Congratulations to Superintendent John Rivers, who picked up two weighty titles at the Commonwealth Powerlifting Championships in Vancouver.
John, from PNHQ, won gold in the standalone bench press, with a personal best 130kg lift, and the three-lift competition involving back squat (180kg), bench press (125kg) and dead lift (190kg).
He competed in the masters under-93kg category in the tournament, which attracted athletes from New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Britain and the Pacific as well as host Canada.
John says powerlifting is a relatively small but growing community in New Zealand. Constable Darren Neves - a leading light in the sport in Auckland - also competes internationally.
John took up the sport in earnest while deployed to the Solomon Islands in 2007 as a way of both passing time and engaging with counterparts from many other countries.
“It’s a really positive, healthy activity and you meet lots of wonderful, interesting people,” he says. “It’s categorised by gender, weight and age so anyone can train and compete – and it’s attracting a growing number of women.
“It builds core strength so it’s relevant to most other sports and general fitness.”