How Rare is a 405 lbs Bench Press? (Revealed!)

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So, you want to know, “How Rare is a 405 lbs Bench Press?”

It’s probably not a feat that you’ve ever seen achieved in your gym.

In fact, I know I’ve definitely never witnessed it.

We’re all extremely impressed with ourselves when we hit 2 plates per side, and then 3 plates.

However, hitting that magical 4 plates each side seems like an impossible dream.

So, in this article I’d like to discuss exactly how rare a 405 lbs bench press is, as well as revealing a few statistics, while also showing how you can potentially achieve 405 for yourself.

How Rare is a 405 Bench Press?

A 405 lbs bench press is extremely rare in the traditional gym setting. In fact, it is estimated that no more than 1% of recreational gym-goers will ever bench 405 lbs. Furthermore, according to statistics, it is said that the odds of a man being able to perform a 405 lbs bench press is 1:10,000. Whereas, for a woman, the odds dramatically reduce. It is estimated that there is potentially only one woman on the planet capable of benching 405 lbs.

1. Weightlifting & Powerlifting Bench Press Standards

Setting Up a Barbell For the Bench Press

So, as you’ve probably gathered, benching 405 lbs is extremely rare.

In fact, there probably aren’t that many recreational gym-goers who will ever be capable of benching this amount.

In reality, how much you can bench comes down to a few factors.

The most obvious one of these will be how much you weigh.

A decent bench press for an intermediate lifter who has been training for a few years will typically be 1.5 times their body weight.

RELATED===>Why Can’t I Bench Press My Own Weight?

So, going by these figures, your average lifter will need to weigh at least 270 lbs.

And this is why 405 is so rare, as you won’t find many “average” lifters, who bench press regularly, and who weigh 270 lbs.

Now, if we look at the Men’s Weightlifting & Powerlifting Standards, what we find is quite revealing.

In the lowest weight class of 114.6 lbs, the record holder is Andrzej Stanaszek, who has bench pressed 396.8 lbs.

This equates to 3.46 times Andrzej’s body weight, which of course is unbelievably impressive.

However, the fact remains that Andrzej, a highly-trained and skilled powerlifter, still hasn’t hit a 405 lbs bench.

In fact, it’s the next weight class where we see the standard not only met, but exceeded.

Anton Kraft, in the 123.45 lbs weight class, has bench pressed 446.4lbs.

This is an extremely impressive 3.62 times Anton’s body weight.

And he has since benched 457lbs, as evidenced by the video below.

Anton Kraft 457 lbs Bench Press at 2009 Arnold Sports Festival

2. Is a 405 Bench Possible?

If we also look at the bench press standards over at StrengthLevel.

This is a community where users input their statistics for a wide variety of lifts.

So, this then gives us potential standards for the entire community.

However, this doesn’t differentiate between factors such as weight, age, lifting experience, etc.

That being said, you can find these details over at StrengthLevel.

Anyway, back to bench pressing.

According to Strength Level, the average bench press for the entire community of beginners was 103 lbs.

However, the average bench press for the entire community of elite lifters was 372 lbs.

It’s not until we investigate these stats further that we finally find people hitting a 405 lbs bench press.

It appears that advanced lifters weighing equal to or more than 280 lbs were able to bench 405 lbs and above.

The body weight drops to equal to or more than 220lbs among elite lifters.

StrengthLevel states that an advanced lifter is stronger than 80% of lifters, and has progressed in the gym for over 5 years.

RELATED===>How Much Should My Bench Press Increase Each Week?

An elite lifter is said to be stronger than 95% of people, and they have dedicated over 5 years to become competitive at strength sports (like Andrzej and Anton mentioned above).

When looking at the body weight ratios set out by StrengthLevel, it’s interesting to note that it’s not until someone’s an advanced lifter that they exceed the 1.5 times body weight for bench press.

In fact, as a beginner, the community averages 0.50 times their body weight for bench press standards.

An intermediate lifter is at 1.25, advanced lifters can bench 1.75 x bodyweight, whereas elite lifters are benching 2 x bodyweight.

So, once more, this should prove just how rare a 405 lbs bench press is.

Don’t get wrong, it is certainly possible for a recreational gym-goer to bench 405 lbs.

However, it’s going to take a lot of training, and potentially you’re going to have to weigh in the high 200 lbs.

3. How Do I Get My Bench to 405?

If you’re looking to bench 405 lbs then there’s a number of things you’ll need to do to help you achieve this.

The most obvious of these, for most of us, is to put on weight.

From the statistics mentioned above, it’s highly unlikely that a recreational lifter who weighs under 280 lbs is going to achieve a 405 lbs bench press.

That being said, weight gain is typically a requirement to build muscle, but this isn’t always the case for building strength.

RELATED===>Why Do You Need to Be in a Calorie Surplus to Build Muscle?

I guess this has been proven by Anton Kraft, who has a 446.4 lbs bench press in the 123.45 lbs weight class.

However, you must remember that Anton is a professional athlete, who has no doubt been training the bench press for many years.

Basically, if you’re looking to hit 405, while being of a more conservative weight, you had better be an elite athlete.

For the rest of us mere mortals, it’s going to take a lot of training and eating to achieve a 405 lbs bench press.

Realistically, you’ll want to specialize on the bench press, and hit the movement multiple times a week.

RELATED===>Can I Do Bench Press Twice a Week?

However, this isn’t about simply training your one-rep max and aiming for progressive overload on a weekly basis.

In fact, training the bench press with a lighter weight with perfect form will get you nearer to your goal.

In effect, in order to reach 405 you should be training bench press in the 300s, but looking to add reps and sets regularly.

It also makes sense to train in the 3-6 rep range, and only increase weight once you hit 6 reps.

You may well find that a mid-300 lbs bench press for 6 reps could quite easily equate to a one-rep max 405 lbs.

Furthermore, you should also be training various accessory movements at the same time.

So, exercises like dips, dumbbell bench press, inclines, and even pull ups and rows.

Basically, you’ll want to hit both upper-body pushing and pulling muscles from a variety of angles.

Finally, your nutrition, rest, and recovery play an extremely important role in you achieving a 405 lbs bench press.

So, even though you’ll probably be training more often, you must ensure that you’re adhering to the non-gym elements of your training.

How to Bench Press 405 lbs

Final Thoughts

So, I hope you understand that a 405 lbs bench press is extremely rare.

In fact, it probably isn’t in the grasp of most recreational gym-goers.

It is estimated that 1 in 10,000 people, or the top 1% of lifters, will achieve a 405 bench.

In the main, this comes down to how much you weigh and your overall training experience.

The reason that weight is so important is because not many people who weigh under 280 lbs will be able to bench 405 lbs.

That being said, this has been achieved by powerlifter, Anton Kraft, who only weighs around 123 lbs.

However, it’s important to remember that Anton is an elite athlete.

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14 thoughts on “How Rare is a 405 lbs Bench Press? (Revealed!)”

  1. What are the stats for a 300 pd bench. For example I am 51 years old , been working out for 4 and a half years. Max was 300 pds at a body weight of 225?

    • Hey Giulio,

      According to StrengthLevel standards (which I have linked to in the article) you are classed as an internediary lifter (less than 5 years working out).

      So, for a someone aged 50-55 as an intermediate lifter, you should be benching 193lbs.

      As an advanced lifter this should increase to 259lbs, whereas its 331lbs for an elite lifter aged 50-55.


      Then we also have to take your weight into consideration.

      So, a 225lb man, who is an intermediate lifter, should be able to bench 280lbs.

      An advaced lifter of the same weight should be benching 350lbs, whereas an elite level athlete of the same weight should be benching 425lbs.

      I would put you very near to the advanced level due to your training experience, but are still classed as intern=mediate until you’ve been training for 5 years (big things can happen in 6 months).

      So, based on your age and weight, I would say that you’re slightly ahead of where you should be.

      Well Done.


      • Also is not extremely rare to bench 405. ?? there were more then 10 guys ,were I lifted back in 1999-2011 that did 495, 5 plates on each side! Gym owned by Fred glass.

        • I agree about 10 years ago in Vegas I would bench closer to 500 on the hammer strength machine. I was about 245 lbs at the time and spent hours at the gym but there were plenty others at 24 hour fitness that would do the same.

      • I saw a 33 year old guy bench press 5 plates a side in vernon bc two weeks ago. I know this because I spotted him and he didn’t need any help lifting it at all. He was doing reps of 6 to 8 with 4 plates a side. Raw power man

  2. I dont understand why all of sudden ,its the bench press? Its has been around for decades! You here everyone say “what do you bench”? Then there was a comment somewhere that said its the most badass lift ever? LOL Its pathetic. Its a joke. Its actually the easiest and laziest exercise there is, My dad would call it the lazy mans exercise ?. What about squat,deadlift,and overhead logpress. I was just a average Joe lifter. I weighed 225 at 5″8. I benched 405 at a contest ,squated 495, and deadlifted 535. And I came in fourth place in 2009. Also logpressed 315. Its just hilarious to hear these people always say what do you bench ??. I lifted with world class guys like fred glass, eddie cone, and scott Edmiston. And every single one of them will tell you to build your core!! Squat,deadlift,farmers walk, and overhead log press! What do you bench. Hilarious

    • Agreed, plus height weight ratio, bench press shirts, PEDS. I was hitting 605 raw at one point but with a shirt in those days over 800 lbs. The video provided was probably the worst example. Typically your average gym goer is not using equipment.

    • When I was 48 years old at 5’8″ 180 lbs I benched 340 regularly but I was more proud of the leg press machine where I pressed over a 1000 lbs and would do sets with 800, my friend Paul was 2 inches shorter then me and I spotted him when he reped 405 twice. We had 2 guys that would bench 500 and many more that hit 405 regularly.
      At 70 years old now and after a motorcycle accident that took over a year to recover from I can still bench 280, might not be that impressive but I’m ok with it.

  3. I am 52 years old weighing 215 pounds. I have been lifting off and on for over 30 years for other sports, never focused solely on weights. I have a max bench of 410. Can I consider this an elite level loft due to my weight and age?

  4. This makes me feel good seeing this, i benched 485lbs 5 years ago at 36yo and my weight was 266lbs, easy 12 reps, im obviously not natty

  5. Back in 1992 at age 32 I weighed 180# and while I was rehabbing a knee from acl reconstruction I turned to powerlifting on the bench. I did one rep max of 395. Dumbbell flies of 140# and routinely did 4 sets of 20 bench unspotted of 225#.

  6. I was 32 years old working out of a gym in Mesa AZ back in the late 80’s & 90’s. I’d been lifting for about 5 years. I weighed in right about 220-225 lbs at 5’10”. I finally hit that mark of 405 lbs. But I saw my brother’s friend hit over 500 lbs bench. Completely amazed me. Guy was just under 6 ‘ tall & went about 250 lbs.


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