How strong is strong?

When it comes to strength training, how do you know when you are strong?

I think that too many people get caught up with how much weight is on the bar and don’t consider strength to weight ratio as a tracker of strength gains. Sure, a 100kg squat would be considered a reasonable mark of strength (not power lifter strong, but for general trainees it is a good marker) but what if the squatter was a 110kg guy? Still strong? In my opinion, not so much. How about if it was a 60kg squatter? I’d take a near 1.7x bw (body weight) squat over a 0.9 x bw one any day!

There are a great number of thoughts on this topic, so I thought I would offer my own insights based on my own clients abilities and my thoughts on the general population and the aims I have for the people I work with.

It should be noted that I am assuming a “normal” healthy individual, with no major issues with injury, rehab or other limitations!

Deadlift:  

Men – Beginner – 0.5 – 1 x BW                Women – Beginner – 0.5 – 1x BW

Intermediate – 1  – 1.5 xBW                            Intermediate – 1-1.25x BW

Advanced – 1.5 – 2 x BW                                  Advanced – 1.25 – 1.75 x BW

 

Back squat (to parallel):

Men – Beginner – 0.5 – 1 x BW                Women – Beginner – 0.5 – 1x BW

Intermediate – 1  – 1.5 xBW                             Intermediate – 1-1.25x BW

Advanced – 1.5 – 1.75 x BW                             Advanced – 1.25 – 1.5 x BW

 

Front squat (to parallel):

Men – Beginner – 0.5 – 1 x BW                Women – Beginner – 0.25 – 0.5x BW

Intermediate – 1  – 1.35 xBW                           Intermediate – 0.5-1x BW

Advanced – 1.35 – 1.75 x BW                           Advanced – 1- 1.25 x BW

 

Bench press:

Men – Beginner – 0.5 – 0.75 x BW                 Women – Beginner – 0.25 – 0.5x BW

Intermediate – 0.75 – 1 xBW                                  Intermediate – 0.5 – 0.75 x BW

Advanced – 1 – 1.25 x BW                                        Advanced – 0.75 – 1 x BW

 

Hip thrust:

Men – Beginner – 0.5 – 1 x BW                Women – Beginner – 0.5 – 1x BW

Intermediate – 1  – 1.5 xBW                              Intermediate – 1-1.25x BW

Advanced – 1.5 – 2 x BW                                    Advanced – 1.25 – 1.75 x BW

 

Pull ups/ chin ups:

Men – Beginner – 0.5 – 1 x BW                Women – Beginner – 0.5 – 1x BW

Intermediate – BW x5                                      Intermediate – BW x 3

Advanced – BW x10 +                                      Advanced –  BW x8+

I’ve picked these exercises to give a good range of full body strength measures.

So, where do you fit in on these? What needs more work?

 

If you have any thoughts on these numbers I would love to hear them, leave a comment below!

 

Stay strong

 

Dave

 

 

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