There are barely enough hours in the day for Aaron Henry to do everything he wants to do.
When he's not hitting the books at university, he's hitting the mat in both amateur and pro-wrestling matches. Then there's his mixed martial arts training, rugby, a part-time job and an active social life to maintain.
The busy 20-year-old is now focusing on wrestling for New Zealand at the Oceania Ametuer Championships in Guam next year after he scooped four golds and a silver at the nationals in Hamilton last month.
He started wrestling at 15 for Dilworth School while he was a student at Pakuranga College.
"I'd go there every day after school and train. I've always wanted to be a wrestler since I was a kid watching Brock Lesnar. He's the reason I do what I do. He was the NCAA champion and no-one could take him. He's the picture of hegemonic masculinity and he portrays that strong man mentality."
He joined Impact Pro-Wresting's group of 30 fighters as a teenager and developed his alter-ego, A-Class. As A-Class, Henry shows off slick moves like the Spinning Spinebuster, Tap'N'Snap and the Blackout to finish. "Pro-wrestling is very different to regular wrestling. There's a lot more training and gym required for it. I'm not good at jumping off the ropes but I've taken everything I've learned in amateur wrestling into the pro-wrestling ring and vice versa.
"I know it's supposed to be scripted but not a lot of it is and things don't always go to plan and sometimes you get hurt."
He once got yellow carded for performing a wrestling grapple during a rugby game.
He is working towards a bachelor of arts in sociology. This means as much to Henry as his sport right now, with exams soon.
"I'm still finding what I want to do but I'd love to do something in employment relations or social development. I'll still keep going with my wrestling."
- © Fairfax NZ News
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