Kiwi weightlifting champ helps Black Ferns prepare for World Cup, Olympics after recovering from knee injury

Megan Signal could have been rubbing shoulders with Black Ferns at the Tokyo Olympics over the past few days.

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If things pan out right, Megan Signal could meet up with some of the players in Tokyo again next year. Source: 1 NEWS

Instead, thanks to Covid-19, the Kiwi weightlifting champion is handing out training tips to some of them at a local gym in Papatoetoe.

Signal told 1 NEWS she hasn’t had to pipe up much, though.

“They picked it up so easily and even the more technical movements like the overhead squats,” she said.

The get-together, with up to 40 players involved, is part of a masterplan to give the Black Ferns a strength edge at next year's Rugby World Cup, which is being hosted here.

Leading weightlifting coach Simon Kent, who enjoyed success with Auckland Rugby, told 1 NEWS there are real crossover benefits to the scheme.

“We’re helping them become more aware of their physiques, more aware of their bodies, how they use their bodies and switch different muscles on,” he said.

But for Signal, engaging with Black Ferns was a new experience as well after she missed out on interacting with some of the sevens stars back at the 2018 Commonwealth Games due to her late withdrawal because of a knee injury.

But today she was side-by-side with 2018 gold medallist and final hero Kelly Brazier.

“I’m gutted for her to obviously miss out [back then],” Brazier said.

“But it's cool now to come into her space.”

Having missed the chance to cheer them on from the Gold Coast stands, the under-76kg class lifter is trying to support them even more now.

“I think it definitely helps keeping things varied and exciting,” she said about their new strength training.

Several of the players told 1 NEWS they enjoyed the session so much they intend to return.

Just don’t expect to see Signal mirror their passion with a trip to the rugby pitch.

“I'm not particularly good at running, so I can't see that.”