Teenage Strength — 18-Year-Old Sam Bishop Squats 319.8 Kilograms In Training

Bishop lifted nearly heavier than the Teen 18-19 world records in the 82.5 and 90-kilogram weight classes.

The future of powerlifting just got stronger. Sam Bishop — an 18-year-old who trains at East Race Muscle in South Bend, IN — posted a video on his Instagram page wherein he squatted 319.8 kilograms (705 pounds) in wraps. That is a noteworthy lift as Bishop previously competed in the 82.5-kilogram weight class. The current world record in the Teen 18-19 Division is 300 kilograms (661.4 pounds) scored by Liam Turnbull at the 2020 Global Powerlifting Coalition (GPC) Midlands Qualifier.

Bishop’s squat is 19.8 kilograms (43.7 pounds) heavier than the current world record in the 82.5-kilogram class. BarBend reached out to Bishop regarding his weight at the time of the lift, and he estimated it was approximately 198 or 199 pounds as he is moving up in weight to compete at 90-kilograms. Lucky for Bishop, his recent squat is also 9.8 kilograms (21.6 pounds) over the current Teen 18-19 world record in that division. Gianfranco Slepetis holds the record for his performance at the 2021 Alianza Argentina Powerlifting (AAP) Campeonato Regional. Check out Bishop’s lift below:


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A post shared by Sam Bishop (@sambishop2075)

According to Open Powerlifting, Bishop has competed in three sanctioned powerlifting meets since making his debut at the United States Powerlifting Association (USPA) Drug Tested Cupid’s Iron Throwdown in 2020 at age 17. His record is thus far unblemished as he stood atop the podium in every meet he’s entered, all of which were at 82.5 kilograms. 

Bishop will move up a class to 90 kilograms to compete at the Revolution Powerlifting Syndicate (RPS) Live Large Fall Brawl on Nov. 6, 2021, in North Canton, OH. He told BarBend his target total for that meet is 771.1 kilograms (1,700 pounds).

I would like to get as close to a 1700-pound total as I can, maybe even more if the meet goes well.

If Bishop successfully hits his goal total, it would be the second-largest ever scored by an athlete in the Teen 18-19 division. The top three totals in the weight class currently are the following:

90-Kilogram Total — Teen 18-19 (Raw w/Wraps)

  1. Darwin Suteerawanit — 787.5 kilograms (1,736.1 pounds)
  2. Gianfranco Slepetis — 760 kilograms (1,675.5 pounds)
  3. Travis McKinney — 750 kilograms (1,653.5 pounds)

To date, Bishop’s competition-best total is 692.5 kilograms (1,504.7 pounds), scored at his most recent contest — 2021 World Raw Powerlifting Federation (WRPF) The Battle XXIV.

Training to Move Up

Bishop is currently training four to five times a week. He trains the squat and the bench press twice per week and the deadlift once per week. Judging from his recent Instagram post, that volume is paying dividends for him. We’ll see if it results in his fourth consecutive gold medal and his first at 90-kilograms.

Feature image: @sambishop2075 on Instagram