On July 10, 2022, over Instagram, strongman Rauno Heinla shared footage of himself completing a 450-kilogram (992-pound) deadlift during a training session. Heinla’s staggering strength figure is roughly 30 pounds more than the current strongman Master’s World Record.
Heinla wore a deadlift suit, a lifting belt, and lifting straps to capture his massive pull.
Heinla turned 40 in early June 2022, so he now qualifies for the strongman Master’s 40+ division. Russia’s Mikhail Shivlyakov currently holds the official Master’s World Record thanks to a pull of 436 kilograms (962 pounds) from the 2020 World’s Ultimate Strongman (WUS) “Feats of Strength” series.
Heinla’s Deadlift Journey
It’s been an eventful past few months for Heinla around the strongman sphere. After a decade-plus-long absence (2011) according to Strongman Archives, the Estonian athlete was set to compete in the 2022 World’s Strongest Man (WSM). Unfortunately, after an undisclosed injury following a Silver Dollar deadlift attempt, Heinla eventually withdrew from his return to strongman’s most prestigious competition.
Approximately a month later, while apparently recovered from his injury, Heinla’s persistence paid off. In June 2022, he broke Sean Hayes’ previous Silver Dollar deadlift World Record with a pull of 579.7 kilograms (1,278 pounds). A couple of weeks later, Heinla smashed a 420-kilogram (926-pound) traditional deadlift for four reps in training.
The Silver Dollar World Record is merely another significant pulling feat for Heinla. He previously set the current all-time 400-kilogram (881.8-pound) deadlift for reps World Record with six at the 2020 WUS “Feats of Strength” series. The Estonian strongman is also one of the few people to have ever deadlifted at least 453.6 kilograms (1,000 pounds). Other noteworthy names in that exclusive club include former WSM Champions Eddie Hall (2017) and Hafthor Björnsson (2018), and powerlifter Krysztof Wierzbicki. Björnsson retired from strongman in August 2020.
By showing he can surpass the current Master’s World Record, Heinla only continues his familiar trend as one of the world’s premier deadlifters.
The Road Ahead
All these substantial recent deadlifts are part of Heinla’s preparation for the 2022 Giants Live World Open & World Deadlift Championships (WDC). The WDC is a segment of the Giants Live World Open. Heinla notched an eighth-place result at the 2021 WDC and is undoubtedly looking to improve upon that finish at this year’s edition. The 2022 WDC will occur on August 6, 2022, in Cardiff, Wales.
Here is the current roster of athletes Heinla will have to overcome in Wales, per the Giants Live organization website:
2022 World Deadlift Championships Roster
- Ivan Makarov (Russia) — 2021 WDC Champion
- Evan Singleton (United States)
- *Adam Bishop (United Kingdom)
- Oleksii Novikov (Ukraine)
- Mitchell Hooper (Canada)
- Gabriel Peña (Mexico)
- Rauno Heinla (Estonia)
- Gavin Bilton (United Kingdom)
- Asko Karu (Estonia)
- Pavlo Nakonechnyy (Ukraine)
- Peiman Maheripourehir (Iran)
- Wild card — Announced at a later date
*Note: Bishop suffered a triceps tear in early July 2022, and his status may be unclear for the contest.
Notably, Giants Live has issued a challenge to the athletes at the 2022 WDC. Should any of the competitors deadlift 505 kilograms (1,113 pounds) during the competition, Giants Live will reward them with a $55,000 cash prize. Björnsson possesses the current all-time World Record deadlift of 501 kilograms (1,104.5 pounds), which he achieved at the 2020 WUS “Feats of Strength” series.
Considering his resume, Heinla could be in a quality position to meet the lofty challenge from Giants Live. With the 2022 WDC less than a month away at the time of this writing, he could soon add another record to his career ledger.
Featured image: @rauno_heinla on Instagram