The 300-Pound Challenge

The 1990 IronMind® catalog included a two-inch handle for doing one-hand deadlifts - seemingly a lot of onesie-twosie, but the point of it was that a big number on a one-hand deadlift using a two-inch bar was a classic test of grip strength. And based on who had done what, we echoed David Willoughby's question, "Is there a man in the world today who can do a one-hand deadlift of 340 pounds on a 2-inch bar?"

What we soon learned was that having a non-rotating handle made all the difference, and to capture the essence of this feat of strength - i.e., to maintain its spirit as a test of grip strength - the handle needed to revolve, so in 1993 IronMind® developed and introduced the Rolling Thunder® to address this requirement.

In 2005 we wrote, "As the product evolved, we found out that some guys were defeating the purpose of the lift by cupping the handle in a cocked wrist, effectively eliminating the element of grip which was the lift's raison d'etre - this made as much sense to us as it would to use this tool with a lifting strap, but that's a different story." And that's why a thumbless grip is not permitted on this lift.

Because the Rolling Thunder® is 2-3/8 inches, we whittled down David Willoughby's target and reframed the question in terms of a 300-pound challenge: Nobody's ever hit the 300-pound mark on the Rolling Thunder®, at least not officially, so given the increased interest in grip strength over the years that IronMind® has been in the field, in 2004 we offered a $300 IronMind® gift certificate to the first person who did it in an official contest before the end of that year (December 31, 2004).

And now, with some big lifts looming on the horizon, here's something official (and accurate) to grab onto: IronMind® is extending this offer through the end of this year, so be the first person to pull this weight as specified before December 31, 2006 and you'll earn a $300 IronMind® gift certificate, not to mention some mighty major bragging rights in the world of grip strength.

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