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Rules/info For Reverse Bending Challenge And Bars

David Horne

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Rules for Reverse Bending Challenge

by David Horne

After consulting Pat regarding the angles for bending, here are the rules.

1. For reverse bending you must attain a 45 degree plus angle of bend for bars/bolts from 6 inches upwards, and 40 degree plus angle of bend for bars/bolts below 6 inches.

2. The bend must be completed within 30 seconds. The bender may notify the witness that he's ready to start the bend, after which the witness will give the bender a signal to start the bend. The clock will start when the witness gives the signal to start the bend.

3. No part of competitor’s hands or forearms may touch the body. Upper arm down to elbow is allowed contact with chest/stomach.

4. Competitor may not lean against any stationary object. The feet on the ground are the only permissible contact.

5. The object being bent may not dip below waist level at any time during

the bend. Reference to "during the bend" indicates the time when you are applying force to the object, obviously while wrapping, resting or positioning for the bend your

hands sometimes are below the waist.

6. Hand padding can be of any suitable material, cloth, canvas, towel, nylon, leather, etc. but cannot contain any rigid components to add leverage.

These will be inspected by referee for compliance. *Material is to protect the hands of the competitor, not to assist by adding leverage. Nail must be wrapped immediately prior to competitor’s attempt in plain view of referee in charge. Allotted time period begins on referee’s start signal. Nail must be in referee’s plain sight at all times.

7. Gloves are specifically disallowed, as it is easy to conceal rigid material within the glove, create a fulcrum within the glove, and/or bunch up glove material to the point of being leverage assistance to the bend.

8. Wrapping or taping of any part of elbows, wrist, forearm, and hands is disallowed. Wrist and tendon strength is key to successful bending and any external aid that assists in tightening of tendons/joints or increases pressure in arms (such as elastic wraps or stabilizers) should be viewed as cheating. Tape or bandage may be applied to surface of fingers and/or palm only in the event of injury to skin and should be kept to a minimum as per judge’s discretion.

9. Application of adhesives or sticky substances to hands, nail, or hand pads is cause for immediate disqualification. These substances will prevent hand padding from slipping or rotating and will remove a necessary element of the grip from the bending process.

A Lot of the rules above are the same as for normal bending.

I will put the prices for the Challenge Bars up soon, I'm sure they will be similar to the last time. Also where the bars lie in difficulty when compared to bolts, etc.


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Sounds very good David! I am giving this a good think. Most of my bending is done Reverse. I might give er a shot.

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I'm suprised to see you guys allowing leather for the wraps.

Is there a maximum amount the wrap my extend over the end of the nail?

Can a rubber band be used to hold the wrap in place?

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Thanks for getting some interest back into this David. Double overhand is hard on my shoulders, and I am limited in doing it when I am training for serious bench press competition.

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Nick and Bob,

Good to see you are interested. I am having surgery on my shoulder soon, a year after my rotator tear. I also can't do any crushing and also have not benched for a year, although I can incline. I have found that reverse bending has a great strengthening effect in my wrists and forearms, in fact similar to armwrestling actually. Anyway this type of bending is the only kind I can do. I am always impressed by any great strength displays and massive DO bending is very impressive, and miles away from what I can do.

So this is just another challenge, that happens to be a great wrist/forearm strengthener. In the grading systems we will include G5 and G8 bolts and whatever else we find. This will help any americans interested. When you want a Challenge bar for an attempt you can purchase just one bar if you so wish.


I always used to use a tea towel, but got sick of the bar jabbing through and into my skin, and changed to some thin strips of leather. These work perfectly. Yes, a rubber band can be used to hold the wrap in place.

Since you have to hold half the bar in the steadying hand when bending reverse I don't think there is any 'leverage gaining' attempted in this style really. The wraps I use are 4" wide, and I have them touching in the middle when I start.


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  • 3 months later...

I have changed #1 rule to fall into line with the new FBBC rules.

It's now

1. For reverse bending you must attain a 40 degree plus angle of bend for bars/bolts.

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