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While the world had its eyes set on Julius Maddox’s attempt to become the first person to bench press 800 pounds raw, powerlifter Will Barotti was working to set his own world record. And he did just that when he bench pressed an unbelievable 1,105 pounds at the 2020 MM Power Wars in New York.
The difference between Barotti’s lift and Maddox’s unsuccessful 800-pound one is that the former did his equipped — meaning while wearing a bench pressing shirt. For those who don’t know, bench pressing shirts are made of a material that stretches as the bar is lowered to the chest. By doing this, it allows your shoulders, arms, and elbows to remain in a position beneficial to bench pressing.
They’re quite controversial in the lifting world, and some consider the use of them to be cheating.
Still, the shirts aren’t magic — you can’t just slap one on and add 50 pounds to your lift — and people like Barotti still have to be insanely strong to lift the amount of weight they do.
Check out his lift here.
As some people have noted, this is one pound heavier than Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson’s world record 501kg (1,104 lbs) deadlift (a reminder that “The Mountain” wore a deadlift shirt during his lift).
It’s also three pounds heavier than the previous all-time bench press world record, which was set by the iconic Tiny Meeker in 2013.