178lb Phillip Brewer Bench Presses 490lbs Raw (2.75x His Bodyweight)

Every strength athlete typically has one lift they’re naturally good at or prefer, and in Phillip Brewer’s case that would be the bench press. Phillip Brewer, or @unrealphil as he’s known on Instagram, is what we could consider a bench press phenomenon. He currently holds multiple raw bench press records in the RPS, SPF, and RUM powerlifting organizations.

Four days ago, Brewer shared an Instagram video that features a raw 490 lb press at a weight of 178 lbs. That bench is nearly three times his bodyweight, which is a strength feat few athletes can successfully complete in their lifting careers. This bench was performed at the APA The Natural State Championships, which were held March 11th.

A post shared by Phillip Brewer (@unrealphil) on

He did get stuck for a millisecond at a sticking point a little before lockout, but powered through without a hesitation. Besides that brief pause, Brewer’s lift moved incredibly smooth, especially off the chest. The speed makes you wonder, does he have another 5-10 lbs in the tank?

Brewer’s epic bench press videos, often at bodyweights of 165 and 181 lbs (his competition weights) usually result in other lifters tagging their training buddies saying, “Get your bench game up.”

In addition to the above recent video, Brewer also lifted in the ANIMAL cage at this year’s Arnold Classic. In the cage, he hit some seriously heavy singles including a 480 and 505 lb bench. Yes, the benches were touch-and-go, but 505 lbs at Brewer’s bodyweight is insane. At no point did Brewer’s speed slow down, which is possibly the most impressive part.

Brewer also benched 405 lbs for 10-reps in the cagepossibly as a warm-up? Lately, it seems like we’re seeing more and more bench presses that leave us in awe scratching our heads. From Jeremy Hoornstra’s recent 675 lb press to Kirill Sarychev’s 529 lb press for ten, it’s been an epic couple weeks for the bench.

Not every strength athlete utilizes the bench in their training, but that’s not to say strong presses shouldn’t be recognized. These guys are lifting nearly 3+x their bodyweight and make it look easy.

Feature image from @unrealphil 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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