Intensive care nurse lifts world powerlifting crown

Siobhan Taylor on the top step of the podium, having been given her gold medalImage source, International Powerlifting Federation
Image caption,

Taylor said she felt "elated" to become world champion, and said the sport is for "all shapes and sizes"

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A nurse who took up powerlifting at the age of 39 has been crowned world champion with a record-breaking bench press.

Siobhan Taylor from Haverhill, Suffolk, was selected to represent Great Britain in April after only taking up the sport six years ago to overcome a back injury.

She clinched the title for her 185kg bench press in the 84kg Masters 1 category in Austin, Texas, setting a new British and Commonwealth record at the same time.

"I've set out everything I wanted to achieve, and then some," she said.

Taylor, an intensive care nurse at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge, said the sport was recommended to her after she feared a back injury would threaten her job.

She holds the Commonwealth and All England Champion titles for powerlifting, and she is a British Champion and European Champion on the equipped bench.

Image source, International Powerlifting Federation
Image caption,

Taylor was unaware her bench press was 22kg heavier than the previous British record in her weight category

"It wasn't until I came off and went backstage, I found out how much had actually been on the bars, it was 185kg - which is 22kg over the current British record and current Commonwealth record," she said.

"Being able to have the title of world champion is the most surreal but also the best thing.

"It's what I'm most proud of, as it crystallises all the hard work and support I have had to get here."

Image source, Siobhan Taylor
Image caption,

Siobhan Taylor's 185 kilogram lift saw her crowned world champion and set a new British and Commonwealth record

Taylor thanked her colleagues, who she said had gathered to watch a live stream of the competition at the hospital.

On social media she said, external: "Today was a DAY. I just don't have the vocabulary right now to describe how I feel or what's going on in my brain."

Taylor has set her sights on defending her title at the European Championships in eight weeks, although admitted to only celebrating with a cup of tea so far.

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