T Nation

World's Strongest Man General Discussion

Mmmm I would say a majority of the timed speed events favor the short dudes. I would be okay with more events like this if they would cut those events out. I want to see pure strength not speed.

Why do you think that timed speed events favor short dudes? I don’t really see a logical biomechanical reason that should be the case, nor does data seem to to support that conclusion.

I suppose that you have to break down timed speed events into categories.

Harness truck pulls tend to favor tall guys simply because it is easier for tall guys to be heavier (and still be athletic) and harness truck pulls favor heavy guys.

Loading medleys seem to not go either way, but since the platform height at the end is fixed, it is slightly favorable to heavy guys. Since the actual load is not usually the difference, this is not really that important.

Carries such as frames, farmers, and yokes don’t seem to really favor a specific body type, as far as I can tell. Same with tire flips, drags, duck walks, etc.

If by timed speed events, you are more talking about overhead medleys, deadlift ladders, or just reps for time, I think short guys are favored slightly due to less range of motion. However, this really only comes into play with relatively light events where it really becomes an issue of how many reps you can physically get through in the time limit. As long as the events are heavy enough that competitors reach failure or at least have to slow down to get through it, I don’t think that overall range of motion is a big deal.

I think the above applies to pro level shows like WSM. At amateur shows where a deadlift for reps might be relatively lighter and the winning total is 20+ in 60 seconds, I would agree that less range of motion can make the difference. Amateur shows have pressure to make the weights light enough that competitors don’t get scared off by a fear of zeroing events. I don’t think WSM, the Arnold, etc. have similar considerations.

I just imagine a Novikov being able to move a little easier in a loading medley and even farmers then say a Shaw or a Thor. Platform height at the end definitely favors taller dudes. I think all in all its about even. Really, it seems there is barely any coherent thought put into some of the events at all. Or booze is involved when coming up with some of these events.

That kind of makes sense, but Shaw and Thor were actually quite competitive in farmers and such in their prime. High level strongman seems to be somewhat of a balancing act to see how big you can get while still being reasonably fast and mobile. Novikov might be faster than a prime Thor or Shaw, but that’s because he’s 280lbs vs 450lbs. Not because he’s 7-8 inches shorter.

I think there is an argument to be made that lighter guys might have an advantage in certain types of moving events, but I think height actually works in the opposite direction in that regard. A guy who is 6’8" and 420lbs is generally going to be faster and more nimble than a guy who is 6’0" and 420lbs. Look at Eddie Hall. He is shorter and pushed his weight up really high but his speed suffered much more than taller guys at the same weight.

1 Like

This is probably true. But I don’t think there were many 6’ tall competitors pushing 400 lbs though. Eddie was what 350 maybe (probably more like 330) when he was competing. Shaw was 440 or so. There was only 5" differences between the 2. Thor was around 450 at 6’9". Licis was 330 last year.

Eddie and Big Z were upper 300s (like 390-400), and I think both 6’2"-6’3".

I do see Eddie’s weight was allegedly 410 in 2017. Licis last year was 355 at 6’3". Novikov is 6’1" and 298.

1 Like

If I’m not mistaken, Eddie was as heavy as 430 at one point

I could believe that. I just know he wasn’t 330-350 as was stated.

Correct, although he is like 350-360 now that he is a boxer :laughing: