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DLs: Strength and Plate Sizes

Hey guys and gals, I am wondering how much one could lift more, when the plate sizes (and therefore the leverage of the bar) increases. I’m in one of those commercial gyms where they use those fashion rubber plates instead of regular olympic plates. The biggest plates (20kg or 44lbs) look like the sizes of regular 35lbs plates.

I used my water bottle today to measure the diameter of those plates and they seem to have a radius of about 6.3inches or 16cm. I am just curious, how much more I could deadlift with regular plates. (looking to compete somewhen in the near future, but still have to stick to the crappy gym till october)


I’ve seen about a 30lb difference when people train with the 35’s instead of 45’s.

This wasn’t mine, but someone who I workout with, so I can’t say for sure if that’s on the high side or not.

It varies a lot depending on how you pull (sumo the height difference has a stronger effect) and where you are weak (bottom or top). I would say 2-5% at that height for most people, but for you just put something (some rubber or stretching mats) under the weights to find out. A real deadlift is 8" off the ground so you need to raise it up about 1.5 inches or so. Then you will know how much it affects you personally, might be nothing, might be a fair amount.

I got problems pulling from the floor. I got a hard time to activate my quads when I’m pulling. Seems like I raise my butt to fast. Oh, and I am pulling conventional style. I don’t think the German Powerlifting federation is that big, that they allow to pull sumo style. Thanks for the replies. I appreciate that.


I have a friend who started powerlifting a few months ago and as im doing a personal training course I started training him for experience, his 1rm when he started deadlifting was 262lb (120kg) with reg 44lb plates, I got him doing platform deads instead which was around the difference between a 44lb (20kg) and 33lb (15kg) plate. He redid his max last week, his platform dead was 297lb (135kg), we waited 6 hours and redid his conventional and his 1rm was 330lb (150kg), so it was a 33lb (15kg) carry over.

Which goes with what people said above.