The Test of the Einherjar began in 2015 as one of the world’s only “Super Total” meets; it featured weightlifting (often called “Olympic” lifting), and powerlifting on the same day with special prizes for the best totals on all 5 lifts combined. In 2019, we lost our minds entirely and added a second day of competition to the mix, and naturally this second day of action was all about strongman! Grand “Einherjar Elite” Champions would be crowned amongst those brave (crazy?) enough to participate in both days of action, and a wild set of events would be chosen to compliment the more standardized lifts from day 1.

In 2020 the Test drew athletes from as far away as Canada, and a dozen or so committed to the sheer insanity of competing in both days of lifting lunacy. I’ll focus on the strongman portion from here given the audience that will see this, and there is certainly a lot to say! Max Keg to Shoulder (told you these were unorthodox events haha!) kicked things off for half our competitors, and a variety of techniques were utilized to hoist the cumbersome barrels. Max Double DB Press was the first event for the other half of the roster, a test of strength rarely seen in modern strongman sport, but putting two dumbbells overhead was a hallmark of the old time lifters from the eras of men like Saxon, Goerner, and Hepburn.

We had two moving events to balance out our max events, with a Duck Walk to Block Carry for time to test how well our athletes could move with heavy loads, and deal with odd objects first. The second moving event was a Farmers Walk for distance with a twist – the handles were freely revolving making this probably twice as hard on the grip as non-revolving handles. Strongman isn’t about “the biggest numbers” as some may have you believe, it is about who is strongest at the challenges set before them on the day, and this was an incredibly difficult challenge for nearly the entire roster.

The final event was good ol’ fashioned Tug of War, and what a fun event this was. Athletes went head to head in round robin fashion (none of the classes were extremely large, so elimination brackets weren’t needed), with win/loss records determining placings, and head to head match ups breaking ties if applicable. Some matches were very quick, some were grueling battles, but all were exhilarating.

See yall next year at the Test of the Einherjar!

Happy training,

– Paul Mouser