The New Force in Polish Strongman – Rafal Kobylarz

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rafal farmers smallAfter watching Rafal Kobylarz winning the Strongman Champions League event in Latvia, it was time to interview this new force in Polish Strongman.

Phil Burgess: How did you get into the sport of strongman? Did you do any other sports before?

Rafal Kobylarz:  I started to train in the gym and decided to try my hand at strongman competitions. Previously I trained football and powerlifting

Phil Burgess: What is your best competition result and what is your aim for the next 12 months?

Rafal Kobylarz:  In this year I think my favorite competition were :

  • -Strongman Champions League – Latvia (Olaine) – 1st place
  • -IHGF Highland Games Strength Challenge – Romania (Satu Mare) – 1st place
  • -Giant’s Live Poland – S?upsk – 3rd place where I qualified for Worlds Strongest Man 2015
  • -SCITEC European Strongest Team Challenge- Slovakia (Dunajska Streda) – 1st place, Croatia (Cakovec) – 1st place, Hungary (Tatabanya) – 1st place
  • Arnold Classic Europe Spain (Madrid) – 1st place.

Since January I plan to prepare for World’s Strongest Man 2015 as this is a very important event for me.

Rafal Truck Pulling
Rafal Truck Pulling

Phil Burgess: Strongman seems to be very popular in Poland? Why do you think this is? And do you get recognised as a strongman in Poland by the public? I remember Mike Jenkins saying that strongmen in Poland seemed to be like rock stars?

Rafal Kobylarz:  A few years ago it was like that, now it is a little worse after the departure of Mariusz Pudzianowski.

Mariusz was the star of the strongman, in Poland. 

Phil Burgess: What strongman has provided the greatest influence on your strongman career?

Rafal Kobylarz:  The model is Mariusz Pudzianowski for me and Sebastian Wenta and of course Zydrunas Savickas.

Phil Burgess: What hobbies do you have outside of strongman?

Rafal Kobylarz: Spending free time with my wife, training highland games, and watching movies and various sports on TV.

Phil Burgess: What two things have you learnt in your strongman career which you wish you knew when you started?

Rafal Kobylarz:  That you need to train regularly and slowly improve your results, and that I have to practice the most, events which I dislike.

ProlocCollarPhil Burgess:  If you were in charge of an international strongman federation what 2 things would you do to increase the popularity of the sport worldwide?

Rafal Kobylarz: I think that you could increase the number of events,and organize more competitions for amateurs.

Phil Burgess: Ok time for some personal stats, what’s your best log press, deadlift, squat?

Rafal Kobylarz:

  1. Log press- 190kg,
  2. Deadlift- 423kg,
  3. Squat- 353kg without suits and tape on knee. 

Phil Burgess: What assistant exercises do you do to support the log press and how often do you train shoulders?

Rafal wins SCL Latvia 2014
Rafal wins SCL Latvia 2014

Rafal Kobylarz: I training my shoulders once a week, my arms are not so strong.

In this winter I must train my arms more because this event is not my favourite.

Phil Burgess: Any last thoughts you’d like to share?

Rafal Kobylarz: I would like next year to be better than this. This is my dream…..