In 2016, Gawain Johnstone, 32, became the first Australia-born male to squat 400 kilograms in a powerlifting competition. Recently, the Filipino-Australian powerlifting champion shared the benefits of powerlifting.
“The pure lifts of powerlifting, meaning the squat, bench press and deadlifts, are the basics of every sport,” Johnstone shared. “For every sport, there is an element of strength, whether it be power, whether it be endurance, or some level of conditioning. Those three lifts, they all aid every sport that is played, whether it be basketball, boxing, athletics, football, etc.”
On October 14, 2018, Johnstone will compete at the Frankston Arts Center in Frankston, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia for the ProRaw Powerlifting event “ProRaw Big Dogs 3.” The event gathers the strongest powerlifters in the world.
The “ProRaw Big Dogs 3” powerlifters will compete for $50,000 in cash prizes. Aside from Johnstone, the other competitors in the event are Andrey Malanichev, Eric Lilliebridge, Petr Petras, Daniel Bell, Shawn Doyle, Odell Manuel and Brandon Allen.
Johnstone was the Junior State Champion for powerlifting in 2009. He was also the National Champion in Australia both in 2009 and in 2010.
Weighing 180kg and standing 6’2”, Johnstone was born to a Filipino mother and a Scottish father in Australia. He spent most of his years growing up in the country but regularly visited the Philippines when he was young.
“I’ve been blessed enough to be able to create a platform to show that a Pinoy-Australian can be one of the strongest men on the planet,” Johnstone told Manila Times. “The reason why I have reached the stage that I am in now is because I chose to be great, and I choose to be the greatest, regardless of the naysayers. Pinoys and Australians are not renowned in strength sports.”
Watch Johnstone teach how to squat here: