Pound for Pound Lifting: Who Is Stronger? (Wilks vs. Sinclair)

Who is stronger? Wilks or Sinclair?

The question of who is stronger between Wilks and Sinclair has been debated for years. Both men are strong, but they have different strengths. Let’s take a look at their respective strength levels.

Wilks Strength Level:

Wilks is one of the strongest lifters in history with an impressive total of 585 pounds. His best lifts include a raw bench press of 325 pounds, a raw squat of 495 pounds, and a deadlift of 675 pounds.

His training philosophy was based on the idea that you train your body to maximize its potential through progressive overload. That means you work up to heavier weights until they become too heavy for you to lift without breaking down. Then, gradually increase the weight so that eventually it becomes too easy for you to lift.

He believed that if you could get past a certain point, then you were ready to move on to something else. For example, he once lifted a barbell over his head and completed a single pullup. This feat would not have been possible had he trained with conventional weightlifting equipment such as plates and pins. Instead, he used a device called the “Wilks machine.”

Sinclair Strength Level:

Sinclair is one of the strongest pullers in history with a total of 725 pounds. His best lifts include a raw deadlift of 675 pounds, a belt and chain deadlift of 725 pounds, and a bench press of 265 pounds.

He became interested in strength training while serving in the army. At first, he lifted with standard equipment such as barbells and dumbbells. When he had built up a solid strength base, he started making his own equipment. He created a device called the “Trap Bar” which resembles a barbell with no ends.

It allows you to lift more weight than a regular barbell while keeping your hands shoulder-width apart.

Sinclair also created the “Captains of Crush” line of hand-grips. These grippers are used by strongmen and athletes around the world to build up their crushing strength.

Who Is Stronger?

Both lifters have impressive strength levels. Wilks is stronger in terms of maximum lifts. He can bench press more than twice what Sinclair can and far more than that if you count bodyweight.

However, it’s important to remember that Wilks has been competing in powerlifting for about twenty years now. His numbers are going to be higher simply because he’s had more time to train.

Pound for Pound Lifting: Who Is Stronger? (Wilks vs. Sinclair) - at GYMFITWORKOUT

That being said, it’s hard to judge who is really stronger since they’re using different equipment and have built their strength in different ways. For this reason, it’s best to not debate who is stronger and instead appreciate the impressive strength of both men.

Sources & references used in this article:

Relative Strength is Relatively Confusing by Mark Langley by L Jump, P Vault, T Jump, S Put, MY Blog, CV Blog… – elitetrack.com

The effect of cut-off frequency when high-pass filtering equine sEMG signals during locomotion by LS George, SJ Hobbs, J Richards, J Sinclair… – Journal of …, 2018 – Elsevier

Fruit fly, Fireblight and powdery scab: Australia‐New Zealand trade relations, 1919–39 by K Sinclair – The Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History, 1972 – Taylor & Francis

Maximizing Muscle Hypertrophy: A Systematic Review of Advanced Resistance Training Techniques and Methods by M Krzysztofik, M Wilk, G Wojdała, A Gołaś – International Journal of …, 2019 – mdpi.com

Strength and speed/power athletes by DH Fukuda, JR Hoffman, JR Stout – Body Composition Health …, 2017 – books.google.com


Global Fast Food or Local Slow Cuisine: Are these the Only Options on the Menu? by R Wilk – Transnational Seminar Series, 2005 – ideals.illinois.edu

System for evaluating powerlifting and other multievent performances by PA Bishop, TD Williams, AN Heldman… – The Journal of …, 2018 – journals.lww.com

The Peer, the Plantsman, and the Picture-Maker: The English Embassy to the Court of Christian IV of Denmark, 1603 by T Wilks – The Court Historian, 2007 – Taylor & Francis