I looked at the following lifts as these are common amongst strength athletes, achievable in a gym environment and typically used in competition. Aspects of these lifts are not standardised as every individual has access to different styles of equipment and stone lifts have varying heights and sizes so all the data below is to be taken at face value. Events including yoke, farmers and medleys were not included due to the large variation of equipment, environment, loads and distances making it difficult to cross compare.
Average of all lifts
Body mass to lift ratio as shown, improves throughout all categories from novice to international with it plateauing between national and international open level mostly due to there increasing body mass. The numbers speak for themselves with deadlift having highest ratio than squat and bench press more than overhead. Observable with in the data is a potential correlation between bench press (BP) and overhead press (OHP) which would answer the question of if bench press exercise would be beneficial to improve OHP and vice versa. An aspect shown is that squat and deadlift ratio have a 0.3-0.6 separation and amongst the top 20 (bearing in mind the data is only from 8 athletes) have a 0.3 difference suggesting that it doesn’t pay to be significantly stronger in one area.
Looking at lift to body mass ratio is a typically done in all sports however little is done looking at comparison to lifts and I can’t take all the credit for this and this idea stemmed for Tom Hibbert (owner of Winning Health Solutions Gym in Southampton). The data shows deadlift to squat being 1.1:1 throughout all categories with deadlift typically being 2 times their overhead press and on running a correlation on international open athletes shows a moderate correlation (r=0.7) supporting this relationship. The most noticeable change between the top 20 in the world and all other categories is the deadlift to bench press exceeds 2:1.
Data presented for all categories to demonstrate the gradual progression of lifts throughout all categories for transparency of the data collected. This data shows that the more an athlete advances from novice to international level the more they are required to lift and this alone doesn’t show particularly anything unexpected but does define loads that each level lift to assist with setting competitions.
Unfortunately, I was unable to obtain any data from any international U105 athletes which impacts the data set making it difficult to compare and know if there is any difference between national and international level.
Open category shows the smallest variation between body mass to load ratio amongst the level of competition and between other categories and this is most likely due to having no limit to body mass the athletes have, however there is a definitive clear pattern in amount of load lifted between competition level and other categories. In collecting this information there is data missing as some exercises have not been tested by the novice and regional athletes who submitted their stats.
This data is only based on 8 athletes so take these values with a pinch of salt
Hopefully this information can help for a number of reasons:
- Assist in setting weights ranges for events in competition.
- Give a guideline to athletes to know what is required at each level from an amount of load lifted and body mass to load ratio per category.
- Help progress the sport in gathering data on levels of strength required at competition level.
- Help trainers and coaches have an idea of how to progress their athletes in training
Areas for development:
- Other than the obvious of requiring more results as apart from opens international level where I got 35 all the other categories were in low 20’s and there is also a lack of female competitor data to make comparisons.
- Unable to carry out any statistics on any of these to see if there is any statistical significant difference between categories and lifts so the more data the merrier so will put out another post in a few months and try and collect more and hopefully should get enough to really look at any difference.
Hope this helps.