Terrace arm wrestler Allan Heinricks has returned with another medal from another major competition.
He is back from Almaty, Kazakhstan, where he joined 1,500 other competitors from Nov. 30 – Dec. 4, in the World Arm Wrestling 2011 Championships, earning a bronze medal.
Heinricks participated in about 10 matches, and ended up placing third in able bodied 100 lb. grand master category – his highest-ever placement at a world event.
“I am very happy [with the result],” he said.
Heinricks said one thing different at this competition was the speed of other competitors, something he had to quickly adapt to.
He said three-time world champion for Canada, Dave Hicks, was helpful in showing him ways to slow down opponents.
With 25 hours of flight time in either direction to Almaty, it was quite the journey for Heinricks, who said the seven-day trip truly made him appreciate his own country.
One of the biggest issues for wheelchair-bound Heinricks was accessibility, which often left him stranded in his hotel between competitions as there was no way for him to get down the hotel stairs, apart from
finding people to carry him in his wheelchair.
Throughout his visit, Heinricks said not one wheelchair friendly bathroom could be found.
“It really upset me,” he said.
“You don’t appreciate things (like wheelchair access) until you don’t have them anymore.”
However, he said the people in Kazakhstan were very nice to the contestants and apart from the food, which he said was greasy, and the driving, which said was
frightening, he enjoyed his time at the tournament.
“They were great,” he said of the locals.
Next up for Heinricks will be heading to the 2012 Golden Arm competition in Sweden, where he said he plans to change his third place finish.
“I am going to change that to number 1 next time.”