Jim Schmitz on the Lifts

IronMind Block: Rules & World Records

No rafters handy for pinch-grip chins and maybe not even some smooth-sided plates for pinch gripping?

No problem—here's a way to build and test your pinch grip. It's perfect for maximum lifts and holds—for variety, try strolling with it—and even lateral raises.

The harder you squeeze, the stronger you'll get.


The IronMind Block and 15" Olympic loading pin and carabiner are available from the IronMind store, which has a complete selection of grip strength and hand health tools.
Please contact sales@ironmind.com if you have any questions.

IronMind Block Men's World Record*

 Name Date Weight
Harri Tolonen September 10, 2017 48.6 kg (107.14 lb.)
Harri Tolonen September 10, 2017 47.6 kg  (104.94 lb.)
Thomas Larsen January 7, 2017 46.6 kg (102.73 lb.)
Jacob Sahlaney¹ April 9, 2016 45.4 kg (100.24 lb.)
Thomas Larsen January 16, 2016 39.3 kg (86.64 lb.)
Kody Burns February 15, 2015 36.2 kg (79.8 lb.)

 *The minimum increment for breaking a world record is 1 kg, effective January 1, 2015
Jacob Sahlaney broke the world record on each of his first three attempts [88.87 lb. (40.31 kg), 92.68 lb. (42.03 kg), 95.11 lb. (43.14 kg)], and again on his fourth attempt [100.24 lb. (45.4 kg)].  

IronMind Block Women's World Record

Name Date Weight
Rebecca Roberts May 13, 2017 31.55 kg (69.4 lb)
Elizabeth Horne September 11, 2016 27.9 kg (61.5 lb.)


IronMind Block Contest Rules

1)  The IronMind Block must be an authentic current-model IronMind Enterprises, Inc. Block; it cannot have been modified or tampered with in any way.

2)  Ordinary chalk (magnesium carbonate) may be used on the lifting hand, but nothing else is permitted (tacky, for example, is specifically disallowed).

3)  Weight is hung from the Block using an IronMind 15" Olympic loading pin and carabiner.

4)  The lifter grabs the Block in approximately its center and lifts with the Block remaining approximately parallel to the ground. A thumbless grip is not permitted..

5)  The lifter must stand up straight; once standing straight the lifter waits for a down signal from the referee before returning the weight to the ground.  Contact must be maintained by the lifter's hand and the Block until the weight is resting on the floor. The referee then indicates if the lift was accepted.

6)  In contest situations, the lifter is given 1 minute to complete the lift after his/her name is called; during that minute, there is no limit to how many times the lifter may try to complete the lift.

*The minimum increment for breaking a world record is 1 kg, effective January 1, 2015.

See also IronMind's grip contest rules for extra attempts.

For more information on Olympic-style weightlifting, weight training, lifter profiles, and competition reports, visit our Weightlifting Resource Pages.

Jim Schmitz’s gold-medal articles on weightlifting and weight training are regularly featured in MILO: A Journal for Serious Strength Athletes.

Take advantage of what Jim Schmitz, absolutely one of the best American coaches in the sport, can teach you in his
Olympic-style Weightlifting for the Beginner & Intermediate Weightlifters Manual and DVD.