jerk.
And managed 232 reps in 10 minutes in the latter.
Hudej was keen to express just how much her success meant to her.
“This is my first ever medal and I’m extremely happy. I was extremely nervous; I had only had two hours of sleep, but it was all worth it.
“I’m so proud of myself and I’m so grateful for all of the guidance I received.
“I can’t wait to do it all over again!”
The Slovenian was first introduced to the sport through her trainer, Marc Crowley.
“Marc got me interested as he started competing again. I was hooked by the specifically designed training. Through this, with my persistence and dedication, I got the medal I was after.
“I really got into it because it’s not just lifting; its balance, coordination, endurance, strength and stability of the whole body.”
“I need exercise to stay happy – especially during my studies. That’s why I got involved with the gym at the Treforest Sport Park.
Hudej is now training with 12-kilogram kettlebells and wants to compete again later in the year.
“Competing again is the logical step. I want to participate again, at least once this year, perhaps the GSU Scottish Championships.
“I know the competition is fierce in this category, but I will train even harder to get results that I am satisfied with”.
She was always interested in sport, with her dad being a national Paralympic athlete.
The kettlebell lifter was involved in her local athletics club, tennis club and equestrian in her youth, and that’s where her competitiveness blossomed.