Barksdale Brothers Break Records

Published 6:56 pm Sunday, February 14, 2021

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Garrett and Wes Barksdale give a new meaning to “brothers in arms.” The brothers competed at the Strongman Inc United States Powerlifting Association (ASPA) competition Feb. 6. 

Garrett broke three state records with a total of 1,449 pounds lifted and Wes broke three state records with 1,146 pounds lifted at their first joint lifting competition. 

“The competition went well. I was nursing a hip injury, but luckily I didn’t have any issues with it. Squatted 565, benched 352, deadlift 540 at 217 pounds all for state records as well as a state record total. I am pleased with my first competition,” Garrett said. 

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“The competition went super good. I came in with a positive attitude and came out even better,” said Wes. “I squatted 408 for a state record, benched 270 for a state record and, deadlifted 468 for a state record. Also, got a state total as well.”

Garrett and Wes both qualified for the national level drug-tested competition in October to be held in Gulf Shores. The brothers have hopes of repeating their record-breaking performances.

Wes began power lifting when he was playing football at Crenshaw Christian Academy. At a school completion held at Pickens County, he took first in his class. Right then he knew he had found his knack, Rawl Barksdale, Wes and Garrett’s father, said. Powerlifting became Wes’s main focus following that win.

Wes’s first USPA competition was when he was 15 years old. He has broken several state records and a national record. Wes has a goal to compete in the nationals and then move on to the world competition. 

Garrett played football at Brantley High School, which is when he started powerlifting. 

“He was already a strong young man without weights,” said Rawl. 

Once Garrett started college at Auburn University, he joined a gym and focused only on powerlifting.

“I played ball and wrestled and lifted a lot but nothing like the weight they are moving. I’ve got a picture of me doing my Arnold Pose back in the day,” Rawl said. “Both of them always wanted to look at it. We are very proud of them.”

Garrett is a senior at Auburn University majoring in mechanical engineering. Wes is a senior at Crenshaw Christian Academy.