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History of the deadlift

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SteveIconHistory of the deadlift10-12-2010 @ 10:32 
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History of the Dead Lift

From 0 to 900 lbs and Beyond


By
Rickey Dale Crain and Donald Neil Crain


It Ain't Braggin', If You Done It.
~Dizzy Dean


The first man to popularize the Dead Lift was one who we probably could consider as one the greatest ever on it. In the 1910-1920 era a South African German named Hermann Goerner, was light years ahead of the rest of the world on the Dead Lift. While it is true that the lift was not competed on in official competition in those days, he made it as popular as any other lift. The emphasis in those days was on the one arm and two arm overhead lifts among the amateurs and other supporting feats by the professionals. However, among those who did train on it, none were capable of more than 600-650 lbs. Goerner's lifts, made in workouts with many witnesses, were unbelievable. Hermann was over 6 ft. tall and weighed about 290 lbs. (And he had no big belly to get in the way.) He trained on the dead lift in ways no one else had done or probably ever will do. He trained on one finger, two finger, four finger, one hand, and two hand dead lifts. He did a four finger dead lift (using index and middle fingers) of 596 lbs., and a two hands overhand lift of 728. In the reverse grip, Hermann dead lifted 830 lbs. To show he had second pulling power also, he pulled with an overhand hook grip 554 lbs. to waist lever. Hermann trained at the Leipzig, Germany Athletic Club. Goerner's lifts were all unofficial, but still more than amazing.

The official world's heaviest dead lift was 650 lbs. until September, 1946 when Bob Peoples, a Tennessee farmer, pulled 651 lbs. at 175 lbs. bodyweight. In those days, to get an official dead lift record you had to do it at a three Olympic Lift meet. One year later, on October 4, 1947, Bob became the first man in history to officially dead lift 700 lbs. He performed it at the Chattanooga, Tennessee YMCA Strength Show put on by Bob Hise. People weigh 185 lbs and used the overhand hook grip. Finally in 1949 Bob Peoples made his best dead lift, a 725 lb. monster, at a bodyweight of only 181 lbs.

In the 1930's and 40's the worlds best dead lifter pound for pound was John Terry of the York, Pennsylvania Barbell Club. He lifted 610 lbs. in a workout at 132 pounds bodyweight.

Bob Peoples' record stood for 12 years. Ben Cote, a 270 lb French Canadian from Quebec pulled a world record 750 in a contest against Doug Hepburn in October of 1961. Don Cundy of St.Paul, Minnesota made the first official dead lift of 800 or more, doing 801 at 275 bodyweight in August of 1969.

Vince Anello from Ohio was the first man under 200 lbs to lift 800 doing 805 at 198 in 1975 at the AAU Senior Nationals in York, Pennsylvania. Later in 1975 at the Worlds in Perth, Australia, Vince pulled 809 at 198 lbs. Anello went up to the 220 class in 1977 and pulled a world record 811 on May 29. Vince went back down to 198 in November 1978 and dead lifted another world record of 815.

In 1974 records were broken in three weight classes. Mike Cross of Chattanooga, Tenneessee pulled 549 at 123. Don Blue at 148 lifted 625 and John Kuc at 242 dead lifted 849. In 1975, Done Reinhoudt at about 350 lbs pulled 881, the heaviest lifted up to that date. Jerry Bell became the 1st. 165 lb'er to reach the magic 700 lbs. He did 702 in May, 1978. John Kuc roared back in 1979 at the Worlds with another record of 860 as a 242lber. World records were really flying in 1979, with Inaba of Japan pulling 496 at 114, Lamar Gant doing 617 at 123 in the Worlds, and Troy Hicks pulling 640 at 148. Inaba pushed his record up to 512 in the 1983 Worlds in Gothenberg Sweden.

In 1980 at the World Championships in Arlington, Texas, Rickey Dale Crain had to pull a world record 661 at 148 to win and did just that. In 1981 Rick Gaugler pulled a world record 705 at 165. Rickey Dale crain upped it to 716 2 years later.

On December 12, 1982 another milestone was reached in the deadlift. On that day Dan Wohleber of Ohio broke the 900 lb barrier. Dan pulled 904 at less than 275 bodyweight.

Lamar Gant was the best deadlifter, pound for pound in the 1980's. He pulled a WR 683 at 132, which is still the record. Dan Austin did 694 at 148 in 1989 Senior Nationals for a WR. Then at the 1994 Seniors Dan pulled a WR 744 at 165. Ed Coan, maybe the greatest deadlifter over 200 lbs bodyweight, did 788 at 181 in 1984 at the Srs. in Dayton, Ohio. Ed moved up a class the next year and on July 7, 1985 before a packed house in Chicago pulled a WR 859 in the 198 class. Coan saved his best for July 28, 1991 at the Senior Nationals in Dallas, Texas. Now lifting at 220, Ed pulled an unreal 901 lbs.

Among the women dead lifters, Gayla Sue Crain was the 1st 132er to pull 400, doing 407 in May, 1980 at Kansas City. In February of that year she did 369 at 123 and in July 352 at 114, all World Records. Ruthie Shafer of Oregon was probably the greatest woman dead lifter, pound for pound, of all time. Ruthie pulled 536 at 148 on May 20, 1984. In 1995 at the IPF Womans World in Chiba, Japan, Soukhorouk of Ukraine, at 165lbs. lifted 556. This was the highest dead lift for all classes at the time.

In the year 2006 the powerlifting world witnessed the first 1000 lb. deadlift by the great Andy Bolton of England at the WPC World Powerlifting Championships in Lake George, New York. November 2, 2006 will indeed be remembered by those who saw the 1003 lbs. being hoisted by a mountain of a man, and realize that a new era in deadlifting had dawned.
IainKendrickIcon...10-12-2010 @ 10:54 
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some nice relaxing jazz.
Member 77, 12727 posts
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Nice little article. Cheers for posting.
JCIcon...10-12-2010 @ 13:47 
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technical retard
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Nearly 600lb, 4 finger deadlift! Eek
d_singhIcon...10-12-2010 @ 14:16 
Gillette - The best a man can get
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any one tried finger deads on here
james_grahameIcon...10-12-2010 @ 14:58 
Member 1525, 95 posts
Picture of Goerner doing 4 finger deadlift (index and middle only of each hand) of 595.5lbs 1933 in Leipzig.

http://www.davidhorne-gripmaster.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&a...
d_singhIcon...10-12-2010 @ 15:16 
Gillette - The best a man can get
Member 466, 1389 posts
SQ 196, BP 120, DL 254
570.0 kgs @ 74kgs UnEq
thats crazy ...fingers must be like sausages
d_singhIcon...10-12-2010 @ 15:16 
Gillette - The best a man can get
Member 466, 1389 posts
SQ 196, BP 120, DL 254
570.0 kgs @ 74kgs UnEq
thats crazy ...fingers must be like sausages
LukeCIcon...10-12-2010 @ 18:23 
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The one in the guns and roses teeshirt.
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Gotta love the deadlift!
Tom_MartinIcon...10-12-2010 @ 18:25 
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No one believed him anyway.
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2013 - Tom Martin - 470kg in the 100's...
Wayne_CowdreyIcon...10-12-2010 @ 18:36 
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'very impressive' ............ 7 years ago.
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Question for dead lift historians... when was sumo style invented?
aaron_lohanIcon...10-12-2010 @ 19:27 
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Hasn't always been a bench press specialist
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Wayne_Cowdrey said:Question for dead lift historians... when was sumo style invented?


Late 19th century- i posted a thread detailing the origin of the sumo deadlift a few years ago.
http://www.sugdenbarbell.co.uk/forum/Who-invented-the-sumo-dea...
General_illIcon...10-12-2010 @ 19:49 
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3rd place Europes strongest man 2016 U90kg
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Steve said:
Dan Austin did 694 at 148 in 1989 Senior Nationals for a WR.


Any relation to you Col ?
BoarIcon...10-12-2010 @ 19:56 
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I can't believe you've done this.
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2013 is gonna be a great year !!

i plan on nailing 265 ...get the f**k out !!

as i own the domain name deadlift.co.uk i claim ownership of the deadlift itself !!

everytime you do one...7pence to boar.

for sumo , pay some other c**t 7p , i dont want anything to do with it.
Wayne_CowdreyIcon...10-12-2010 @ 20:16 
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'very impressive' ............ 7 years ago.
Member 400, 19389 posts
Boar said:
for sumo , pay some other c**t 7p , i dont want anything to do with it.


Ha ha! Sumo is cool.
kevIcon...10-12-2010 @ 20:21 
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u75kg World Powerlifting Champion.
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Wayne_Cowdrey said:
Ha ha! Sumo is cool.


You've changed :-(

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