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Sport Para athletics, Para powerlifting
NPC United States   
Place of BirthCarlisle, PA, USA
Human Interest
Impairment Information
Type of Impairment
Limb deficiency
Origin of Impairment
Further Personal Information
Partner Danielle Shultz
Carlisle, PA, USA
Landscape Architect
Higher education
Landscape Architecture - Pennsylvania State University: United States
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up the sport at age 20 while he was attending Pennsylvania State University in the United States of America.
Why this sport?
He began training through Pennsylvania State University's Ability Athletics programme. "I was up late at night and couldn't sleep, so I started looking for some weightlifting videos. I never really doubted my abilities as an athlete after my accident, but I needed to find a course of action. I didn't know any other amputees, so I wasn't sure where to start. I found all of these videos of amputee powerlifters on YouTube and then got involved with a programme through my college."
Name of coach
Mary Hodge [national]
General Interest
Jake (Athlete, 01 Jun 2019)
Golf, skiing. (Athlete, 01 Jun 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning gold at the 2015 Americas Open Championship. (Athlete, 01 Jun 2019)
Most influential person in career
US Para powerlifters Kim Brownfield and Ahmed Shafik. (Athlete, 01 Jun 2019, 08 Feb 2012)
Hero / Idol
US Para powerlifters Kim Brownfield and Ahmed Shafik, US American football player Tim Tebow. (, 12 May 2021; Athlete, 08 Feb 2012)
Superstitions / Rituals / Beliefs
"Before an event, I visualise the venue, the platform and the judges to create an image in my mind. It takes the nerves off the actual competition day because I already imagined it, so I'm able to channel the nerves in a good way without letting them affect me." (, 13 Jul 2021)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"A competition is just another day in the gym." (Athlete, 01 Jun 2019)
To win a gold medal at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (, 17 Dec 2018)
In May 2008, while working for his family's landscaping business, the brakes on the truck he was driving failed and he was thrown out of the window. The vehicle rolled over twice and landed on his legs. As a result of his injuries his right leg had to be amputated above the knee. (Athlete, 01 Jun 2019;, 15 Jul 2015;, 16 May 2008)
Other information
He works as a landscape designer for his family's business Cumberland Valley Tree Service in Pennsylvania, United States of America. "I'm the senior landscape designer for my family's business. I average probably 60 hours a week, and I'm in line to take over the company eventually, so that requires a lot of effort and attention. Between work and lifting, I don't really do anything else. I want to win at sport, and I also want to win at work. Nobody puts that expectation on me except for myself. My family has been telling me I should dial it back slightly [at work], and there's no harm in me working less overtime." (Instagram profile, 12 Aug 2021;, 12 May 2021)

In 2021 he said that having no spectators present due to the COVID-19 pandemic means he has adjusted his preparations for competitions. "For example, in Manchester [the 2021 World Cup event], there were no fans, just TV cameras and press. But in the middle of my third lift, which would have put me in position for a silver medal, somebody outside the platform area started clapping very aggressively and loudly. I'm taking my weight down onto my chest, and there's no noise, and someone starts clapping. I specifically remember hearing it in the middle of my lift, and I ended up missing that lift. So that's something that I'm going to be training and preparing for, because people might do whatever they need to do to try to get an advantage, and I can't let that potentially affect me." (, 12 May 2021)

He began working with a sports psychologist after missing the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. "The sports psychologist has really helped me since Rio, because I kind of flattened off at [the time of] Rio and wasn't getting better. Working with her has made me feel like I'm in control of the situation. Instead of getting small in the moment, I'm getting bigger or better in those big moments." (, 12 May 2021)

He has worked as a trained peer visitor with the Amputee Support Team of Central Pennsylvania. In the role, he has travelled around the United States of America to visit young amputees and veterans coping with limb loss. He also founded the Nittany Valley Amputee Support Group at Pennsylvania State University. "The peer visitors were so helpful and influential on my recovery process. I love being able to help others who are in similar situations as I once was." (, 17 Dec 2018;, 06 Jun 2013, 29 Jun 2011)

Competition Highlights (historical)
Paralympic Games - Para powerlifting
Rank Year Event Result
6 2021 107kg 218.0
World Championships - Para powerlifting
Rank Year Event Result
13 2010 90kg 167.5
13 2014 88kg 190.0
10 2017 97kg 192.0
  2019 107kg  NoM
ParaPan American Games - Para powerlifting
Rank Year Event Result
4 2019 107kg 200