Kabuki Strength
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Andrew Bio Photo 2
Andrew Clayton

From my first sports experience of soccer goalie at age seven I learned very quickly I was competitive and hyper focused on getting better as an individual. I also picked up very quickly that I was not the most gifted athlete, and that I would have to study the sports harder to find areas I could capitalize on my strengths.

Growing up with six brothers I was immersed in various sports which helped me become well-rounded athletically, as I never specialized at any one sport. While I was not an elite athlete these principles of general preparation would carry me far in the sport of strongman, which I would dive head first into at the age of 16.

Through Youtube and World’s Strongest Man reruns I was able to find passion in strongman. I competed in my first strongman show in 2009 at 16. I got my butt kicked, but I was hooked. The door of the car had barely closed on the car ride back when I told myself “I can’t let that happen again”. In my next show I won the teen class.

In less than 5 years later I won teenage nationals, broke open men’s amateur strongman records at 19 that still stand today, and won my professional strongman status on the biggest stage at the Arnold. This made me the second youngest professional Strongman in America. To back my experience in the sport that same year I graduated from University of North Florida with a B.S. in Athletic Training. I had finally found methods of training, progression and understanding of the events that could lead to my success, even if I did not possess “elite” strength.

In the next two years I focused on improved body composition, and lost nearly 100 pounds. I began combining professional strongman competitions with long distance runs on the same weekend as I branched out in the sports world. 2016 would bring about another professional strongman card one weight class down (one of only a handful to do). Additionally that year I competed in my first Olympic weightlifting meet, marathon, ultramarathon and triathlon.

After over a year of dabbling I started to focus more on strongman – taking down world records in the 105kg class in both Circus Dumbbell and Axle Clean and Press. In December 2017 I competed in my last contest as a 105kg and won 105kg World’s Strongest Man. After moving back to open strongman competition I competed internationally in two Arnold Classics as well as winning a qualifier for the Giants Live World’s Strongest Man series.

In August 2019, unfortunately, I injured myself going for a record Axle Clean and Press. This injury allowed me to come full circle in realizing the need for a sound understanding of the sport of strongman and all that it entails. The disconnect with physical therapy and return to training led me to seek out the Kabuki Strength team personally for advice. While continuing to rehab my badly damaged knee I found another challenge. I took on a 24-hour Ski Erg ultramarathon and broke the world record while performing the feat seated.

Of my core values one quote resonates above the rest. “If you can’t, you must”. I enjoy working with people who have been told they can’t do something and changing their mindset to believe they can. I take tremendous pride in being more than someone who coaches but someone who cares. I am a big believer in the quality and intent of everything done in training. I spend just as much time thinking about training and contest scenarios which has earned me labels such as “technical strongman” and “cerebral strongman”. This mindset has, and continues to serve me well and helps me better assist others in mastering the sport of strongman. 

Intern Strength Coach

Florida