Ventsislav Dimitrov Pulled the Heaviest Deadlift of All Time, 505 Kilograms

It’s not an official lift, but it’s the most weight ever lifted off the ground.

The bar keeps getting raised — literally. On December 2, 2023, Bulgarian powerlifter Ventsislav Dimitrov deadlifted 505 kilograms (1,113 pounds) at the 2023 Eisenhart Black Competition in the German state of Bavaria. Though this lift is not an official world record, it is the heaviest deadlift ever pulled by a human being. Dimitrov posted the clip of his history-making lift on Dec. 6.

[Related: The Conventional vs. the Sumo Deadlift]

The lift occurred less than one month after Dimitrov posted a video of him deadlifting 500 kilograms in training on Instagram. According to Open Powerlifting, Dimitrov has competed in three Russian meets as a Raw with Wraps competitor in the 100-kilogram (220-pound) class. The 29-year-old’s best deadlift in competition was 351 kilograms (773.8 pounds) at the 2019 World Raw Powerlifting Federation (WRPF) World Championships.

According to Dimitrov’s coach, Darislav Nikolov, the powerlifter weighed 99.5 kilograms (or 219 pounds) for the attempt. That means the Bulgarian pulled five times his body weight.

One important note is that Dimitrov’s deadlift is considered an unofficial lift; lifting straps are prohibited in powerlifting competitions, and taking a sumo stance is barred in strongman competitions. According to the Eisenhart Black Competition’s website, the deadlift follows “International Powerlifting Federation (IPF)” rules. The rules then state that “Deadlift lifting straps only beyond 400 kilograms” (this isn’t an IPF-approved rule), and “Black competition means Black competition rules: No discussions at all, just boost your limits and have fun.”

Despite its invalidity, the Bulgarian certainly boosted his limits; this feat places him in an elite club of people who have broken the 500-kilogram deadlift mark.

Other 500-Kilogram Deadlifts

  • Eddie Hall, the 2017 World’s Strongest Man (WSM) winner, was the first to pull 500 kilograms in 2016. He completed the lift at the World Deadlift Championships in Leeds, England.
  • In 2020, Hafþór Björnsson broke his record by one kilogram. The lift was met with controversy as Björnsson completed it at his home gym in Iceland. The 2018 WSM winner weighed his weight plates, wore competition-approved gear (straps and a deadlift suit), and was in the presence of a judge.
  • In 2022, Polish powerlifter Krzysztof Wierzbicki pulled 502.5 kilograms (1,108 pounds) in training. Wierzbicki’s lift occurred in training. Like Dimitrov, he wore lifting straps and adopted a sumo stance.
  • Later that same year, Jamal Browner completed a 500-kilogram deadlift in training with lifting straps from a conventional stance.

Hall is the only man to pull an approved lift in a sanctioned competition. Though it may only be a matter of time before we see an official half-ton pull in powerlifting. One man that many people think can do it is Danny Grigsby, who has the heaviest in-competition lift of 487.5 kilograms (1,074.5 pounds), which took place at the 2022 WRPF American Pro.

While this lift didn’t count as an official lift during the meet, Dimitrov has made a name for himself in the world of strength. He then upped the ante by saying in a different post that he wants to pull the massive weight for a double, which has never been done in any capacity. Only time will tell if we ever see it happen.

Editor’s note: BarBend is the Official Media Partner of the WRPF. The two organizations maintain editorial independence unless otherwise noted on specific content projects.

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