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Documentary Strong Women Premieres on ABC iView Sun 1 Aug

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This three-part series follows four resilient women as they support and empower each other while competing to become Australia’s strongest woman in the Strongman sport.

From across the country these athletes share what led them to the sport and how their tenacity is helping them rebuild themselves inside and out.

Strong Women centres around four female athletes – Kerryn, Mari, Alira and Leigh – competing in the Strongman sport.

These women don’t do steroids and aren’t focussed on what their bodies look like – they care about what their bodies can do.

Challenged with a combination of weights, speed, balance, and stamina, they run with heavy equipment across the gym floor, they lift heavy cement balls and toss tyres.

The women featured in this series are: Mariko Whyte, who developed bulimia as a competitive bodybuilder and has finally found self-empowerment in the Strongman community.

Alira Verity used strength training to build her self-confidence after dealing with domestic abuse from a former partner.

Leigh Holland-Keen was inspired by her mother to take up Strongman and became an icon after lifting the legendary Scottish Dinnie Stones.

Kerryn Siems is a recovering drug and alcohol addict, diagnosed with body dysmorphia.

This series combines an intimate portrait of these women, while also taking a broader look at the Strongman subculture. We accompany the women as they step through the State and then National qualifiers only to have their training de-railed by COVID-19.

While the amateur sport of Strongman is a niche within Australia, the community is rapidly growing, particularly for women. The number of women competing in amateur Strongman has increased by more than 500% since 2015 (Arnold Strongman Australia stats), and now more women are competing than men (ASA league stats).

This series delves deep into the four athletes’ motivations and the legacy they want to leave for the women of the next generation. It urges them and the audience to reflect on their role as women in our society. Strong Women aims to encourage women to celebrate their body for what it can achieve.

Production credits: Directed and Produced by Corinne Innes and Alexandra Gaulupeau. Co-produced by Ann Megalla. ABC Manager, Screen: Jo Chichester. ABC Executive Producer, Rachel Robinson.

Documentary Strong Women Premieres on ABC iView Sunday 1 August.