Student Strongman Launches Fundraising Appeal for New Gym

Chris pulls a truck one of the challenges at Doncaster's Strongest Competition 2019

Strongman competitor Chris Colbert, a student at The Royal National College for the Blind, has been using ‘lockdown’ to keep up his impressive weight training programme at home.

Chris, who was registered blind at an early age, is determined to be ready for several strong man competitions, the first of which, takes place on Sunday 6 September. Chris will be the only competitor with a visual impairment at ‘West Yorkshire’s Strongest Man and Woman 2020’ competition being held at the Iron Wolf Gym in Knottingley.

The national competition, ‘Britain’s Disabled Strongman’ should have taken place in May 2020 and is awaiting rescheduling while Chris’s local competition, ‘England’s Most Powerful Man 2020’ is hoped to go ahead on 3 October. 

All of RNC’s residential students returned home in March 2020 – with remote support during lockdown – and Chris has used his time wisely to train in his garden using specialist weights. His current personal best (PB) is an impressive 240kg and he has been receiving one-to-one training from nationally acclaimed strongman Andrew Lumley as well as his gym, Viking Power & Strength’, both in Doncaster.

Chris will use his ongoing training efforts – including some interim goals/challenges – to raise funds for the vital upgrade of RNC’s on-site student gym which is specially adapted for use by visually impaired students at the College for their general fitness as well as those studying for sports and personal trainer qualifications. 

‘The student gym is a vital part of the facilities here at RNC, both for teaching and general fitness for the students,’ explains Aaron Rees, Teacher in Charge of Sports and Recreation, ‘But it requires specialist kit due to the VI needs of its student community and those training to become sports/personal trainers need access to the latest equipment that they’ll be working with, once they qualify and leave RNC for new jobs.’

Chris training hard in the RNC Student Gym

Chris hopes that the public will get behind his tough training schedule and donate towards the new student gym via this appeal on the RNC’s Facebook or Just Giving pages. ‘I am 100% committed, determined and raring to go so please donate to my appeal and this will make me work even harder,’ says Chris.

To help raise funds for RNC’s new student gym, please head to Chris’ JustGiving page here: 

On 10 August, Chris was interviewed about the challenge on RNIB Connect Radio by Paulina Kuchorew. You can listen to the full interview here:

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