Queensland to Tokyo - Charisma Amoe-Tarrant

Queensland to Tokyo - Charisma Amoe-Tarrant

With the recent world events, the Tokyo Summer Olympic Games has been postponed exactly one year, and will now be celebrated 23 July 2021 – 8 August 2021.

Another interview in our series introducing Queensland's Olympic hopefuls... working towards making their dreams of representing our sport on the biggest stage of all, come true.

With her signature hype-call and a showstopping 260kg back squat, the energy Cougars Weightlifting Club athlete Charisma Amoe-Tarrant brings to a room is contagious and electric.

After winning a silver medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games for her birth country of Nauru, Charisma made the emotional decision to switch her sporting nationality to Australia, having lived here since 2012 and becoming a citizen in 2016.

Charisma has since donned the green and gold at a number of international competitions, and hopes to add the Olympic Games to her already impressive competition history.

I’ve been doing weightlifting for a while now, almost 10 years. The first time I touched a bar was in my birth country Nauru. I was 11 years old and not very keen on it, as at the time I was focusing more on shot put and discus.

I was tricked into doing the sport by my uncle, who was a weightlifting coach at the time. He'd been nagging me to join and I kept saying "no", but eventually we struck up a deal to train together for one week, and if after that I still didn’t like lifting, he would leave me alone!

He must have seen the potential in me, because after that first week of training with him I fell in love with the sport and completely forgot about all my other goals and just wanted to keep lifting.

How are you involved with developing the sport of weightlifting in Queensland?

I’m not officially involved with coaching, but I try to help out anyone who has questions, and by setting an example to the younger lifters in the gym.

Really, all I want is to make sure that I support everyone in any way that I can, and when they’re doing well, in training or competition... I can’t help but get fired up!

How have your training priorities changed in the lead up to Tokyo 2020?

Training has changed a lot since COVID-19 showed up. With the Olympics being pushed to next year, I’m using this time to focus more on myself mentally, since I have my moments now and then with the sport. I'm resetting my mind again. I am also very lucky and grateful for my good friend Mia for letting me train at her place during this time.

Who are your supporters and sponsors who have helped on your Olympic Games journey?

There are lot of people who are supporting me on this journey, the Australian Weightlifting Federation, my friends, family and grandparents, and coach Angela Wydall.

Angie has been nothing but patient with me since I started training with her. I’m not perfect, I've had so many up-and-down moments I didn’t think anyone would be able to keep up! But she is always there no matter what, and for that I am very grateful to her. No words can describe how thankful I am (and also sorry for always making her worry about me all the time!).

Tell us about your life outside the gym.

When I'm not training I love spending time with family and friends, otherwise really I’m just focusing on training and nothing else.

What would it mean to you to make the 2020 Australian Olympic Team?

To make it to the Olympics would sure be an early dream come true, but if I don't make it, I would still be grateful for the opportunity to be in the running at least. There’s always a next time, and you just gotta keep trying no matter what. Never regret, always be thankful.


Charisma is in hot contention for the Continental – Oceania spot in the F87+ category.

The Tokyo Summer Olympic Games will now be held 23 July 2021 – 8 August 2021.



Published on 12 May 20 - 15:58