Strong in Body, Heart & Soul

Most people don’t expect a 13-year-old to be a champion weightlifter, but Chassity Del Balso isn’t a typical eighth grader at Concordia Junior High School. She recently placed first in her age and weight category in the 2023 USA Weightlifting National Youth Championships. She also finished as the fifth best overall female lifter across all weight categories in her age group. Strong and powerful for her age, Del Balso handles high pressure situations extremely well for a young athlete. In addition to her own weightlifting, she helps her dad work with the younger athletes who train at his gym, Conqueror Weightlifting. She is patient and helpful with the younger athletes who are just learning and has a gift for lifting others up.

Edge: How did you get started weightlifting?

Del Balso: I started in my garage when I was eight years old. I was frequently around other lifters who my dad coached, and I asked my dad if I could get started. Being around other weightlifters made me feel more confident in wanting to try the sport at a young age.

Edge: Are there challenges you’ve encountered?

Del Balso: The biggest challenge in weightlifting is attempting new personal record lifts and dealing with the disappointment of not making it. I have learned to let it go and just move on. It can also be challenging to train with my school and other sports practice schedules.

Edge: Is there a piece of advice that made a big difference for you?

Del Balso: My dad always encourages me to do my best even though it may be difficult or hard. Another piece of advice that has helped me is to be consistent in every part of my training. It has helped me be successful in competitions when it matters most.

Edge: Does Chassity have any talents that make you especially proud?

CJ Del Balso: While I am certainly proud of all that Chassity has achieved in weightlifting, I am even more proud of the kindness she shows to others on a consistent basis. Chassity is a very kind and caring individual who works well with people of all ages. She is always eager to lend a helping hand and has a gift for lifting others up.

Edge: What’s it like lifting at your dad’s gym?

Del Balso: I love lifting at my dad’s gym because I love to see other kids and adults learn the skills necessary to grow as a lifter. I also like training with my dad because he is a really great influence on me and others working out at his gym.

Edge: What do most people misunderstand about weightlifting?

Del Balso: People think weightlifting is the same as powerlifting. Most people think we do the bench press in weightlifting competitions, but this is incorrect. The two lifts we do in competition are the snatch and clean & jerk. Powerlifting is a different sport than weightlifting.

Edge: What’s your favorite thing to do outside of weightlifting?

Del Balso: My two favorite things to do outside of weightlifting are volleyball and track and field. I like volleyball because I wanted to do something as a team. I love doing the shot put in track and field because it displays my strength and power. I also enjoy watching TV in my spare time because it’s relaxing.

Edge: Do you have future goals with weightlifting?

Del Balso: I would love to make it to the Olympics and win a gold medal. I would also like to be a weightlifting coach.

Edge: Where do you see yourself in the future?

Del Balso: I would like to attend college, but I don’t know where yet. I also want to make my own side business and be a fashion designer. No matter what I become, I will keep on doing weightlifting until I’m a grandma!

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