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The History Of The Deadlift,

Including Deadlift Records

Aug 26,2013 / By Mick Madden / 9 Comments

While squats are considered the king of all barbell exercises, the
deadlift is a close second. Many will argue that there is no greater
test of raw strength than deadlift pulling power.
This article will take a detailed look at the history of the deadlift, as
well as present you with current deadlift world records.

The Early Years of the Deadlift Goerner and Peoples

The history of the barbell deadlift can be traced back to Hermann
Goerner circa 1910 to 1920. While Hermann was not the first man
to perform this lift, he brought the deadlift into the public spotlight.
At 6, 290 pounds, Hermann Goerner was a deadlift master. He
trained every possible variation, from the one finger deadlift, to the
one-handed deadlift, and of course the conventional two-handed

Goerners best 4 finger deadlift was a whopping 596 pounds.

Goerner was also credited with a 728 double overhanded deadlift,
and an 830-pound deadlift using an over-under grip. These lifts were
Prior to 1946, the official deadlift world record was 650 pounds. In
September, 1946, deadlift legend Bob Peoples broke that record by
pulling an incredible 651 pounds while weighing a mere 175 pounds.
On October 4th, 1947 Bob Peoples become the first man in history
to officially deadlift 700 pounds. In 1949, at a bodyweight of 181
pounds, Bob Peoples broke his own record by pulling 725.75 pounds.

The Amazing John Terry

Though Bob Peoples deadlift numbers were unheard of, he was not
the only potent deadlifter of his era. John Terry of the York,
Pennsylvania Barbell Club managed a deadlift of 610 pounds while
weighing a mere 132 pounds. This deadlift was pound for pound the
strongest in the world.

The Modern Era Ben Coat to Andy Bolton

Bob Peoples held the deadlift record for 12 years. In October of
1961, Canadian Ben Coats became the first man in history to
deadlift 750 pounds. He did so at a bodyweight of 270 pounds. A
mere 8 years later in 1969, American Don Cundy smashed the 800
pound barrier by deadlifting 801 pounds at a bodyweight of 275
During the 1970s and 1980s, deadlift records continued to fall. In
1975, powerlifting legend Vince Anello became the first man in
history to deadlift over 800 pounds while weighing under 200
pounds. He was able to pull 805 pounds at a bodyweight of 198.

Later that year Anello bested his own record, hitting an 809 pound
pull at a bodyweight of 198. By 1977, Vince Anello was able to pull
811 pounds, but at a bodyweight of 220 pounds. By November of
1978, his weight was back down to 198 pounds. It was during this
time that Vince pulled an amazing 815 pounds.

Big Men, Little Men Amazing Deadlift Numbers

Vince Anello wasnt the only deadlifting stud from his era. The 1970s
also witnessed amazing pulls by some of the biggest and smallest
lifters in the history of powerlifting.
In 1974, 123 pound deadlifter Mike Cross managed a 549 pound
pull, while 148 pounder Don Blue was deadlifting 625 pounds. That
same year 242 pound deadlifter John Kuc ripped an incredible 849
pounds off the floor.
One year later, in 1975, 350 pound behemoth Don Reinhoudt
deadlifted a mind-blowing 881 pounds.
Deadlift records continued to fall throughout the rest of the 70s. In
1979, Lamar Gant deadlifted 617 pounds while weighing only 123.
1982 saw the first 900 pound deadlift in the history of powerlifting.
On December 12th of that year, 295 pound Dan Wohleber set an alltime world record of 904 pounds.
Wohlebers pull was not the only amazing feat of the 80s. Lamar
Gant also managed a 682 pound deadlift while competing in the 132
pound class. This record still stands today.

Along Came Ed Coan and Andy Bolton

By 1984, Ed Coan began making a name for himself. He pulled 788

pounds at a bodyweight of 181. By 1985 Ed was competing in the
198 pound class and deadlifting 859 pounds.
6 years later, on July 28th, 1991, Ed Coan pulled arguably the best
deadlift in the history of powerlifting 901 pounds at a bodyweight
of 220.
15 years later, Andy Bolton hoisted an unbelievable 1003 pounds of
the ground and changed the world of deadlifting forever.

Current Deadlift World Records

114 Pound Class E. Sajeeva Bhaskaran: 573.2 pound


123 Pound Class Lamar Gant: 639.3 pound deadlift

132 Pound Class Lamar Gant: 683.4 pound deadlift

148 Pound Class Dan Austin: 705.5 pound deadlift

165 Pound Class Oleksandr Kutcher: 793.7 pound deadlift

181 Pound Class Giovanni Brunazzi: 793.7 pound deadlift

198 Pound Class Ed Coan: 859.8 pound deadlift

220 Pound Class Ed Coan: 901.7 pound deadlift

242 Pound Class Yuriy Fedorenko: 892.9 pound deadlift

275 Pound Class Konstantin Konstantinovs: 948 pound


308 Pound Class Konstantin Konstantinovs: 939.2 pound


308+ Pound Class Benedikt Magnusson: 1015 pound


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