A new meaning for power couple

28 September 2022

Dani Martin has been involved in all sorts of sports and athletics since childhood. In 2012, while working on her Bachelor of Physical Education (and later on also completed a Bachelor of Education), she was training for an Olympic Weightlifting meet. A friend recommended she join U of A’s student-led powerlifting club as a way to meet like-minded people who shared an interest in barbell sports, so she did. The president of the club at this time was Shane Martin (Bachelor of Arts, 2014). He was initially drawn to the U of A because of the club’s multiple national championships and world athletes, then started on the club’s executive board as an Advisor and then became president.

The two eventually met at a club dinner, talked all night, started dating and got married in 2016! “[Joining the club] was one of the best decisions I made,” says Shane. Not only did I meet my wife, I made lifelong friends, built the skills to run a successful small business and it made my university experience a cherished memory.”

Joining the club offered them so many rewarding experiences. Meeting each other is at the top of the list, but they were also able to build skills and endurance for other areas of their life. Dani was able to endure the physical demands of crouching beside desks as a teacher and Shane gained the knowledge to start his own business, Smartlifts. Both benefited from being club president (Dani also served from 2016–17) which provided them the skills to coordinate large events, such as field trips, seminars, workshops, events and coaching.

“Participating in CCR programs is a great way to meet people and to learn a new sport or skill,” says Dani. “We’re in a time where it is so important to increase your support for mental health and find balance between work, studies and leisure. Joining a club gives you a planned break to do something for you. And who knows - you might just meet your future partner!”