Welcome to San Antonio, the home of TSS Barbell and Empire Elite Weightlifting.
TSS Barbell was founded with three members and a single coach in 2016. The club began hosting team practices in a small shared space and quickly became one of the fastest growing teams in Texas: Over the last four years, TSS Barbell has gained just over one hundred active members. In 2020, our USA Weightlifting club TSS Barbell transitioned to a Youth and Junior club.
Our physical location is the new home of TSS Barbell and Empire Elite Weightlifting, our second USA Weightlifting team of Senior and Masters weightlifting athletes.
Empire Elite’s mission is to develop strong-minded individuals into both technically-proficient lifters and into leaders within the weightlifting community. We accomplish this growth and development mission through investing countless hours and resources into our team members, including individualized program design, small group training sessions, remote consultations, and affordable competition coaching.
All TSS Barbell and Empire Elite members learn how to compete in the sport of Olympic weightlifting through the active participation in our established programs lead by our experienced USA Weightlifting coaches. Members are not required to compete nationally nor locally at this time (June 18th, 2021).
All of our programs are housed within our 2,900 square foot facility in the heart of San Antonio, Texas. We have dedicated space for private coaching sessions, open gym, small group training sessions, and air conditioned office space.Our training hall is fully equipped with full sets of IWF discs; jerk blocks and pulling blocks; squat racks, squat stands, and a power rack; a deadlift platform; a Woodway treadmill and other functional fitness equipment; and finally, bars and collars collectively from Eleiko, DHS, Uesaka, ZKC, Werk San and Rogue.
In 2019 and in 2020, we earned the prestigious designation of “Community Development Site” from USA Weightlifting.
Founder + Owner + Meet Director + USAW National Coach
USA Weightlifting National Coach Jilly Jaworske has taught athletes of all ages and experience levels over the course of the last decade. She began coaching whilst attending the University of Miami for her undergraduate coursework and studied both Exercise Physiology and Economics. After beginning her graduate work in Advanced Human Performance through UM’s school of Education, she quickly realized her passion was in teaching others and specifically, dedicating her time to researching biomechanics, physics, and athletic development.
Jilly found her niche in educating and coaching athletes in a one-on-one setting: Working privately with athletes to develop their innate genetic potential and talents eventually evolved into coaching dozens of athletes through the years to develop their own unique, efficient weightlifting techniques. Jilly loves working with beginner athletes (whom have never even lifted a bar); athletes competing at the National Senior level; and every other kind of athlete in between who has the desire to grow as both an individual and an athlete through the medium of weightlifting.
Jilly Jaworske competed at or qualified for every national Senior meet, including the Senior National Championships, from 2015 through 2019, when she retired from competing nationally to focus on coaching. She has been ranked nationally (top ten) in multiple weight classes at the height of her athletic career. Jilly was awarded her first national medal at the Under 25 National Championships (2016) and holds retired Texas State records in the 69kg weight class (2018). In 2018, Jilly was invited to compete in the Pan American Trials session at the Arnold and declined in order to coach one of her nationally-competitive athletes who was competing across the convention center: For over a decade, her career has been dedicated to developing other through education and experience from quads of competing at the elite level in two different Olympic sports.
Jilly Jaworske has been coached by, mentored by and even had the privilege of working under some of the best coaches in the United States: As an athlete, Jilly was coached by and attended courses and certifications taught directly by Colin Burns (Ronin Weightlifting); Ursula Garza (Texas Barbell); Max Aita (Juggernaut Training Systems); Spencer Arnold (Power and Grace Performance); and Sean Waxman (Waxman’s Gym).
Prior to weightlifting, Jilly was heavily involved in the USA Equestrian community. She began competing regionally in the lower levels of US Show Jumping (hunters, jumpers, hunt seat equitation) at nine years old and progressed to competing nationally and briefly internationally as a junior athlete. Over the course of her career as an equestrian athlete, she worked under world-renowned trainers Stacia Madden (Beacon Hill Show Stables); Polly Howard (Fox Meadow Farm); and Pan-Am medalist Debbie Stephens (Imperial Inc.).
Jilly founded TSS Barbell in 2016 with three members to her club’s name. Alongside two major shoulder surgeries in 2018, Jilly and the team opened their current brick and mortar location on April 2nd, 2018.
In 2020, Jilly shifted her focus to coaching both Senior and Masters level lifters as the Head Coach for Empire Elite in addition to the Youth and Junior members of TSS Barbell. In 2021, she has dedicated her free-time to writing educational content for developing coaches and taking ballroom dancing lessons with her other half, Nick. She is also mother to three wonderful fur children: Kilo, Carlos Doug, and Shelby.