Is There A Standard Squat/Bench/Deadlift Ratio?

Create: 10/10/2006 - 07:17
A WannaBeBig poster wonders if there's an ideal ration between the amount of one's squat, bench, and deadlift which he should be shooting for. He asks:

I hear people talking frequently about "bad" ratios for squat/bench/dead, but I've never read a formula. I'm sure the right ratio varies person by person, but is there a guideline out there?


It differs for everyone. Most of the bench specialists have a sick bench, and dont' really care to discuss their squat and deadlift numbers. The most common top powerlifters have a big squat, followed by a deadlift which is less than their squat, followed by a bench lower than their deadlift. A plain example would be: 1000/600/800--> that's a normal ratio for a world class powerlifter. If you have say a 700 bench and a 600 deadlift, then you're most probably destined to be a bench specialist.

I've never heard of someone that can bench more than they can DL.

The 1000/600/800 ratio applies to PL'ers who use equipment, but it's not as applicable to raw ratios. Raw, most people will have a higher deadlift than squat, and a higher squat than bench. I know a lot of raw guys shoot for a ratio of about 400/300/500 on squat/bench/dead.

A very general, useful guide for an unequipped lifter: Squat 2 x bw bench 1.5 x bw dead 2.5 x bw That works out to a 4:3:5 ratio Once you reach elite levels or throw equipement into the mix, it changes/

A very, very informal study on the internet showed that most lighter lifters have a higher deadlift to squat, whereas heavier lifters have a higher squat. I think the turning point is around 231. Obviously this doesn't apply to everyone, and gear changes things as well... I agree with Guido, I think a ratio of about 4:3:5 is pretty standard for someone under 220, raw.

yep with raw training its 3,4,5 bench squat dead, which is like exactly what i have cept higher squat

In my opinion, the squat should be higher than the deadlift, and the deadlift should be higher than the bench, something like 1000, 600, 800, but a lot of people don't do this.

Either way, I think it's safe to say that 99.99999999999% of lifters will always have a higher deadlift than squat unless they use equipment.

Depends on genetics... Really depends i wouldn't put a ideal number to it though.

those are accurate pl ratios for a parallel squat. atf squat however dramatically reduces the squat number like anthony said, regardless of body type, deadlift will always be higher than a full range squat.


Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
whats up with the above comments saying 99.9 percent of people will have a higher deadlift than squat or deadlift will always be higher than squat raw.... i dont think that is true or maybe im just in the .1 percent range...or my deadlift is just not up to

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
My squat and deadlift are about the same raw, always has been. And truth be told, it's a little embarrasing but my raw bench isn't too far behind.

Submitted by Brain (not verified) on
It is important firstly to think about the weight of the lifter. Light lifters do take very much in dead lift, many of them equalize the squat result (with their DL). As the lifters got heavyer they take more and more in squat and bench, but the dead lift results are not improving that much, and rarely you see lifts over 380-400 kg. Suddenly many lifters in weight classes over 90-100 kg begin to take more in bench than in dead lift! This mentioned phenomen is completely unthinkable in the lighter weight classes.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Some of the opinions above just plain come from beginners, that is easy to see. Opinion number two, you surely haven't seen much Powerlifting. Opinion number 4 and 5 is just plain stupid. Number 6 is just tagging along so he can brag on is on littler nubers. Number two is the best answer on there and is in sink with most lifters, numbers my very from lifter to lifter.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
Squat 2 x bw bench 1.5 x bw dead 2.5 x bw That's what I'm working towards. At 80kgs bodyweight it means squatting 160, a bench of 120, a deadlift of 200. Currently my bench is stalled at 92.5, the squat's at 142 (atg) and the dl (which I train better than the others as i just enjoy it) is 197.5. I'm 45 and view training as more marathon than sprint so it's taken me 8 years since I returned to lifting to get here. The ratio above though is something I remember as good aim points from when I used to lift as a much younger bloke. Twenty odd years back I made and broke those targets but now I'll be happy with getting there :). I've no idea on suits as never used them - I don't use a belt either aside from 1RM attempts and the work up to one. In summary though I would always expect to deadlift more than I squat and to squat more than I bench. I feely admit btw that I am a saddo when to comes to the bench so this may colour my opinion a little Smile