Digby powerlifter beats own national record at competition

Published on March 20, 2017

Paul Gidney, right, broke his own national record at the competition. He'll take on international competition at the world powerlifting championships in Sweden this October.

DIGBY, NS - A powerlifting powerhouse in Digby has just smashed his own national record, and is set to take on the international competition.

Paul Gidney has been powerlifting for 24 years, and is at the top of his game. He’s just won gold in the Master 2 105 kilogram class at the 2017 Canadian National Powerlifting Championships, held in Saguenay, Que., from Mar. 12-18s. His new deadlift record stands at 295.5 kilograms, which is also a Master 1 record.

Despite his success, Gidney had no intentions of purposely attempting to beat his existing national record.

“My goal at nationals was to finish in first so I’d qualify for the worlds,” he says, “but I was ahead after my second deadlift, and my coach said to go for it.”

When I stand on the world stage, I've got the Canadian flag wrapped around me, but Digby's flag in my hands. Paul Gidney

Gidney’s coach, Cliff Samms, is also his colleague. The pair takes turns coaching each other, and first met in 2002. Samms will coach Gidney once again at the worlds later this year from Oct. 1 to 8 in Sweden.

Gidney is looking forward to being the strongest he’s ever been heading into the worlds, and begins his training for them this week.

Gidney will hold a fundraiser Apr. 23 at the Digby Wesleyan Church. The event will feature a scallop dinner, and will raise funds for his competition.

“This is unfortunately not a cheap sport,” he says.

He says he always feels support from his community, and represents them proudly when he competes. Gidney also feels his faith gets him through his competitions, and feels thankful and blessed.

“When I stand on the world stage, I've got the Canadian flag wrapped around me, but Digby's flag in my hands,” he says.