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Local powerlifting athlete to compete in Special Olympics World Games in Germany

Regina’s Aaron Higgins will compete at the 2023 Special Olympics World Games in Berlin, Germany at the end of the month in powerlifting.

“I feel great!” exclaimed Higgins, who will compete in deadlift, squat, and benchpress at his first ever international competition.

“It’s pretty huge, it’s the biggest Special O competition in the world. So it is the pinnacle and peak of the sport pathway,” explained Ben Lozinsky, director of programs for Special Olympics Saskatchewan.

Higgins is among eight athletes from Saskatchewan who will represent Team Canada, which consists of 90 athletes from across the country.

This is the first time since 2018 that the games are taking place due to the pandemic. Normally athletes have to attend nationals and based on scores from that event, can qualify for the international event.

However, this year Higgins was able to compete at local competitions and since he was the best powerlifter in Saskatchewan, he was chosen to go.

“It was a little bittersweet [telling the athletes] because we got to tell them and then we had to tell them to keep a secret for a little bit,” laughed Lozinsky. “It’s awesome and you can tell the excitement. A lot of them put in a ton of work so it’s rewarding.”

Higgins trains four times a week with Tanner Kyle out of Trench Fitness in Regina. The two have worked together since 2019.

“The biggest thing is he’s fun to work with. But when it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty, he’s serious so I don’t have to help him too much,” Kyle said.

“We’re like brothers. It’s definitely fun every day when you spend four hours a week with someone, you get pretty close,” he added.

Higgins, who is described as ‘the life of the party’ by both Kyle and Lozinsky, is excited to take his talents overseas and already has a goal in mind.

“My goal is to squat 500 pounds, 55 bench, or uh maybe about 410,” said Higgins.

“He’s pretty quiet [about the Special Olympics World Games] unless you ask him about it. He’s pretty calm, cool, collected. But I know inside he’s nervous and when the time comes, his demeanour will change. But in here, it’s like he’s not even going. He’s just focused and serious about training,” Kyle said.

When asked what he is most excited for, Higgins could not pinpoint one specific thing.

“All of it!” Higgins laughed. “All of it!”

The games are taking place from June 17-25. More information about Team Canada can be found here. Top Stories


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