Junior 66kg Powerlifter Clifton Pho Deadlifts 283kg (4.2x His Bodyweight)

The 2017 Canadian Powerlifting and Bench Press Championships are currently underway. The Championships started Wednesday March 15th and go until Saturday the 18th. If you’re interested in watching, check out the live stream here. One of the biggest lifts thus far from the meet was junior powerlifter Clifton Pho’s deadlift.

Pho, 22, competes in the 66kg junior weight class and pulled an unofficial IPF world record with a 283kg deadlift. This deadlift is 4.28 times his bodyweight, which is absolutely crazy. On top of that, Pho makes the lift look so easy, possibly at an RPE 6?

A post shared by Clifton Pho (@clifton_pho) on

Pho completed this lift pulling sumo with a hookgrip. The current IPF deadlift record for the classic (raw) junior 66kg weight class is 277.5kg, which was set by Australian powerlifter John Paul Caunchi. It might be safe to say, Pho will claim this record soon enough with his latest 283kg pull.

In addition to his deadlift, Pho’s other attempted lifts were equally as impressive. He finished first for his class with a 215kg squat, 142.5kg bench press, and a 640.5kg total. To get a better understanding of Pho, his world record, and his lifts, I reached out to gain some brief insights.

Jake Boly: When you pulled 283kg, was that your plan, or were you feeling good and upped the weight after your first and second attempts? It looked crazy easy, what’s your highest pull in comp/training?

Clifton PhoI actually pulled 283kg a few weeks (see video below) prior for an easy single. This was the most I’ve ever deadlifted. The goal coming into this meet was a 500 wilks (he recorded a  508 wilks), which I obtained on my second attempt.

A post shared by Clifton Pho (@clifton_pho) on

A pull above the current World Record was the next plan. I was thinking about going heavier, but decided not to be greedy. Definitely had more and was actually planning on pulling in the warmup room after but never got the chance to (laughs). 

Boly: How does it feel knowing you just pulled a unofficial official world record?

Pho: I’m not sure if I can describe it. I just have to make it official now I suppose! I’m sure someone out there has done more, but it’s always been about the journey and the community for me…so world record or not, I’m happy to be here.

Boly: What are your two favorite accessories for deadlift?

PhoI would say pause deadlifts is really the only one. Tempo is cool too.

Boly: When’s your next scheduled meet?

Pho: My next meet isn’t set in stone yet, but I’m hoping to do the deadlift meet at the Toronto pro show and probably go to Worlds in Belarus. I was also considering this meet called War of the West I was invited to.

Pho is currently about to graduate from the University of Alberta with a BsC in Kinisiology. His end goal is to eventually open up his own gym and clinic, which is extremely cool with his growing experiences competing.

His lifts continue to get stronger and he’s only 22. The next question we should be asking is, when will Pho claim the official junior deadlift world record?

Feature image from @clifton_pho Instagram page. 

Jake Boly

Jake Boly

Jake holds a Master's in Sports Science and a Bachelor's in Exercise Science. Currently, Jake serves as the Fitness and Training Editor at BarBend.

He's a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and has spoken at state conferences on the topics of writing in the fitness industry and building a brand.

As of right now, Jake has published over 1,200 articles related to strength athletes and sports. Articles about powerlifting concepts, advanced strength & conditioning methods, and topics that sit atop a strong science foundation are Jake's bread-and-butter.

On top of his personal writing, Jake edits and plans content for 15 writers and strength coaches who come from every strength sport.

Prior to BarBend, Jake worked for two years as a strength and conditioning coach for hockey and lacrosse players, and a personal trainer the three years before that, and most recently he was the content writer at The Vitamin Shoppe's corporate office.

Jake competes in powerlifting in the 181 lb weight class, and considers himself a professional knee rehabber after tearing his quad squatting in 2017. On the side of writing full time, Jake works as a part-time strength coach and works with clients through his personal business Concrete Athletics in New York City.

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