Woodland Weightlifting: David Kiernan

For David Kiernan, a broken back a year before never slowed him down before becoming last year’s NVL Most Valuable Lifter and Top Performer for Woodland’s weightlifting team.

Kiernan started lifting with his dad in 8th grade. His dad used to lift back when he went to high school and college, but unfortunately had to quit when he had kids, though he wanted to continue for those years. When he had the opportunity, he brought David to the YMCA in Ansonia where David’s legacy begins.

“When I started lifting, I rarely used any weight because I had to learn the form for each exercise,” Kienan said his dad would, instead. “Only make him do the one pound stretch bar while squatting until his form was perfect.”

When winter sports started up his freshman year, he started competitive lifting for Woodland. His maximum lift would be no more than 95 pounds. Two weeks into the season, the team maxed out (how much one can lift one time) to see what each athlete could possibly fully extend up before not being able to get the weight up. Kiernan would get an impressive 225 pounds on squat.

Through hard work and dedication, Kiernan definitely improved his athletic ability. When the season started to die down and the NVL Weightlifting Competition came into perspective, Kiernan was able to compete as a freshman for squat in the 160 pound and under weight class. He put 275 pounds on his back and was able to squat the heavy load while thirty Woodland players waited their turn to high-five him after his accomplishment.

Kiernan realized, with the sport, there are many risks that he’d have to suffer from in the future. He had the occasional back pulls and joint tweeks. Although during the summer of his sophomore year, he fractured his L-5 vertebrae in his spine while deadlifting a great amount of weight.

He’d spend up to two and a half months recovering with a Boston overlap brace, but he still had the ability to workout other body parts. After he was cleared, his doctor told him to not lift heavy because it could possibly injure his back again. But he ended competing two months later. The great lesson he learned from the injury was “how [his] body responds and the limits [he] had.”

For every lifter, they all have their favorite lift. For Kiernan, he explains, “I definitely love the squat because I can put the most weight on it… I also love to deadlift and lately been really enjoying the progression of my bench since recently passing the 225 pound plateau.”

That wasn’t his only success. Recently, he has also lifted 405 in squat, 255 in power clean, and 235 in bench. David believes that his results from Woodland’s Weightlifting team is achievable by anyone who works hard throughout the season.

“I highly recommend lifting with Woodland if you’re looking for a good way to increase your game in any other sports you play. It also plays a good role if you’re looking to lose weight,” Said Kiernan. “There’s nothing wrong with strengthening your body because all those movements can help you in your future life for everyday activities.”