At these Championships, two rivals met in the DISABLED category: Radosław Kwietniewski (Poland) and Dan Plexman (Canada). They both had little chance of living. I have already written about Radek Kwietniewski many times , now meet Dan.
PeSzy: You know I have to ask every guy from Canada if he plays hockey. However, Dan was not a hockey player. But he has Polish origins!
“My grandfather and his brother were from Poland. Our family name used to be Plczynski but it was changed to Plexman when they were exiled from Poland.”
PeSzy: You can guess that they came to Canada at the beginning of the 20th century, in search of a better life, like thousands of other emigrants.
September 30th 2008... A terrible accident at work, a huge fire and... 13% chance to live
“I’m a burn survivor who was burned in an electrical fire September 30th 2008. The surgeons gave me a 13% chance to live and were making plans to amputate both my arms from above the shoulder. Exactly 14 years later to the day on September 29 and 30th I was in France winning gold medals in both arms the IFA world championships. Now this year, 15 years later on September 29 and 30 I was winning gold medals again in both arms in Malaysia IFA 4 time world champion.”
Paradoxically! Dan says:
Being burned is the best thing that’s ever happened to me. If I wasn’t burned, I never would have met my wife and I wouldn’t have been introduced to the armwrestling way of life.
He survived! He still needs rehabilitation. Then Armwrestling appears in his life.
“Because my scar tissue from the burns, my wrists and hands fold inward so I wear splints at night, go to physiotherapy and stretch all day long. I saw armwrestling on YouTube one day and thought maybe this sport could help me stretch my arms and save me going to physiotherapy so much. I called my local club the Thunder Bay Giants and asked if I could come to their practice to be a “warm up” guy just to see if this sport can help with my range of motion.
After the first practice, I was hooked on the sport and by the second practice I was focused on my first tournament in 3 months.
Thunder Bay Giants Armwrestling Team Club
My armwrestling career is (still) short:
I’ve only been in 6 tournaments. First 2 tournaments were amateur and I placed 1st and 3rd and 1st and 1st in Able body / 176 to 199 pound senior division. 3rd tournament was 2022 Canadian nationals and 1 placed gold left arm and silver right arm in standing disabled 176 /80kg and 4th n 5th in masters 176; 4th tournament was 2022 IFA WORLDS and I placed gold medal in both arms 176/80kg standing disabled. 5th tournament was 2023 Canadian nationals and I placed gold left arm and silver left arm disabled standing 80kg. And I placed 3rd able body grand masters 80kg. 6th tournament was 2023 IFA WORLDS and I placed gold medals in both arms disabled standing 80kg.
Dan Plexman announces!
I just turned 50 years old this year and I’m not even past my prime for armwrestling!
In the world of armwrestling, friends, trainers, champions:
My coach Jason Dubray has taught me the most but a few months ago I was fortunate enough to take Devon Larratt’s 7 hour seminar and I was always a fan of his but now I have a deep respect for him because he treated all of us with such genuine kindness. Todd Hutchings is one of my favourite arm wrestlers because he started the sport late in life like I did.
Troy Eaton is also someone I respect and I truly appreciate the time he’s given me. I also like Todd hutchings because his style is completely different than mine. When I watch his matches, I know I’m learning something.
This sport and the armwrestling community has changed my life.
This community is very similar to the burn survivor community I belong to.
It doesn’t matter where I go in the world, I always lookup the armwrestling clubs and burn survivor groups in the area.
No matter where I go, I always have friends!
Thank you very much for the interview and greetings from your rivals from Poland!
To learn more about Dan or to contact him please visit his website at DanPlexman.com or email him at Dan@DanPlexman.com