Ray Williams Squats 1,003 Pounds for an Insane Double

Ray Williams is one of the best raw squatters in the world, and he’s reminding us all why with this astonishing double he just pulled off in training at his local gym in Fulton, Mississippi. The number: “1003ish” pounds or 455 kilograms. That’s 95 percent of his world record of 477.5 kilograms.

We know, they looked a little high from this angle, but he sometimes trains with higher squats. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t bury them in competition.

He addressed his squat depth in a comment on his Instagram:

I know a lot of people see my training vids and be like WTH IS HE DOING!! And I know it is high but this is not a quarter squat, quarter squats is when you barely bend your knees…

I am about 1.5 (inches) high because I don’t see the point in squatting that low now, and I have huge thighs. if I was a thinner dude you would really see how low I am…

Lastly, man why does the world have such a problem saying good job? Like it baffles me how people who know so much about bodily mechanics and human antimony are not elite lifters or pioneers in human research….

That’s a pretty good question. Why does the world have such a problem saying ‘good job’? It’s impossible to say he’s a bad lifter since he’s literally the best raw squatter in the world, at least according to the IPF. Let’s not forget that last year he made this groundbreaking squat of 477.5 kilograms (1052.7 pounds), the heaviest ever made in that federation.

At the same meet, he earned the world record total with 1,105 kilograms (2,436.1 pounds) and secured himself a nice world record deadlift of 392.5 kilograms (865.3 pounds). So it’s safe to say he knows a lot about lifting.

Two days ago he posted this video that explained his thoughts on squat depth further.

Why is it that anything that’s outside the powerlifting cultural norm is considered just weird and wrong and blasphemous? (…)

Now, me, I like my knees. I like walking. I like not experiencing pain when i walk. You do what you want with your knees. But with these knees, I’d rather save my knees and all of my other body parts because it just doesn’t make sense to squat below parallel every time you squat. (…) Records are set on the platform, not in training.

Sure, a lot of people might come back and show a study that says squatting keep isn’t bad for your knees. But there aren’t that many studies on 400-pound world record holders, and it’s safe to say that Williams knows his body better than we do.

Let’s let the man squat.

Featured image via @ optimusprime_334 on Instagram.


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Nick is a content producer and journalist with over seven years’ experience reporting on four continents. His first articles about health were on a cholera outbreak in rural Kenya while he was reporting for a French humanitarian organization. His next writing job was covering the nightlife scene in Shanghai. He’s written on a lot of different kinds of things, but his passion for health ultimately led him to cover it full time.Shanghai was where he managed to publish his first health related article (it was on managing diarrhea), he then went on to produce a radio documentary about bodybuilding in Australia before he finished his Master’s degrees in Journalism and International Relations and headed to New York City. Here, he’s been writing on health full time for more than five years for outlets like Men's Health, VICE, and Popular Science.Nick’s interest in health kind of comes from an existential angle: how are we meant to live? How do we reach our potential? Does the body influence the mind? (Believe it or not, his politics Master’s focused on religion.)Questions like these took him through a lot of different areas of health and fitness like gymnastics, vegetarianism, kettlebell training, fasting, CrossFit, Paleo, and so on, until he realized (or decided) that strength training fit best with the ideas of continuous, measurable self improvement.At BarBend his writing focuses a little more on nutrition and long-form content with a heaping dose of strength training. His underlying belief is in the middle path: you don’t have to count every calorie and complete every workout in order to benefit from a healthy lifestyle and a stronger body. Plus, big traps are cool.