Athlete Bio – Joan Swart

Joan Swart World Masters 2019

Name (as you would like it to appear online).
Joan Swart
Weight Class
63 kg
Where do you live?
South Africa
Squat PR:
97.5 kg (official)
Bench PR:
70 kg (official)
Deadlift PR:
137.5 kg (official)
Clean & Jerk PR:
Snatch PR:
Years lifting?
How did you come to powerlifting or Olympic lifting?
I was interested to start competing as a master athlete.
Do you have any previous athletic or lifting experience?
Mostly track & field and ultra-distance road running.
Do you compete? Why or why not? If you compete, what do you like most about the competitions?
I have competed in IPF events in South Africa and the World Masters Championships.
Equipped or Raw?
Do you have a coach or trainer? In person or online? How did you find your trainer/program? Do you have any advice for women looking for a trainer?
I am coached online by Nick Benerakis of If possible, look for local gyms and trainers specializing in powerlifting in your local area.
Where do you train? Gym, garage?
I train in my local Virgin Active gym and do the technical work in the high performance area of the University of Stellenbosch.
What is the hardest part about beginning lifting as an older woman?
Getting used to the attention when lifting heavy in gear! Achieving a good balance between recovery and effort.
How has lifting affected your health?
Lifting definitely improved my mental and physical condition overall, as well as nutrition.
What would you tell women just beginning this journey?
Just do it! And never be afraid to ask.