T Nation

First Contest - Advice


Hey all, I'm thinking about doing a strongman contest next month. The events are:

2 inch Axle Overhead Pressâ?? One Clean, press for reps (60 sec)
Women: 120#

Farmers Walk 40 feet (60 Sec)
Women: 140# (per hand)

Deadlift - 2 inch Axle with tires (approx 18â?? off ground) (60 Sec)
Women: 250#

Yoke Walk 40 feet (60 Sec)
Women: 350#

Atlas Stones (5 Stones, 48â?? Platform, 60 Sec)
Women: 115, 135, 155, 175, 200

What can you tell me about these? What are the rules? Are you allowed to push press for the overhead press? How low do you have to bring it down? Is sumo stance permitted with the deadlift? Any training suggestions, knowing that I'm generally at a commercial gym?

Thoughts and advice appreciated!



Rules can vary from meet to meet, but generally push press is allowed as is sumo DL. As for depth on the press, you will most likely be required to do a full press each time, so all the way down to the shoulders.



Any method of getting the axle overhead will be allowed. The tricky part will be the clean. It is very different with an axle. Depending on your strength with cleans and grip, you may need to go to a continental clean - that should be practiced at least once prior.

The rules vary at every show, but I have never seen sumo allowed on any dl event - always been conventional only.

Stones are tricky the first time you try them. You won't have any issue with strength level (based on your PL numbers) but it would be a good idea to get a practice in with stones if possible.

Schedule permitting it would be helpful to get a practice session in. Contact the promoter, he/she may have a practice scheduled before the show or know of a local group. If not, try the board on nastrongman.com or marunde-muscle.com/forum and ask about local groups or equipment.

Do the show even if you can't get a practice in. Everyone there will be helpful and you should be able to get some quick practice in beforehand or after the rules meeting. You PL experience will make the transition easier and you'll have a blast.


Not if you're doing a NAS show. I've never heard of a promoter allowing it. I suppose technically it's probably at the promoter's discretion, but I'd be shocked if they allowed it.

On the press, the bar probably has to come to below the chin.

Advice on axle deadlift - rack pulls w tyler grips, fat gripz or 4orce grips or something

axle overhead - do a youtube search for a continental clean and learn it, train your push press or push jerk

farmers - walk w DBs, plate pinch and walk - anything where youre training grip and walking. It's surprising the effect that doing something else (walking) at the same time will affect grip. Also, double overhand deadlifts. Obviously not walking, but that will build your grip.

yoke - some SL stuff might help, to an extent, but by and large, you need to try out a yoke

stones - no substitute. Gotta play w the stones to learn em

post videos


Thanks for the info and advice, all. I'll post videos if I end up doing the meet and am not too horribly embarrassed. :wink:


Push You should do it for sure, just to gain experience. Strongman is one of the few sports that it is standard to encourage the competition. Don't use any stimulants that day, you will be geeked enough. Keep your head in it and you will probably do better than you think. Have a good one.


i did one strongman meet and it was a blast! i had so much fun!

however for some reason as a woman, they didn't let me log press-- but i had to use a bb with a big pvc pipe fitted around it to do it. they weren't expecting any female competitors so they sorta made up stuff for me to do.

everyone was so much fun! total party atmosphere! the day was way chill like a bbq. they even had a grill to cook burgers and stuff during half time.

the stones are hard to figure out. i'd never done it before that day, and it took practically all of my alloted time to finally figure out what the f*ck i was doing. everyone has sticky tape to help grip the stone to their bodies too which seemed to help, but then again the guys did it all topless so they smeared it all over their arm and chests.

RMLC has those stones, farmers walk things, and log press type devices to try. its hard to clean those but i'm sure you can do it! go for it and have fun!


I was thinking of stopping by the RMLC this weekend, or one of the strongman gyms in the area, to play with stones. You planning to go to RMLC? We can play with your legs.

I'm able to clean 120 pretty easily, but have also been practicing the continental clean type move, in case the axle messes with me. I am definitely going to wear a bra that mashes the girls down - it's hard to get the bar up and over them if I get stuck at the bottom of the sternum, lol.

Engineering grippy work farmer walk fun...


Where is this RMLC?

Denver area?

I'm in Greeley and am looking at doing my 1st strongman competition in Ft Collins in May. I would love to find a place where I could experiment with some of thsi shit


RMLC is a PLing gym in Aurora, they also have Oly and Strongman equipment. There is also Armbrust and Colorado Pro Gym, for strongman stuff out here, but I don't know much about them. There is a TN member who trains at Colorado Pro.


hrmmm, i will have to check that out for sure. Thanks. I'm new to the whole area.


:smiley: ! ha! nah...i'm still kinda too gimpy for anything fun at rmlc. if you do go ask them how much those freaking stones weight.. i've been wondering about them.

you're rigged up equipment is great! what made you decide to try strongman stuff?


When I decided USAPL Nats probably wasn't going to work, and "Liked" Colorado Strongman Association at about the same time on FB. I've thought about it for a while, but a lot of the contests don't have the female division (as you mentioned). This one does.



Show report.


ah so you were there

I should of said hi. We were both total noobs


Wow sounds like you had a awesome time, hope your hooked, sounds like you are in the running for hardware next time. there are going to be a lot of competitions throughout the summer