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Nine-Year-Old Arm Wrestling Phenom Crushes Competition and CBC Host

Move over, Hulk Hogan! Meet Tristan, the pint-sized powerhouse who can deadlift 150 pounds and dominate the arm wrestling arena

You thought you were strong. You may want to rethink that once you meet Tristan from Drayton Valley.

Despite a massive age gap, nine-year-old Tristan beat a CBC radio host in an arm wrestling match.

Despite being much younger and smaller, it was no contest; Tristan won in two seconds.

Tristan’s strength is unmatched in his hometown. He has been practicing Greco-Roman wrestling since he was three and can deadlift 150 pounds. 

About a year ago, Tristan discovered arm wrestling after defeating a silver medalist in a national youth competition. He fell in love with the sport’s competitiveness and strategy.

Tristan’s favourite technique is the “high hook” because it limits the opponent’s power. This technique requires speed and wrist strength to bend the opponent’s wrist backwards. 

Other techniques in arm wrestling include the top roll, press, and the Canadian or European hook.

tristan wearing his medals from the provincial arm wrestling event
Tristan showing off his medals at the Provincial Championship | The Drayton Valley and District Free Press

Tristan’s talent was recognized at a competition in Lethbridge last month, where he won a gold medal in his age group at the Alberta Arm Wrestling Championships.

His victory qualified him to participate in the national championships, scheduled to take place in Nova Scotia in July. To make this dream a reality, Tristan’s family is fundraising to cover the travel expenses.

Tristan expressed his excitement about the upcoming competition but also admitted to being a bit scared about the plane ride.

When Tristan isn’t annihilating his competition, he is training at his local gym in Drayton Valley or exercising outdoors by flipping truck tires.

His father, Nick Arseneault, praised Tristan’s determination and mentioned that he excels in everything he tries.

Arm wrestling is gaining popularity in Canada, according to Tristan’s coach, Frazier Benoit. He explained that there were no youth or amateur divisions when he started arm wrestling.

“When I first started arm wrestling, there was no such things like a youth or amateur division. I was thrown to the wolves,” Benoit told CBC News.

However, the sport has evolved over the years. It has become more serious, with trainers and specialized equipment being used by competitors.

Benoit, based in Blackfalds, offers one-on-one coaching and even youth clinics to meet the growing interest in arm wrestling.

Tristan sometimes joins Benoit in these youth sessions to demonstrate techniques and assist in teaching. Benoit himself represented Canada in the World Armwrestling Championship in 2003 and 2008.

He mentioned that if Tristan performs well in the national championship, he may have a chance to qualify for the world championship in Kazakhstan at the end of August.

Nova Scotia is far from home, but we will cheer Tristan on as he takes on the national championship next month!

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