Feats of Strength Debuts at JRO Games
On Saturday, July 27, the first-ever Feats of Strength Allsports National Combine debuted at the 2013 AAU Junior Olympic Games in Detroit. Competition was held in five different events to determine the strongest and fastest raw athletes at the 15,000-strong annual games.
Competitors at this first combine came from various sports backgrounds; they included track and field athletes, powerlifters, martial artists and weightlifters. Competition was fierce, yet fun. Pull-ups, Bench Press and Power Clean were timed events. With the 90-second clock running and the audience shouting, athletes pushed themselves against time and weighted resistance. The athletes competed for national titles and national records. A number of records were set in AAU Strength Sports “Feats of Strength” categories. Competition was close -- the leaders in several age groups were tied after four events. Those categories came down to a final 40-yard sprint tie-breaker to determine the National Champion.
“This was the first year for this combine event,” said meet director Hal Pittman, “and we were pleasantly surprised by the turnout. We also left the entry open until the morning of the event, and we had some late entries when athletes and their parents saw the set up.”
The first two events were Pull-ups and repetition Bench Press. For the Bench Press, athletes were required to lift a percentage of the AAU powerlifting world record in their age and weight category for as many strict repetitions as possible. Likewise, the strict Pull-up competition required the athletes to produce as many reps as possible in the 90-second period with no swinging or kipping.
The second rotation included the Standing Long Jump and repetition Power Clean. The Power Clean was conducted for 90 seconds and while some competitors struggled with this event, others completed more than 20 repetitions. In the Standing Long Jump, athletes were given three attempts to achieve the longest jump.
Upon completion of the first four events, all athletes proceeded to the starting line for the final event – the 40-yard sprint. Several age group winners were not determined until the 40-yard sprint was complete.
“The combine pulled athletes from several different sports at the AAU Junior Olympic Games,” said Steve Wood, AAU Strength Sports Chairman, “and we were fortunate to have close competition in multiple divisions. We’re certainly interested in running this event in the future… It is a real hybrid sport for the strongest and fastest athletes in AAU.”
Champions for the 2013 Feats of Strength Allsports National Combine were:
8-9 year olds Max Crofton
10-11 year olds Ben Delouche
12-13 year olds Del’Mario Hairston
14-15 year olds Evan Pittman
16-17 year olds Landon Perry
18-19 year olds Colten Rhodes
20-23 year olds Ryan Dukes
10-11 year olds Ashley Perryman
12-13 year olds Naudia Davenport
16-17 year olds Gabrielle Perryman