The deadlift is such a fantastic lift. It’s the type of lift that shows the true grit and strength someone possesses. Whether someone’s a deadlifter or not, there always seems to be a respect that follows a heavy pull. Fred Rice, a 72 year old powerlifter, has definitely earned my respect and will probably earn yours soon enough.
Three weeks ago Rice shared a video on his YouTube page where he celebrated his birthday with a heavy deadlift. It was a casual 72nd birthday 520lb pull at 198 lbs, which is ridiculous pound for pound strength. Thus proving age is just a number.
This video is epic in so many ways. First, he’s 72 years old. This puts Rice in a more than elite-tier class of lifters for his age. Second, Eye of The Tiger is blasting in the background – classic pump up music. Third, it appears he’s in a basement, which is where most of us begin our lifting careers. Lastly, when he yells after his pull, you can see the pure passion he has for this sport.
While this video is epic, Rice has other videos on his page that are equally amazing. In March of 2016, he won the WABDL Deadlift Nationals with a 523 lb pull for the 198 lb weight class. He was the best deadlifter in the 68-74 age class at 71 years of age.
If the above two videos weren’t enough, they get better. On October 5th, 2014, Rice posted a video of himself competing and winning the 2014 IPF World Masters competition for his age and weight class. This competition was held in Pilsen, Czech Republic that year.
He competed in the M4 (70-79) age category and was in the 205 lb weight class. His squat attempts were a green light 407 lbs, 440 lbs, and a red lighted 462 lbs (he hit parallel in my eyes). In the video description Rice talks about a hurt shoulder during the bench. He recorded green lighted bench attempts at 176, 203, and 214 lbs.
What’s truly great about this video are his deadlift attempts. Every single attempt broke a world record (EPIC), very few people can say they broke a single lift record three times in one meet. His deadlift attempts were 473 lbs (World Record), 518 lbs (World Record), and 540 lbs (World Record).
Rice is something special for the sport of powerlifting. He’s not only strong under the bar, but he has an equally strong passion for the sport. It’s athletes like Rice that provide motivation by their passion alone. Hopefully we continue to see big lifts from Rice in the year of 2017.
The deadlift is a special lift. This if the type of lift that can bring people together, as demonstrated in the Eddie Hall documentary. Out of the strength world it’s underrated just how amazing the deadlift can really be.
Feature image from Powerlifting by Fred YouTube page.