IOWA ICON: A Name That Carries Weight
Champions of the Super Bowl, Stanley Cup, World Series and college football all have something in common with Jefferson, Iowa.
These days, every team looking to get stronger and faster is looking to this Iowa icon.
You can pass it in a blink. But a step inside will stretch your eyes wide open. And that’s fitting because, from the showroom out front to the factory in back, what you’re witnessing is one man’s vision.
“I actually was always doing physical labor,” Power Lift founder Jeff Conner says. “I just got burnt out on it, thought I was better than that, thought I could do something better for myself and my family.”
In fifteen years, Conner has gone from selling someone else’s weightlifting equipment to making his own.
“Equipment being used was mostly health club equipment, just mom and pop-made stuff.” So Conner decided he’d make the very best and sell it to the very biggest customers.
“University of Nebraska was a key role in getting our product off the ground. We had a great relationship with Boyd Epley there at Nebraska,” Chris Conner says.
Considered the godfather of strength and conditioning coaches, Boyd Epley’s endorsement soon had even bigger clients calling. Everyone wanted custom-built equipment to train athletes and turn heads.
“The recruiting race is all about image – a lot about image. And the weight room can help sell that image.”
That’s pretty clear at Iowa State’s new complex fitted out by Power Lift where recruits stop first.
Yancy McKnight got to design the Cyclone gym with Power Lift.
“To have the wow factor when you walk in the door and say ‘Oh my gosh!’ And then to have the functionality to be able to train small groups and big groups,” McKnight explains.
Not to be outdone, Iowa’s Chris Doyle will get his Power Lift weight room this spring.
“He said ‘I just want to spend $1 more than Iowa State,” Conner jokes.
Power Lift is delighted to indulge this muscular arms race – it’s making better athletes and making what began as one man’s vision into an Iowa Icon.
Power lift has also designed weight rooms for the Navy Seals, Air Force Rangers and every other branch of the United States military. They use nothing but American-made steel.