Dear Members:

This is the first of a monthly update from the National Office, designed to highlight what has happened in the month just gone, and what you can expect to see in the month ahead.

Thank you for all your support in 2016. It was a year of great change for USA Weightlifting, and 2017 looks to be another key year for us as we seek to return to being among the most competitive nations in our sport. The highlights in 2016 were many, but I cannot go any further without again mentioned our Olympic medalist, Sarah Robles, our World Record-setter and double World Champion CJ Cummings and our World University Champions, Kerri Keegan & Mattie Rogers. There was so much good on and off the platform, but these are some clear highlights.

2017 promises to be a huge year for the USA Weightlifting community. This year we will host the 2017 IWF World Championships in Anaheim, CA in November right before the American Open Finals. Visit the Official 2017 IWF World Championships website here and purchase tickets for what will be an incredible event.

This summer, we will host the 2017 Pan American Championships in Miami. If that's not enough, we are launching the American Open Series. By the way, registration is now open for all our Nike National Events Presented by Rogue Fitness except for the American Open Finals. Head over to our qualifying totals portal to see if you’ve hit the number and then go ahead and register.

USA Weightlifting receives no funding from the US Government, contrary to most of our opposition, so the primary people who keep our program alive are you, our members. In 2016, you gave in record amount of money to USA Weightlifting which helps us deliver one of the largest direct athlete support (cash to athlete) programs in the US Olympic Movement. We need your help again in 2017, we appreciate your support and you can give a tax deductible donation to support our programs. Give to USAW here.

In our high performance area, we have two critical challenges this year. At the Pan American Championships our team must score points towards qualification for the 2019 Pan American Games, while at the IWF World Youth Championships this April, our Youth team must secure points for qualification towards the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

We will also be working on individual high performance plans to make sure we are supporting our athletes in the best way we can, opening up an active recruitment program, while in January you’ll be begin to see documentation on team leader assignments, coaching assignments. We will also meet with the U.S. Olympic Committee this month to talk through performance objectives as we build towards 2020.

Our coaching education program remains a cornerstone of our National Governing Body, and that will get stronger this month as Tamas Feher begins work here in Colorado Springs. Tamas has coached in a number of different nations and has become known in particular for his educational work. We are delighted to have him impacting our Coaching Education area. Look for some new products be rolled out as we get towards mid and late 2017. We’ll also welcome our inaugural coaching symposium this summer, with some great speakers already lined up.

Events will keep on coming too, led by the 2016 Olympic & Paralympic Games Competition Manager Pedro Meloni who also lands in Colorado Springs this month. Pedro has a worldwide reputation in our sport and I am sure you will enjoy his work at our 8 national events, which once again will all be streamed live here on free of charge.

Meanwhile, our sponsorship activity has also increased. We’ve recently welcomed Rogue Fitness, BarBend and Health IQ to our growing list of partners. This year we aim to grow this group more to support our goals. Please take the time to check out our sponsors and partners and use their products as a preference.

This year we will bring some additional support to our clubs to help you continue to bring new members through your door, and continue to drive demand for this great sport. We’ll be reaching out shortly to do a membership survey to get your feedback, bring more content to your social media screen and develop ways to make us more efficient. By the way, the rankings are now back up so check these out via our WebPoint account to see where you rank in your weight category.

Below you’ll find some numbers and updates from December which you will also see on a monthly basis.

It’s going to be a great 2017, and we can’t do it without you – the membership. Feel free to reach out to the National Office, we want to hear your feedback, your ideas and what you want to see from us. You’ll hear from me again next month about what we achieved in January and what February might hold.

Phil Andrews

December 2016:
Number of Members: 26,706 (+4,200 on 2015 – 18.66% year-on-year membership increase)
Unique visitors to in December: 100,418
Unique visitors to in 2016: 1,083,419
People reached on Facebook: 2,402,605
Funds raised in December: $1,039.01
Funds raised in 2016: $67,035.47
Coaching Course Participants in 2016: 4,839
LWC Referees: 2,481