Strongman Martins Licis Steinborn Squats an Incredible 565 lb World Record

Strongman Martins Licis looks like he was born to perform Steinborn Squats.

The Steinborn Squat is a lift that is rooted in old-timely strength training goodness. While unconventional in nature, the Steinborn Squat grown in popularity over the last couple years due to the boom of social media and strongman competitors performing the movement on large stages.

Over the weekend, Rogue Fitness hosted the ROGUE Invitational which served as one of the many CrossFit Sanctionals for the 2019 CrossFit Games season. The Sanctional was held at the Rogue Fitness Headquarters in Columbus, Ohio, and and on top of the competition itself, Rogue Fitness also featured a couple Rogue Record Breakers events for the crowd — one being the Steinborn Squat.

Before this weekend, the Steinborn Squat world record was set at 254kg/560 lbs by Martins Licis at the 2018 Arnold Sports Festival.

However, that world record didn’t last long, as Licis has pushed his world record a bit further by Steinborn Squatting a massive 257kg/565 lbs. What makes the feat even better is that Licis repped out four squats between the rockover and put back portions of the lift — insane. Check out the video below.

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NEW WORLD RECORD – 565lb (257kg)! – I originally started to use the Steinborn Rockover squat as a physical therapy exercise to rehabilitate my spine. It worked so well for me that now I’m setting World Records with it. (Please do not take that seriously. Do not use this to rehabilitate anything). HUGE THANK YOU to @drjantodd @steve_slater_ @caityhenniger @billhenniger for making this possible! Always a HUGE pleasure working alongside @roguefitness , and leading the way in Strength! Huge thank you to @lindseybowenn and @romarkweiss for supporting and videoing as always! Huge thank you to @sbd.usa @sbdapparel for supporting my joints! Huge thank you to @probodycoach for your nutritional guidance! And huge thank you to so many others for your support and belief in me. @thetraininghall @oddhaugen @dotfit #sbdusa #SBDapparel #Strongman #Steinborn #Squat #Legs @rogueinvitational #Crossfit @crossfit #WorldRecord #BeALegend #MARTINS

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In Licis Instagram video’s description he writes, “NEW WORLD RECORD – 565lb (257kg)! – I originally started to use the Steinborn Rockover squat as a physical therapy exercise to rehabilitate my spine.

It worked so well for me that now I’m setting World Records with it. (Please do not take that seriously. Do not use this to rehabilitate anything). HUGE THANK YOU to @drjantodd, @steve_slater_, @caityhenniger, and @billhenniger for making this possible!”

History of the Steinborn Squat

The Steinborn Squat gets its name after strength pioneer Milo Steinborn. In the late 1800s, Steinborn was known for performing incredible strength feats like a 553 lb squat, 218 lb one-armed snatch, 255 lb one-armed jerk, and 375 lb clean & jerk. He’s often deemed as one of the most influential strength pioneers of modern day training.

So how did the Steinborn Squat come about? One of Steinborn’s most esteemed career accolades was a 553 lb squat. Now, in modern day, a 553 lb squat is routine for many lifters, however, remember at the time there were no squat racks and Steinborn had to pick the weight up and rock on to his back — thus, creating the birth of the Steinborn Squat.

How to Steinborn Squat

In Licis’ Instagram video’s description, he jokes about using this movement for rehab. And like Licis, we wouldn’t recommend doing that, however, this can be a great movement to not only test your mobility, but strength and proprioception under the barbell.

As with most movements, we’d recommend starting light and dialing in proper form before trying to perform Steinborn Squats heavy.

1.
Grab the Bar

Start by standing perpendicular to the end of the barbell, and squat down, grabbing one end.

Set your back like a deadlift, and stand up.

2.
Lift One End Up

Continue to walk the barbell up so that it becomes vertical to the ground

Use your legs and lift up like a deadlift

Coach’s Tip: Be careful not to let teh bar roll on the ground.

3.
Set Your Grip

This is one of the most difficult steps, as set up is key for balance and safety of the load.

Take your bottom hand and grab in the same spot at which you would take in a back squat. Squat down and get yourself fitted to the barbell, which often means your lead foot is close the the weight plates on the ground.

Coach’s Tip: Use your core to resist excessive spinal lateral flexion and/or movement of the bar.

4.
Pull Yourself (and the Barbell) Down

With the feet and hands secured, pull the barbell down into the body and begin to sit into a deep squat.

The bar will move and/or slide if you do not properly position yourself during step 3. Additionally, be sure to be fluid as you drop into a deep squat.

Coach’s Tip: This step happens quickly, so just be ready to take the load.

5.
Sit into a Deep Squat

Sit deep into a strong, low, and stable squat.

Be sure to keep you chest up and core tight, and prepare yourself to stand up.

Coach’s Tip: Be sure you are able to sit in a deep squat prior to training the Steinborn squat.

6.
Stand Up

Once you have stabilized the load on the bar, simply stand up to the top of the squat position.

You can then dump the barbell off the back, walk it into the rack, or reverse steps 1-6 (like you would in a Turkish get up) and load the load back to the floor, repeating on the other side.

Feature image from @martinslicis 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 1,300 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.

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