After a stellar breakout strongman season in 2022, Hooper is only raising (err, leg-pressing) the bar higher.
There are hot streaks, and then there’s the scorching path of triumph Mitchell Hooper left behind in 2022. In his debut year as a professional strongman, Hooper earned eight podium finishes in nine contests and won two of his last three competitions, including the 2022 Giants Live World Tour Finals and the 2022 Arnold Strongman Classic UK. He began 2023 with a victory in the 2023 Australia’s Strongest International (ASI). Now, as Hooper’s next professional display looms on the horizon, his strength makes it seem like he’s unstoppable.
On Feb. 19, 2023, Hooper posted an Instagram video where he completed a 771-kilogram (1,700-pound) leg press for eight reps. The leg training is likely part of the elite competitor’s ongoing preparation for the 2023 Arnold Strongman Classic in Columbus, OH. Set to occur on Mar. 2-5, 2023, the famed competition will feature other superstars like defending two-time World’s Strongest Man (WSM) champion Tom Stoltman and his brother Luke, as well as two-time WSM runner-up Mateusz Kieliszkowski.
Outrageous showcases of power, within or outside a sanctioned strongman context, are nothing new for Hooper. The athlete has kept busy in 2023, log-pressing 195 kilograms (430 pounds) for two reps in mid-February. A variation of the traditional strongperson Log Press will appear at the 2023 ASC as “The Austrian Oak.” Whether this event will be for reps or a max weight is unclear. Nonetheless, be it with his arms, shoulders, or legs, it appears Hooper is preparing for anything that might come on his plate in early March.
When the 2023 ASC concludes, Hooper will likely shift his focus to intense preparation for the 2023 World’s Strongest Man (WSM), unsurprisingly littered with a constellation of strongman stars. After blitzing the 2022 edition as a rookie, earning eighth place overall, he’ll undoubtedly look to build on those impressive results with his first-ever WSM title. The only exception this time is that Hooper probably won’t catch anyone off guard as a relative unknown.
Training feats aside, Hooper has been sharing occasional teaching videos about proper lifting techniques. One of the more notable was the Canadian strongman walking through how to lift a famed Atlas Stone in an efficient, safe manner. It seems if he has the knowledge, he’s willing to appropriately spread the wealth.
This year figures to be a monumental one in Hooper’s career. He’s already gained a significant foothold in the strongman sphere. Now, it’s about building a prolific legacy of success that seems like it’s only just beginning.
Featured image: @mitchellhooper on Instagram