Valley Powerlifters crunch state titles

Strong people: Nik Stone, Dan Dakis, Tony Harrington and Blake Harris delighted with their results at the ACT Powerlifting State Titles.
Strong people: Nik Stone, Dan Dakis, Tony Harrington and Blake Harris delighted with their results at the ACT Powerlifting State Titles.

A number of Bega Valley powerlifters have topped their class during the ACT State Titles. 

Competing at the Global Powerlifting Committee meet recently, Dan Dakis, Nik Stone and Tony Harrington have all won their divisions, while Ian Childs finished runner-up in a hotly contested weight class and 17-year-old Blake Harris narrowly missed a podium finish.. 

Dakis, who is owner of the Iron Stronghold strength gym coaches the group. “The results were awesome and everyone ended up with a personal best,” he said. 

Dakis lifted a total of 790kg, a squat of 300, bench press of 190 and a 300kg deadlift – which was the biggest lifts of any competitor. Stone wasn’t far behind with a 260kg squat, 180kg bench press and a 260kg deadlift for a total of 700kg. 

“That landed me the gold medal in the 110kg class, so I’m pretty happy with that,” Stone said. 

“Especially because I’ve been dealing with a back injury all year and wasn’t sure I was even going to compete.”

He aggravated a disc just two weeks ago, but some excellent therapy helped out and the result marks a 20kg improvement on the same event last year.

“Honestly I was just happy to be back on the platform, let alone winning the division and hitting some personal bests,” he said. 

Dakis knows his pain and missed two years of competition with a back injury before getting back to form since 2014. 

“Through smart training, good technique and working with some of the best physios and coaches in Australia I'm able to compete and train pain free,” Dakis said. 

From his other team members, Harrington won the 67.5kg weight-class with total lifts of 302.5kg including a 95kg squat and 145kg deadlift. 

Childs, 63, showed the young guns age is no barrier with a 160kg squat, 200kg deadlift and 75kg bench to finish a close runner-up result in the 75kg category. 

Harris had some fantastic lifts in the 90kg class, but was met by some huge opposition to finish just outside the ranks. 

Dakis said it is about a 10-to-12-week prep time for he and his team, beginning with high repetitions of lighter weights. 

Closer to the competition, they will drop the number of reps and up the weight closer to their bests. 

“For the bigger guys you could be crunching 3000-4000 calories every day to maintain mass,” but Dakis said it is a juggling act as you still need to make your competition weight. 

The coach also has to carefully manage his diet as he controls diabetes. 

A week out the lifters “deload” to drop any fatigue and hit the competition fresh with one thing in mind – lifting as much as they can. 

Dakis said powerlifting is an all-inclusive sport and doesn’t discriminate against anyone.

If you would like to take up powerlifting, you can contact Dakis on 0428 753 024.