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Detective Constable Stuart Edwards has been named UK's Strongest police officer

A West Mercia officer form Shropshire has won a national 'Strongman' competition held recently in Lincolnshire

Detective Stuart Edwards has been a West Mercia police officer for over 11 years and is working towards a detective's accreditation in the Proactive CID team based in Shrewsbury.

Stuart first got into 'Strongman' in 2011 whilst working on patrol shifts in Oswestry having been invited to compete in a local charity strongman event at Oswestry Rugby Club. "I had competed in a few local competitions and done quite well but was injured on duty damaging both my shoulders while restraining a young man following a mental health breakdown. These injuries required two surgeries and nearly two years of recovery. In 2017 I was able to return to competition level and won Shropshire's Strongest Man."

Following on from the success of 'Shropshire's Strongest Man' he returned to his first choice sport of rugby. He has represented the force during numerous 'Police Sport UK' Inter-Constabulary Rugby Cup campaigns. "Rugby has been a passion of mine since I was nine years old and I still play for Bridgnorth Rugby Club and represent the club up to 1st Team level and I also play at county level for Shropshire."

At the beginning of the year Stuart was approached and encouraged by two previous supervisors Insp Tracy Ryan and Insp Charlie Parker who had heard about the Police Sport UK's hosting of the 'UK's Strongest Police Officer 2019'. The annual competition was to be held on 23 June 2019 in Lincoln. The competition was open to anyone who is a police employee from officer to police staff in order to be as inclusive as possible.

In March he began training for the competition, giving himself 16 weeks to prepare. Stuart says of the training: "Although this seems like a lot of time Strongman is a brutal sport with the risk of injury extremely high due to the unnatural loads and extreme pressure the body is put through. This meant 50 training sessions lasting up to 3hrs per session and over the 16 weeks it meant I had to consume nearly 500,000 calories!"

When the day of the competition finally arrived, police officers from all over the UK as far away as Northern Ireland and Scotland made their way to Lincolnshire to compete in their respective categories for the title of the 'UK's Strongest Police Officer'. Stuart competed in the Open weight category with the events as below:

  • Overhead Press Medley - each implement to be lifted from the floor to overhead in sequence. A 90kg fixed 2 inch thick Axel Bar, a 100kg Metal Log, a 110kg Standard Olympic bar, and a 58kg Circus Dumbbell to be lifted with one arm only. The event had a 60 second time limit. Should all implements be completed athletes should use the remaining time to complete as many repetitions of the Circus Dumbbell as possible.

  • Truck pull - 10 tonne lorry to be pulled a distance of 15m with a rope and harness in a 90 second time limit.

  • Deadlift for reps - a 250kg deadlift on a fixed 2 inch thick axle bar head to head in a 60 second time limit.

  • Yoke Carry into Farmers Walk- a 300kg Yoke to be carried 15m then a 125kg in each hand Farmers Walk to be carried back 15m in a 60 second time limit.

  • Atlas stones - 5 Stones in ascending weight 100kg, 110kg, 110kg, 130kg, 150kg to be picked up and placed over a 4ft Yoke in a 60 seconds time limit.

"Following the first 4 events, three of us were tied for first place and as usual in Strongman, it all came down to the atlas stones, which means the fastest man to pick up and load the stones wins.

"Once the event was finished came the long wait for the winners to be announced. Last but not least, I was announced as the UK's Strongest Police Officer.

"On the day over £1000 was raised for two charities; MIND (a mental health charity which provides help support and advice to police officers) and the Police Dependants Trust"

 

Editors - Stuart is available for interview. Please contact Alex Gale, Corporate Communications to discuss and arrange on 07779 543174 or on alexis.gale@warwickshire.pnn.police.uk

Issued by Alex Gale, Communications Officer at 3pm 2019

Published 04/07/19