Koanda Solfrid Interview (April 2023, after European Championship)

Last week Solfrid Koanda became the second time in her sport career European champion (Yerevan, Armenian) in the 87 weight class. She won three GOLD medals and set personal best in Snatch – 117 kg, Clean & Jerk – 155 kg, and total – 272 kg.

Another cool fact is that last year in Bogota (Colombia) Koanda became Norway’s first ever female world champion.

Solfrid Koanda began her gym journey with strength training at the age of 15. When she turned 18, she trained in fitness and later, at 21, she discovered her passion for weightlifting.

Now, three years after, with two European Championships gold medals and a World Championship gold medal under her belt, her main goal is gold at the Olympic Games.

Right after the medal ceremony at the Europeans we had a chance to ask her impressions about this performance.

It is amazing how big is your progress in technique and kilos on the bar, how did it happen?

K.S. I did a huge amount of work in this direction, so I feel now much more stable.

In snatch you failed the first attempt at 110 kg, and after a successful second you added 7 kg for PR and made it. What was all that show?

K.S. Well, I think I wasn’t in the right mindset because as soon as I caught the bar in an overhead position and felt it was going forward, I thought – know what I did wrong. That’s why when I came back to the warm up area I was a little bit angry. I realized it was like I a stupid mistake, but also this stress helped me to focus for my third attempt. And this is my + 1 kilo PB.

How big is your total progress counting from the last Worlds in Bogota?

K.S. I made there 113 + 147, so it is + 12 kg. 

After your last attempt in C&J 155 kg you laid on the platform and it seems you felt dizzy?

K.S. Two minutes in between the second and third PR attempt definitely wasn’t enough. Also I was very excited to try this weight and I felt strong. But when I completed the lift 155 kg I was sort of very fatigued, baffled and so surprised… emotions shutted me down. 

So no injuries, I was very happy and I felt I could do more.

But we know that you competed 10 days before in Norway?

K.S. Yes 10 days before Europeans I did a total – 268 kg. So my mindset here was to lift the same numbers or even more and I did it. It was a promotional tournament for the upcoming Worlds in Norway 2024. 

Technically it was competition for fun, but in reality for me it was a mental push to confirm my actual shape and after this I said myself: “Now, let’s go to Armenia”

Tanya Shaiko

Author: Tanya Shaiko
News Editor, Olympic Lifting Enthusiast

Oly Lifting Experience: 6 years
Best ResultsSnatch – 61 kg,
C&J – 78 kg

I’m Tanya, and I love lifting weights. 6 years ago, I picked up Olympic weightlifting and fitness. Weightlifting is a unique sport because it’s just you against the bar. There are no teammates to help you out; it’s all on you.
I’m also passionate about helping other women achieve their fitness goals. That’s why I started my blog and write some products reviews. I want to show other women that they can do anything they set their mind to!

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