Local Gym Celebrates Member Kayla Harrison’s Gold Medal Win
The following was submitted by Deborah Burkholder.
Paul Soucy says, “Training an Olympic athlete is fundamentally no different than training anyone else.” On Aug. 2, Kayla Harrison, Paul’s client, won the gold in Judo's 78Kg women's division.
The excitement at Paul's couldn’t be more electric. She is the first American male or female to win a gold medal at the Olympics in the sport of Judo. Kayla has been working with Paul for nearly six years. She won the junior world title in 2008 and two years later won the senior world title in 2010. Harrison’s Judo coach, Jimmy Pedro also worked with Paul here at the gym for his 1999 World Judo Title and the 2004 Olympic Bronze Medal in Athens.
Soucy states, “As a strength coach, I could not make the assumption that Kayla or Jimmy would be the strongest, quickest, or most powerful athlete on the mat. I had to be sure that both Kayla and Jimmy could outlast any athlete on the mat for the maximum length of a match and for five or six matches in a day to win a GOLD. Kayla and Jimmy both have enormous hearts and the drive and will to do the work required.”
Soucy’s clients are not only Olympic medal winners but also men and women looking to maintain an optimum level of conditioning for the daily rigors of life. High school and college bound athletes also work with Paul to prepare for their respective events. He’s had the business since 1991.