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Metal Militia Oceania - NZ Division

I’m Angela Wilkinson I am MMO New Zealand Rep & Powerlifting coach at Cage Barbell Papakura Auckland New Zealand.

I got injured in 2021 when I was working into a Raw meet and it was potentially a career ending injury that could not of been avoided as it was discovered there was an underlying autoimmune condition that meant also it could not be operated on. Depression was very real, I still benched and did my own rehabilitation as well as going to my specialists. I thought well, I may not be able to squat or deadlift but I’m going to bench. I got to work on bringing up that lift as well as concentrate hard on my rehab. While I rehabbed I came across Metal Militia athletes in a comp in America it was dark, with smoky lights and huge weights. I was inspired and knew I want to be part of that. In my mind I could not quit I would adapt.

I watched the Metal Militia equipped powerlifters and I wanted to learn it too. I searched for information and found David Maddox from Metal Militia Australia; he was so encouraging as was Chris Skaroupka and the rest of the federation, they felt like extended family to me. So I got some second hand gear here in NZ and slowly started to take on the challenge of incorporating equipment lifting with help of my team as I new I could not do this alone. Along with developing my raw strength and accommodating exercises I found with smart programming I returned to squatting and deadlifting and started the challenge of adding in shirted bench also.

I formed an awesome friendship with the boys from Metal Militia Australia which is now Oceania. In Auckland covid heavily restricted us and it went on for months (in reality we could go back to restrictions) but during those times they were my light and still are my light. I talked to them everyday and I was determined to get back on the platform. I encouraged my team to do it, too. I guess this was getting back on the horse. How to do this in covid restrictions was a challenge in itself but I could see how I could achieve it and be in the government regulations at the time.

So I created a NZ covid compliant meet and with encouragement from Metal Militia Australia we did a push pull and a 3 lift and we kept in the limits and had just under 20 lifters at each meet which was a requirement in NZ. I think this was a NZ first as all meets through Auckland had been cancelled or pushed out. We did them outside and I had built my backyard into a NZ covid compliant powerlifting space which I also coach powerlifting and strength training at, this is Cage Barbell Papakura.

We made our meets fun for everyone something to remember, something to enjoy! This is how I want to powerlift, with my friends, having an awesome time, conquering self, attacking goals, believing in ourselves.

Equipped Powerlifting in NZ is not big as yet, there isn’t many lifters but for me the challenge is amazing and I’ve encouraged others that I coach to give it a go as I feel it has changed my life for the better. I see how many goals you can do with equipment lifting, they are endless. It will take your lifetime to master and beyond the doors of Valhalla and so creating platform goals for others feels like a huge privilege to me.

Coming into 2022 I didn’t realise the possibility that we can actually bring Unlimited Equipped into mainstream powerlifting in NZ alongside raw and introduce the band style of bench. Equipment Powerlifting is fun, it's different, it's team orientated and it's a little scary but I feel it's absolute character building and very technical; it's amazing for the mind. Out of the woodwork others are also inspired and want to be part of this strength movement that we have introduced here. We now have meets in Auckland, Hamilton and Taranaki. The future is looking bright and I am in love with Powerlifting thanks to Metal Militia Powerlifting and Metal Militia Oceania and my team at Cage Barbell Papakura Auckland.

Life is what you make it, adaption is living and courage is taking that step forward into the unknown and going for it anyway and this is where true strength is realised. New Zealand will wave the flag for Metal Militia Powerlifting!

Ange Wilkinson

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Roy Albert
Roy Albert
Sep 14, 2022

I must mention that this is a fantastic post, and I value the specifics. You directly address Metal Militia Oceania - NZ Division. I decided to learn it after seeing the Metal Militia-equipped powerlifters. As I looked for information, I came across Chris Skaroupka and David Maddox from Metal Militia Australia. They were both so inspiring to me that they made the federation feel like an extended family. However, I'm currently seeking to do my physics assignment service for an assignment at school. I benefit from this and finish my work quickly. All pupils can benefit from the websites.

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