A lot of us spend the hours in the pub or SU, watching the rugby or football with a pint of beer or cider in hand, staying toasty warm away from the dark and wintery outdoors. One cold and dark Saturday in November though, a group of dedicated athletes from universities across the UK gathered in a gym in Swindon to test their strength against each other. Welcome to the 2018 MASS Wars!


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42 athletes from 8 universities competed in the 4-heat event this 18th November 2018 in a 6-hour physical battle, to decide which is the strongest university in the UK. Women and men competed across women, mixed and men’s categories over 4 heats to see who could complete the challenges in the fastest times and lift the heavies weights.


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In a team of 4, what combined total of 3 rep max’s do you think you could set for:
  • Squat
  • Bench Press
  • Deadlift


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Well, UWE One Too Many Asians (yes, that is what they named themselves) hit the heaviest combined total of 1875kg! Including a 150kg 3 rep max from Aaron Bulman. This UWE team went on to win second place in the men’s category, assisting the University of the West of England in winning the overall University Champions title. Go Team!


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Fear not, the women were just as fearless and put on a great show of strength in their heats. Hattie Pearsey and Molly Green in team Flexual Healing smashed through their heats to win the ‘womens’ category. Plymouth MASSive and UWE Deadpool won the men’s and mixed categories respectively. 


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The heats were a combination of strength exercises to show the strongest of the strong! The women’s, mixed and men’s categories meant that students were competing on a level playing field, in teams, but battling it out head-to-head to win each round. Check out the ‘parkours’ for each heat on the competition page here.


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David Bissell, MASS Founder, and all-around fitness fiend was the MC for the event and brought his usual panache and positive attitude to make this a successful MASS Wars. Although his attention to detail on form and dishing out of ‘no reps’ did bring him some hatred amongst competitors at certain times ha ha.


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We’ve learned a lot and have so many ideas for the next Wars, so that it is even bigger and better than 2018! Want to take part in the next event? Then keep up to date with our blogs and social media posts for more info. If you’re not yet a MASS society member, what are you waiting for? I’m sure you can beat Plymouth MASSive and Flexual Healing or Team UWE, the next time around… will you take on the challenge? So… next time you feel tempted to stray towards a pint on a frosty Saturday afternoon, why not head to the gym instead? Those barbells won’t lift themselves…

View the FULL Scoresheet from the event here.



Special thanks to Battleground Fitness in Swindon, which played host to the Wars and proved to be a fitting setting for this inaugural MASS Wars. Thanks also go out to our sponsors Maximuscle! 


Follow us on Instagram and stay tuned for the next MASS Wars! @masswars

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