Daniella Kelly to take on the world's best powerlifters at ProRaw

STRENGTH: Daniella Kelly at work in the
lead-up to ProRaw. Photo: BELINDA SOOLE

STRENGTH: Daniella Kelly at work in the lead-up to ProRaw. Photo: BELINDA SOOLE

What’s the secret to lifting more than 200 kilograms?

Just don’t think about it.

That’s how Daniella Kelly has gone from someone just seeking a bit of fitness to a world record holder in just over 18 months.

The local powerlifter has enjoyed a meteoric rise in the sport and later this week she will be in action at Melbourne at ProRaw 9, Australia’s biggest powerlifting event where the nation’s best takes on those from around the world.

And Kelly, who can squat 235kg, will be keeping her approach the same.

“It feels pretty insane,” she said of being able to lift incredible weight.

“When you’re moving those numbers you’re just thinking about the movement itself, not how much you’re moving so to other people who aren’t in the sport that would seem pretty crazy but for me its been a gradual build-up of that weight.”

It’s been gradual but successful for Kelly, who has risen so quickly she now travels to the Central Coast every fortnight to train with the Doom Squad team.

Making the move to that team has helped her prepare for ProRaw, a prestigious event which is invite-only for competitors around the world.

“I feel pretty privileged and humbled that I’ve been invited to attend and its really exciting,” Kelly said.

“I started one year and seven months ago...and that led me to the opportunity to do some powerlifting and since that time I’ve done three events and I’ve won three gold medals in that time.

..I broke two world records and even from then to now my numbers have improved. - Daniella Kelly

“From my last event, Revival, last year in November, from that I had someone who was watching send out an invite.”

The strong performance at Revival wasn’t just a one-off, with Kelly having already shown she has what it takes.

“In July last year I competed in GPC Nationals and that was a massive, eye-opening experience for me,” she said.

“There was some of Australia’s best there and during that event I broke two world records and even from then to now my numbers have improved.”

And Kelly is hopeful that improvement will peak at Melbourne, with ProRaw running from Friday to Sunday.

With a squat of 235kg, being able to bench press 82.5kg and performing a deadlift at 205kg, Kelly is already a standout in the sport.

“I’m hoping at Pro Raw my squat will hit 250, bench press 85 or 87.5 and the dead lift I’m hoping for 215kg,” she said.

Kelly is an example of how much powerlifting has taken off and grown within Dubbo in recent times.

Regular competitions are now held around the city and for Kelly, she’s gone from starting locally to training four times a week and now within reach of achieving her goal.

“Basically my goal is to be the best of the best, if I’m being honest,” she said.

“I know I have a long way to go and there’s some pretty amazing girls out there moving huge numbers but I’m enjoying the journey.”

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