PUHI — Kenna Yamamoto is just 11 years old. He has been weightlifting for about a year and is currently ranked No. 57 in the Under 13 age group in his weight classification, said JP Bolwahn, coach for Kauai Weightlifting.
“During the last competition on Oahu, Kenna competed in the 50 kilogram class,” Bolwahn said. “He finished second.”
Yamamoto is one of the Kauai Weightlifting athletes who will be competing Saturday when Kilauea Crossfit hosts the Weightlifting Open contest at its facility.
Registration opens at 8 a.m. with lifting to start at 10 a.m.
Bolwahn, who brought his weightlifting prowess and knowledge from San Diego, said the Kauai Weightlifting athletes will be going up against athletes from host Kilauea Crossfit, Jungle Barbell, and the Altius Barbell Club.
“I’d like to see more weightlifting contests on Kauai,” Bolwahn said. “The ideal would be to have at least two matches during the year. The last competition we went to, we took the athletes to Oahu for the Hawaii championships.”
Also at that competition on Oahu was Brandi Lopez, who has also been lifting for about a year and finished fourth.
“I was six-for-six,” Lopez said. “I was perfect and personal recorded.”
Bolwahn said Kauai Weightlifting athletes scheduled to participate in the Saturday event include Yamamoto, Lopez at the 58 kilogram class, Kaiole Brun at the 94 kilogram class, and Micah Young at the 85 kilogram class.
Olympic weightlifting is for any athlete, Bolwahn said.
“It is different from power lifting,” the Kauai Weightlifting coach said. “Our routines are the snatch and the clean and jerk, and there is always the possibility that anyone, even from Kauai, can make it to the Olympic games.”