PREECEVILLE — The 11th annual International King Kong Grip Strength Challenge returned to Saskatchewan once again, with Preeceville family members Michael Bierman and his two children training throughout the year to prepare for the competition.
The worldwide event was sponsored by Classic Strongman Championship League and held in Lumsden on Oct. 28. It was one of three held in Canada with the other two venues in B.C. and Ottawa.
"The Biggest Grip Sport Contest on the Planet" will feature competitions in 25+ cities in 10+ countries, all held the same day (same implements) on Oct. 28, stated the King Kong Grip Strength Challenge website.
Results from the hundreds and hundreds of lifters worldwide were compiled by KKG founder Eric Roussin of Canada Gripsport, and full world leaderboards and standings were announced the next day.
This was the second year that Michael Bierman participated. He participated in the 120kg men’s division and did a personal best of lifting as he placed 128th. His son Hendrik participated this year in the boys 8-10 age category as well as his daughter Miné in the girls 8-10 category, and both won first place in their category.
“I got involved in the sport for fun and it looked like and interesting sport that would challenge and push me to do my personal best,” said Michael Bierman. “Last year I wound up fracturing my left wrist and had some ankle problems going into the competition. This year was better and my children decided they wanted to train with me and enter this year. We have our own tailor-made gym in our home, which makes workouts and training is a little easier. I even built my own squat rack that holds up to 1,000 pounds. Everyone at the competition are really great with being very supportive and offering techniques to help define my skills,” he said.
Participants were scored on events that featured four categories, all one handed, hand of lifters choice, lifted to heaviest weight possible, a 2.25-inch (rolling) Crusher (FBBC) – 6-inch Lift, a Pinch Block (IronMind) – 6-inch Lift, aFinnish Ball (key pinch) (Otevoima) – 13-inch Lift and a 2.5-inch Jug vertical lift (FBBC) – 6” Lift.
Lifter divisions in Saskatchewan were: Men 105kg-/105 kg-plus, Masters 50-plus and Women: 84kg-/84 kg-plus.
Divisions not officially offered in the Saskatchewan contest will still be tracked for GripSport Internationals records purposes, and for worldwide leaderboards at their website.
Saskatchewan awards presented are trophies for overall Man and Woman, Medals for weight class champions and overall second and third for both sexes.