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Reeves' barbell pinch deadlift


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Mr. America/Mr. Universe/actor, Steve Reeves would

have become 76 today.

In a former thread I mentioned about his deadlifting a

claimed 300 pounds by hooking his fingers under the

rims of the 45-pound plates on each side of an olympic

barbell. Some of the board members tried the lift and

reported some solid poundages along with horrific pain


Of course, the longer your arms, the more your advantage

in this lift. And the plate rim configuration matters as well.

Keep the rims pointing away from you (you'll need them

for hooking); the thumbs, as I recall are not needed as


Hopefully, those who tried this lift will again report what

they hoisted.

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Yes, if the barrell is lengthwise on the floor in front of


Load a 45 on each end of the barbell, then instead of

deadlifting it by grabbing the bar, grasp each of the

45s, one in left hand, one in right hand, then try to

stand erect by simply 'hooking' your fingers over those

two plates.

You will want the rim of each plate facing away from you,

otherwise there is nothing to 'hook' onto.

Unless you have a precision set of weights which fit

tightly on the bar, better use collars to secure the plates from


If you use additional plates, place some lighter plates

next to the 45s, so you'll be able to hook the 45s. In

other words if you put 2-45s on each end next to each

other, you must reach even farther to grasp them.

Good luck.

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Guest Boog495

Roark, I have, I guess what one might say long arms (36" sleeve length), but I`ve never seen any reference to a scale for arm length. Anyway, I find with the olympic bar high strain points in the shoulder joint. Did not want to test it to the point of possible injury. However, I do find the trapbar and ez-bar far more comfortable for me to do this movement. I saw a picture in David Horne`s Irongrip mag of an individual using a short length (it looks short to me) bar with a stradle stance, one leg in front of the bar and one leg behind the bar. What are your thoughts on this? (stradle stance). Thanks for any input

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Is it the photo of Jason Horne page 18 of the

newest Iron Grip to which you refer?

I would think this position gives a more direct upward

lift than both feet on one side of the bar, and since

the target lift is pinching not deadlifting it seems sensible.

Avoid injury, which equals delay.

Reeves certainly was not known for his strength; I

suspect he was perfectly suited for the lift earlier


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Guest Boog495

Yes, Roark, that is the picture. I wrote the post without referencing this particular Iron grip mag.. just went on recall. I see the lift is performed with a pinchgrip. I have seen pics. of this straddle stance being used with the hookgrip as you described, but for the life of me I can not recall.. maybe in an old hardgainer mag.. Oh well, it is a good movement and offers a different slant on moving weight.

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I just tried it.  I don't have a very strong grip (yet) and I couldn't get 200 lbs.  135 and 155 seemed really easy, though, and I got 185 off the ground.  I didn't feel any strain in the shoulders, but I didn't get near 300 pounds.  Since I can't do half of what a lot of the guys here can do on other feats, I bet a lot of people could get 300.

I think I might try this again after a few more months of grip training.

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Reeves was probably using the old style Ivanko plates with deepset rims.This would have given him more to hold onto.I once read that he did bentover rows using that same grip to develop his lats.

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If you reference page 20, Volume 1, no.4 of the Iron Grip Magazine, you can see that David Horne lifted over 400lbs in this lift in a previous Iron Grip Championship.  I assume that this lift was done on the same apparatus as Jason Horne is shown using for the reverse rim lift on Page 18 of the latest Iron Grip.  I am not sure if he performed this rim lift by straddling the bar or by using a standard deadlift.  

The rim lift was also an event used in today’s Iron Grip Endurance challenge.

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