Craig Tullier discovered arm wrestling like most of us, on playgrounds and in cafeterias.
But Tullier had a gift at the table.
"I trained for four months and I went to the nationals and I got fourth in the United States," said Tullier of his early arm wrestling days. "Then I trained three more months and I went to the world and competed for Team USA and got third in the world at 16 years old."
Tullier's trophy case only grew from there.
"I've got 37 national titles and six world titles. I love it and I'm hooked."
The Denham Springs native and now, Lake Charles resident, has seen his sport grow with him.
"When I first got into it, you were lucky if you won a trophy," said Tullier. "I have won cups, belts, belt buckles, hats and shirts."
Now, his venture is more fruitful. He's collected purses up to $12,000 and at WAL402, he could be in for the biggest payday of his life as he competes for the World Armwrestling League World Championship.
"I want it really really bad and it has been haunting me because I want it so bad," admitted Tullier. "I'm having problems sleeping right now from it."
It's a title that has eluded Tullier with back-to-back second-place finishes.
This year, Tullier who weighs 195 pounds, will pull up in class at 215. And despite facing a bigger weight class, he's confident heading into his match with Jordan Sill.
"I have been studying him for about six months and I have watched every move he makes on video and I see where his weaknesses are and where he makes mistakes," said Tullier. "I'm going to attack right off the bat."
Tullier, nicknamed 'The Fury,' is known for his speed and power and his signature move, the high hook, which could give him the edge in the championship match.
"A lot of people think if you have bigger arms are going to win, but it’s not that. It has a lot to do with tendon strength and technique," Tullier said. "You could have a real strong bicep and if your hands aren’t strong, you aren’t going to win."
It's a match and title he's trained tirelessly for. Tullier trains more than two hours a day and six days a week after working 12 hours as a construction manager.
"It's a hard schedule, but when you want to be the best, you have to do what you have to do."
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