500 lbs


Level 4 Valued Member
Slightly speculative question, and probably impossible to answer accurately. Just a bit of fun and something to aim for.

Taking the general population, what percentage do you reckon can pull 500 lbs or above in the deadlift? Not theoretically pull if they trained. But right now, as a measure of strength, are able to pull 500 lbs.

I can't see it being more than 1 in 100 (1%) and probably considerably less.

I think I've seen one person do it at my gym, which has a membership in the hundreds.

Even on this forum, with plenty of strong people who train seriously, I wonder how many can pull 500 lbs.


Level 5 Valued Member
I just googled and 500lbs is 2.5x body weight based on US average male. So for half the population it's even more. I doubt there are many people that can DL that without specific training plus there are the old, the young, the sick, the overweight etc. Take all that into account and I'd say only a very very small percentage of the male general population would even get close

Anna C

Level 9 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
I would guess .3% can do it currently. So yes, I'm saying 3 in 1,000. But I think at least 30% (that's 100x as many; 300 in 1,000) are fully capable of reaching it with a few years of dedicated strength training.

If the women's equivalent is 315 lb, same thing.


Level 9 Valued Member
It is rare, especially if I understood right and it's not about having done it some time in the past after peaking, but what the person should be able to do right now. That would mean the real 1RM would be somewhat higher. So the 1RM would be closer to at least 550lbs or such.

If I reflect on the couple of gyms I frequent, I don't think there's more than ten in total who could do it. So maybe a couple of guys in a hundred could do it. Of those I see at the gym, that is. The true general population, no.

I am not as optimistic as @Anna C when it comes to training it and the probabilities. But it may be due to our different understanding of the original question; there's a big difference between 500 and 550.

william bad butt

Level 6 Valued Member
I was in a WNPF powerlifting meet a couple weeks ago. I just checked out the results and did a quick count. There were approximately 32 male lifters (all ages, teenagers to 70+, of all different weight classes), that deadlifted. It appears that there were 12 of those 32 guys that lifted in excess of 500 lb for the deadlift. So a little bit better than 1/3 could do it at this meet.


Level 6 Valued Member
I don't know anyone face to face could deadlift 500 lbs yet, even in the gym that i join. On facebook it's still rare - only powerlifter and pro bodybuilder in Vietnam record that and post the clip

william bad butt

Level 6 Valued Member
FYI, I re-read Anna's comments about 315 for women. During the same power lifting meet I count 13 female lifters and 4 of them were able to break 315 lbs. So again, about 1/3, same as the men. I would expect this number to be an order of magnitude (or more) greater than the general population. Assuming that these folks are closer to their potential, this lines up with Anna's comment that 30% are capable.


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