The Dritvík Stones are a set of famous stones in Iceland. Each stone is heavier than the next. Icelandic Fisherman would use these stones to test the strength of an aspiring crew member. The only way you would be able to be a member of the crew was if you could lift the heavyest of the stones weighing 153 kgs or just under 340 pounds. Lifting heavy is not just a sport in Iceland, it’s a way of life.
Icelandic national icon Jón Páll Sigmarsson once said, as he was breaking the deadlift world record, “there is no reason to live if you can’t deadlift.” Over thirty years later, it is fitting that the man who would set the new world record for the deadlift, Iceland native Hafthor Bjornsson, would have this quote tattooed on his leg.
Who is Hafthor Bjornsson?
While he is best known for his role as The Mountain in Game of Thrones, 6 foot 9 inch Bjornsson has cemented himself in history as one of the strongest men in the World. In 2018 he won the title of World’s Strongest Man. His career as a strong man began unexpectedly when he suffered a foot injury while playing on Iceland’s U17 basketball team. Unable to play basketball, he turned to weightlifting. In his first strong man completion, he broke an Icelandic record and never looked back.
The Deadlift World Record
On May 2, 2020, Hafthor Bjornsson broke the record for a one-rep deadlift with a 501 kg or 1,104 lb lift. The record was streamed on ESPN and watched by people all over the world. Click below to watch the stream. After the lift, Bjornsson was ecstatic. He told reporters,
“It’s great – there’s nothing better than proving people wrong. So many people didn’t believe in me. So many people that said, ‘501kg is never going to go up’… but I also had a lot of support. But I’m excited, super excited- this is huge for me” he added
Feats like these show that there is no limit to what we can accomplish, In any sport, a record sets the bar for athletes showing them what is now possible . It will only be a matter of time before someone else sets a new world record. After all, records are made to be broken.
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