One of the strongest weight lifters in the world is Bryan Benzel, in this video he attempts to squat 705 pounds 8 times and his nose bursts open from all the pressure.
VIDEO AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGE:
Bryan Benzel played college football at the University of Nebraska before taking up strongman after a friend introduced him in his mid-twenties. Benzel’s favourite event is the Atlas stones. “It’s a mixture of how iconic it is and because it’s typically been a strong event for me.” Although after dropping a 181kg stone on his foot earlier in his career – nearly losing it to the resulting infection – he’s got first-hand (maybe that should be first-foot?) experience of how real the stakes in strongman can be. Benzel’s proudest strongman moment to date is placing 2nd in the 2015 Arnold Amateur World Championships. Ever the fierce competitor, it’s also his biggest disappointment as he felt he could have taken first.
The concept behind “The World’s Strongest Men”, as it was originally named, was developed in 1977 for CBS by Langstar Inc. David Webster, a Scot who later received an OBE for his services to sport, was the head coordinator of the competition from its inception. Dr Douglas Edmunds, seven-times Scottish shot and discus champion and twice world caber champion worked with Webster and when Webster retired Edmunds took over. These two men were responsible for inviting the competitors and choosing the events. In the meantime, in 1982, CBS sold the rights to the BBC, who in turn sold the rights to TWI. In 1987, the WSM was not held for the only time since its inception. In that year the first and only non-team Pure Strength competition was held but it was not part of the WSM franchise.
For the first several contests, well-known American color commentators and analysts were used on the network broadcast. These included Brent Musburger, Tom Brookshier, and acknowledged strength authority, journalist and author Dr. Terry Todd. Todd was a former powerlifting world record holder himself and went on to establish the H.J. Lutcher Stark Center for Physical Culture and Sports in 1990. He also was asked to establish The Arnold Strongman Classic in 2001 by Arnold Schwarzenegger. This competition has the largest purse of any Strongman contest, with a $72,000+ top prize in 2017.
During this early period, the contest ranks consisted mostly of American football players, powerlifters, and bodybuilders and held in American locations until it was moved to Christchurch, New Zealand in 1983. Two-time winner Bruce Wilhelm (USA) retired and was succeeded by the massive Don Reinhoudt in 1979, 162kg (357lb) heavyweight powerlifter of the USA. Reinhoudt still holds several unequipped world records in powerlifting to this day.
In 1979, newcomer and legendary powerlifter Bill Kazmaier (USA) made his appearance, coming in 3rd after leading much of the competition. He dominated the sport to such an extent from 1980-82 (winning by a record 28 points in 1980), he eventually was left out of the competition, even after becoming the first man to win 3-consecutive WSM titles  He set prodigious marks with a 478.5kg (1055lb) silver dollar coin deadlift, 439.5kg (969lb) squat(smith machine), and a then-record 165.6kg (365lb) log lift with a rough, unbalanced log. His legendary status eventually earned him a place in the WSM Hall of Fame.