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  • Squat-Deads-Bench Ratio

    For all of you powerlifters out there. If your goal was to be a well rounded powerlifter and not just excel in 1 lift, is there an ideal ratio among the 3 lifts?

    Example: Squat 2xs your bench press, deadlift 1.5xs your benchpress? Obviously everyone has their strengths and weaknesses but in a perfect world?

  • #2
    It's tough, as I don't think the ratios are linear.
    500, 600, 400 seems pretty good and balanced to me, but so does 600,800,500. Of course, this is my ignorant, non-powelifting opinion, so take that with a grain of salt.
    2010 NPC North Star

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    • #3
      Macho's ignorant opinion is not that far off for me personally (don't get me wrong, he is ignorant, and pretty damn ugly as well), but it is difficult to say it would be nice and linear for everyone. I have seen some great squatters with crappy pull numbers and vice versa. Powerlifting, from what I have seen in my short time in it is all about structure and body levers (along with technique of course). Most 6' 5" guys are not built genetically (leverage wise) for squatting (I know there are exceptions, but you get my point). I think bench is the one lift affected most by your body weight, and I have heard that from others in the sport... "want a bigger bench, eat your way there, or go up a weight class!"
      "It is impossible to defeat an ignorant man in argument." -William G. McAdoo

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      • #4
        Well let's look at some data shall we?

        Now I don't have a ton of data points because I just did this quickly - I recorded the best squat, bench press, and deadlift for the top male lifter in each raw weight class from this year's AAPF, SPF, and APA Nationals. This provides me with data for 21 lifters.

        If we use the bench press as the normalizer then the average ratio across lifters was 1.5/1/1.6. That is a squat that is 1.5 times the bench press, and a deadlift that is 1.6 times the bench press. This of course varies by weight class with lighter lifters having a higher ratio while heavier lifters have a lower ratio. It seems that the bench press continues to climb as weight classes go up while the squat and deadlift do not continue to increase at the same rate.

        We can also look at the strength performance standards that are listed here:
        http://www.exrx.net/Testing/WeightLi...hStandards.htm

        Here are the elite ratios (S/B/D) by weight based on those tables:

        114 - 1.5/1/1.8
        123 - 1.4/1/1.7
        132 - 1.4/1/1.7
        148 - 1.4/1/1.7
        165 - 1.4/1/1.6
        181 - 1.4/1/1.6
        198 - 1.4/1/1.6
        220 - 1.4/1/1.5
        242 - 1.4/1/1.5
        275 - 1.4/1/1.5
        319 - 1.4/1/1.5
        320+ - 1.4/1/1.4


        I'm not powerlifting currently but my ratio is 1.4/1/1.6 which is consistent with the above.


        2017 NPC National Championships Classic Physique, Class D - 4th Place
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        • #5
          Thanks, Moco. Very interesting! My current ratio is about 1.3/1/1.6 (and I am nursing a hip injury), so it is very close to the 1.4/1/1.6 @198 class. Thanks for the info.
          "It is impossible to defeat an ignorant man in argument." -William G. McAdoo

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          • #6
            Good stuff Moco! I am above the advanced but far from the elite for the 220 pounders. Current ratio of 1.3/1/1.5. I've finally found my groove on squats again and hope to see some big gains start to happen.

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            • #7
              Also remember that ratios will be skewed depending on whether you're looking at with or without knee wraps. And if you start looking at equipped (either single- or multi-ply), you might as well just quit.
              Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
              kind of a douche

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              • #8
                According to Moco's chart I'm right there as a 165 lb'er.

                1.5/1/1.7 But, my bench sucks.
                2014 USPA Nevada State / Regional Championships - 1,168 total

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                • #9
                  Hmmm....interesting chart.

                  1.4/1/1.57 for me
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                  • #10
                    finally tested and did my math...

                    1.5/1/1.7
                    good stuff to know I am "normal"
                    "This is your life. It is the only one you get. So no excuses, and no do-overs. If you make a mistake or fail at something you learn from it, you get over it and you move on. Your job is to be the very best person you can be and to never settle for anything less."
                    ~ Ann Richards, former TX governor

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by moco View Post
                      Well let's look at some data shall we?

                      Now I don't have a ton of data points because I just did this quickly - I recorded the best squat, bench press, and deadlift for the top male lifter in each raw weight class from this year's AAPF, SPF, and APA Nationals. This provides me with data for 21 lifters.

                      If we use the bench press as the normalizer then the average ratio across lifters was 1.5/1/1.6. That is a squat that is 1.5 times the bench press, and a deadlift that is 1.6 times the bench press. This of course varies by weight class with lighter lifters having a higher ratio while heavier lifters have a lower ratio. It seems that the bench press continues to climb as weight classes go up while the squat and deadlift do not continue to increase at the same rate.

                      We can also look at the strength performance standards that are listed here:
                      http://www.exrx.net/Testing/WeightLi...hStandards.htm

                      Here are the elite ratios (S/B/D) by weight based on those tables:

                      114 - 1.5/1/1.8
                      123 - 1.4/1/1.7
                      132 - 1.4/1/1.7
                      148 - 1.4/1/1.7
                      165 - 1.4/1/1.6
                      181 - 1.4/1/1.6
                      198 - 1.4/1/1.6
                      220 - 1.4/1/1.5
                      242 - 1.4/1/1.5
                      275 - 1.4/1/1.5
                      319 - 1.4/1/1.5
                      320+ - 1.4/1/1.4


                      I'm not powerlifting currently but my ratio is 1.4/1/1.6 which is consistent with the above.
                      I'm 1.7/1/1.7 for the 198 weight class. But my bench isn't great if you compare it to others in my weight class

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                      • #12
                        I am new to lifting. I've been told I'm a has been before I've even started because I'm 35. Can I have some guidance as to what to read first please

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by jaydenwilson View Post
                          I am new to lifting. I've been told I'm a has been before I've even started because I'm 35. Can I have some guidance as to what to read first please
                          Read this before anything else:

                          Completely disregard shitty opinions from other people.

                          Skip


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                          • #14
                            ^Yeah, that. Get rid of those people, STAT.

                            IBtroll
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                            • #15
                              I'm just getting started, but according to the book I'm reading you can always expect your Deadlift to be your strongest, squat next, bench press next, and overhead press last. If your order is different, you're over/undertraining something.

                              Now those are someone elses words, not mine. But it sounds logical to me, so I'm going to approach my training with that in mind.

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