U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Reginald Berry the chief instructor for the Staff Noncommissioned Officers Academy, pulls a weighted sled in the sled pull event in Okinawa's Strongest Battle of the North, Aug. 18, 2019, Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan. The competition challenges men and women to compete in physically demanding events to find the strongest on the island. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Karis Mattingly)
U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Reginald Berry the chief instructor for the Staff Noncommissioned Officers Academy, pulls a weighted sled in the sled pull event in Okinawa's Strongest Battle of the North, Aug. 18, 2019, Camp Hansen, Okinawa, Japan. The competition challenges men and women to compete in physically demanding events to find the strongest on the island. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Karis Mattingly)

Okinawa's Strongest Battle of the North

by Pfc. Karis Mattingly
U.S. Marine Corps

Members of the U.S. community competed against one another Aug. 18, 2019 in Okinawa’s Strongest: Battle of the North. The one day event was a combination of speed and strength not normally seen in a typical strong man event.

“Today is a smaller condensed version of the main competition with three different events,” said Taryn Miller, the Marine Corps Community Services adult sports specialist. “These smaller competitions have given people the opportunity to try the different challenges to see if they are intrigued by it.” 

The competitors were divided into four different weight classes. The first event was the sled pull, which consisted of a competitor pulling a sled 50 meters. The second was a 100 meter wheelbarrow race combined with 10 deadlift repetitions. The third event was the atlas stone lift; this involved three different stones the competitor had to lift up and place on a platform.

“Today's event is strong man inspired,” said Miller. “We’ve created a really fun, competitive environment for people to come out here and try something that they’ve never done before.”

Competitors with the highest combined score in their weight class at the end of the competition were declared the winners. 

Gunnery Sgt. Daniel Kermeen, a sergeant’s course staff noncommissioned officer with the Staff Noncommissioned Officers Academy, won the male 150-200 pound weight class.

“It's an emotional experience,” said Kermeen. “This is an eye-opening experience to come out here and get this opportunity. Get out there and do work.” 

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