Powerlifter Amanda Kohatsu doesn’t shy away from lifting heavy. Kohatsu recently showed off an impressive 470 lb deadlift triple, which was a rep personal record.
Even though Kohatsu displays incredible strength constantly on her Instagram page, it’s been no walk in the park for her.
In February 2018, she suffered a knee injury that has since impacted her training and mindset greatly. After hitting her rep PR the other day, BarBend got the chance to catch up with Kohatsu and hear about her current training, lessons learned from her knee injury, and everything in between.
First things first though, check out this impressive 470 lb deadlift triple from her.
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470×3 for a rep PR 🚨 . . . This is probably my worst looking set in a long time. I couldn’t get in position, ripped my fucking hand…blah blah. Not everyday is gonna be lit. Just keep repeating to myself that this is just work…and more to come🙃 . . . @rpstrength “Fatloss 1” program on the app is getting a little aggressive but thank goodness for intra workout carbs 🙏🏽 . . Use code HAPA for discounts on all products❤️ . . . . #hapastrong #strengthcomesinallsizes #doughnutsanddeadlifts #rpstrengthathlete #fitness #girlswhodowhateverthefucktheywant #strongandsalty #strongwomen #mbslingshot
In Kohatsu’s deadlift above it doesn’t look like she’s in any kind of knee pain, but she admits that her injury isn’t fully healed. That being said, this long road to recovery has taught her many lessons.
“The first lessons [I learned] were that I should have listened to my body more last year,” Kohatsu told BarBend. “Instead of backing off when pain was present I worked through it (not like “blood flow” work through it, like squat 425 lbs in wraps). I finally surrendered around summer of last year and took five-to-six months off of squatting all together. I wished I had done that initially!”
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“Been through more than a lil' bit… But I ain't callin' no names out No, no free promotion…No sneak diss, no sneak shit….that’s just how I was raised” – @teyanataylor . . . Been focusing on making finance, physical, and emotional gains…How bout you? . . . @fraziergraphix 📸 . . . #girlswhopowerlift #hapastrong #strongwomen #powerlifting #womenwhodowhateverthefucktheywant
From the outside looking in, Kohatsu’s strength doesn’t look like it’s been hindered at all by her injury and recovery, but she admits that “everything has changed.”
“My frequency and volume have decreased for my lower body by over 50 percent. I squat singles and sometimes doubles once a week if and when I feel good.”
She also incorporates multiple squat variations in her training, along with physical therapy work.
“My accessories look more like PT work than training, and now my posterior strength is much more balanced than before as I was super ‘quad dominant’. I train the muscles that don’t effect the knee hard (specifically back/hamstrings/glutes).”
For Kohatsu, training really is her entire world. She recalls an occasion last winter when she couldn’t walk down her stairs, and all she could think about was getting back into the gym with her friends. What at the moment perhaps felt like an eternity, she couldn’t be more grateful for being back at it now.
“Here I am, doing it!” She said. “Not like I used to, but I’m here and if I’m gonna be here, why not throw some weight on the bar and push myself?”
Feature image from @haparican Instagram page.