Darren Sadler is a four-time World’s Strongest Man competitor and co-founder of the Giants Live Arena Tour. He was born and still resides in Boroughbridge, North Yorkshire. Now 42, and retired from competition, Darren, who stands 5’ 8”, was known as the “pocket rocket,” due to his incredible strength despite a relatively small stature. He has organised and refereed strongman contests all across the world and is one of the most familiar faces on the world strongman scene.
Darren began lifting at 17 and was soon competing in strongman under the influence of former World’s Strongest Man competitor Dave Warner, now a regular Giants Live referee. Being almost always the smallest and lightest in the field didn’t stop Sadler who was renowned for his tenacious attitude and remarkable strength for his size. In 2006 he became World Champion in the under 105kg weight division while still competing in the open category and was invited to test his mettle at the World’s Strongest Man.
During a break in competition in 2008, Darren opened his gym, Absolute Fitness, with wife Jenna in Boroughbridge. As his competitive career began to wind down, he organised a local strongman contest from his gym. The following year, in 2012 he first organised Europe’s Strongest Man at Headingly Rugby Stadium, Leeds and subsequently established Giants Live, with co-founder Colin Bryce. In recent years the Giants Live World’s Strongest Man Arena Tour has greatly increased its breadth of competitions and venues.
Darren believes his greatest achievement was to qualify for World’s Strongest Man on four occasions. However, his single greatest title was his win at the IFSA Under 105kg World Championships in 2006.
Britain’s Strongest Man 2007: 3rd
IFSA Under 105kg World Championships: 1st (2006), 2nd in 2005
World’s Strongest Man: Qualified in 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010
Darren’s most recent contest was the 2015 Britain’s Strongest Man contest in Doncaster, where he placed 6th, winning the Conan’s Wheel – his favourite event – much to the crowd’s enjoyment.
Personal Best Lifts
Darren retired from Strongman competition in 2015, although by then he had been running arena shows for several years. He now concentrates on organising Giants Live contests in some of the world’s best arenas.
In 2016, Giants Live’s Europe’s Strongest Man and World Deadlift Championships at the First Direct Arena, in Leeds, attracted a crowd of nearly 12,000, which has been regarded as the largest ever crowd assembled for a strength contest.
Another highlight for Darren and Giants Live was to hold The Strongman Classic in one of the world’s most prestigious venues – The Royal Albert Hall!
As well as organising and refereeing Giants Live’s full calendar of events for the 2022 season, Darren will also assist in refereeing and organising this year’s World’s Strongest Man in Sacramento, in May.
This season features the World Log Lift Challenge, as well as The World Deadlift Championships, in which Darren is hopeful that the current world records in these disciplines may be under threat, yet again.
In the Media
The Giants Live World’s Strongest Man Arena Tour events, as well as the World’s Strongest Man Finals can be seen on Channel 5 during the Christmas period and will feature Darren in his capacities as organiser, referee and co-host. Darren is often in front of camera explaining to the viewers the various stages of exhaustion the athletes will experience as they complete the events Sadler and his crew have designed.