Jeff Dabe


James Orlando had the chance to sit down with the Minnesota Phenomenon Jeff “Popeye” Dabe


Q. So when did you start arm wrestling?

A. I started 1981 my senior year in high school and did it for about 4 years.

JO. So you arm wrestled from 1981 to approximately 1985.Then what year did you come back to the sport?

JD. I believe it was 2012. In the fall Josh Handeland held a tournament in a local tavern, we just went to watch and Josh talked me back into it.

Q. Now what do find different from when you competed in the 80’s?

A. In the 80’s it was alot of brute strength now there’s alot of technique involved.

Q. So who got you started in Arm wrestling the first time?

A. My neighbor Bob Martin showed me and I was the first to beat him he was a crazy fun guy.

Q. What do you want to achieve in the next couple of years?

A. I like doing this for fun,but I would like to be in the top 4.I would love to give. Travis Bagent a match even if I didn’t beat him.I’ll be 52 in June I don’t really train.So it’s fun just to hold my own.

JO. Your still a young man remember we’re all old and young to someone lol.

JD. So true.

JO. Some of your top arm wrestlers are in their 50s Allen Fisher,Richard Lupkes,John Brzenk and so on.



Q. So where were you raised

A. I grew up in Hugo MN.We had a farm and lived on a lake and I use to row everyday when I was young.I graduated from Lake high school. My coach took us to a arm wrestling tournament for charity.

I beat everyone then stayed at it but these guys stayed at it and train daily.

Q. What does your wife think about you armwrestling?

A. She loves it she screams and yells at me when I’m pulling.Plus we get to do some traveling.

Q. Now isn’t that worth the training?

A.Yes i’d say its worth it.



Q. What devices do you use to train with?

A. I use a band hooked to a door knob and pull on it while watching tv also a pipe with a rope and a weight on it but only a few times.I’m not much for weight training.I like doing outside chores on our hobby farm.

Q. So do you train with Joseph Drellack?

A. Yes! He’s a nice guy and does awesome video’s.He got us on fox 9 on the fly show from the video’s he took with me in them.Kelsey from the show saw the videos and asked us both to be on the show.(You can find these videos on YouTube).

Q. What advice would you give a beginner?

A. I think it would be to watch and learn it’s alot of focus..Don’t be afraid to ask questions!!

Q. What armwrestler dead or alive inspires you the most?

A. Rick Rude I use to pullwith him back in the 80’s. He’s the one that told me what I needed to do to beat Scott Norton.

JD. I’m in the MN armwreastling Hall of fame that Josh Handeland put up.


JD. I might be living but not sure about a legend,haha

JO. Well in my book your a legend.

Q. So what’s on your hobby farm?

A. Horse’s, one goat out of 8,couple of dogs, 4 cats and 100 Koi and goldfish.

JO. I want to thank you for taking time out to show us a little bit of your life,it was TRULY AN HONOR and I hope that we get to meet one day.Your a awesome friend and ARMWRESTLER..