Derek Poundstone

Derek Poundstone
Derek Poundstone
Born Derek Poundstone
September 28, 1981 (1981-09-28) (age 30)
United States USA
Residence Waterbury, Connecticut
Occupation Police officer/Strongman
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight 341 lb (155 kg)
Title "America's Strongest Man"
Spouse Kristin Poundstone
Competition record
Competitor for  United States
World's Strongest Man
2nd 2008 World's Strongest Man
4th 2009 World's Strongest Man
9th 2010 World's Strongest Man
5th 2011 World's Strongest Man
World Strongman Challenge
2nd 2007
1st 2008
2nd 2009
Arnold Strongman Classic
2nd 2008
1st 2009
1st 2010
IFSA Strongman World Championships
4th 2007
Strongman Super Series
1st 2008 Mohegan Sun Grand Prix
2nd 2008 Madison Square Garden
4th 2008 Sweden Grand Prix
1st 2008 Overall Champion
1st 2010 Mohegan Sun Grand Prix
America's Strongest Man
1st 2007
1st 2009
1st 2010
Giants Live
1st 2009 Mohegan Sun Grand Prix
1st 2010 Ukraine
Pressing the Apollon's Axle overhead at the 2008 Arnold Strongman Classic
Derek pulled 911.5 lbs during the Hummer Tire Deadlift at the 2008 Arnold Strongman Classic

Derek Poundstone (born on September 28, 1981, 6'1" (1,85m), 341 lb[1] is an American professional strongman athlete from Waterbury, Connecticut. Derek Poundstone is also a police officer for the Naugatuck, Connecticut Police Department and is the owner and landlord of an apartment complex. Derek spent the first ten years of his life in Italy and Spain.


Strength sports

Derek began by competing in powerlifting and progressed to become the Connecticut State Champion. He started competing in strongman after finding an advertisement for a contest on the back of a powerlifting flyer. After earning his Professional Strongman card from the ASC (American Strongman Corporation), Derek took two years off competing to enter the Police Academy and become a police officer. He returned to compete in strongman, and placed fifth in the 2006 St. Patrick's Strongman National Qualifier.[2] Derek then went on to place 2nd to the current IFSA World Champion Žydrūnas Savickas in the 2006 World Strongman Challenge contest in Tulsa, Oklahoma.[3] Next, Derek placed 5th in the 2006 America's Strongest Man contest.[4] This earned him an invite to the 2006 IFSA World Championships. On October 26, 2006, two weeks before the IFSA World Championships, Derek severely injured his lumbar spine during training while attempting a maximum effort deadlift of 366 kg (805 lb).[5] Derek had a lumbar disc herniation (L4/5) and a massive spinal cord hemorrhage. Doctors told him that he would never lift again due to the severity of the injury.[6]

Derek's return to the strongman competition circuit was the 2007 St. Patrick's Strongman contest in Columbia, South Carolina. Derek won by 13.5 points [7] and overcame his deadlifting injury fear by completing a 364 kg (800 lb) deadlift during the competition. This victory qualified Derek to compete in the 2007 America's Strongest Man contest, which Derek won by a record 30 points.[8] Derek also qualified to compete in the 2007 IFSA World Championships in Geumsan, South Korea.[9] Additionally, Derek received an invite from Dr. Terry Todd to compete at the 2008 Arnold Strongman Classic, in Columbus, Ohio.

Derek also competed in two Team Strongman contests and a Highland Games/Strongman hybrid contest. First was the USA vs. World team contest put on by Al Thompson [10] in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Derek and his team (Travis Ortmayer, Van Hatfield, Nick Best, Walt Gogola) pulled out an unprecedented victory against three of the top five European strongmen in the World, (Zydrunas Savickas, Vasyl Virastyuk, and Andrus Murumets). Team USA won the first three events and Team World won the next three events. Team USA won with a victory in the final event, the Atlas Stones.[11] Derek's next contest was in Callander, Scotland at the World Highland Games contest.[12] This contest was a Highland Games / Strongman hybrid. Derek won the event and set two world records. With Douglas Edmunds present, Derek broke Igor Pedan's 9 rep 125 kg (275 lb) Log Clean and Press World Record [13] by powering through 13 reps, with 130 kg (286 lb). Derek also broke the current World Champion's, Zydrunas Savickas, 140 kg (308 lb) Block Press World Record by pressing out a 145 kg (319 lb) block.[13] Derek's training partner Tom McClure also competed in Callander and placed 2nd. Derek's next contest was a team contest, the World's Strongest Nation held in Ukraine. This time Team USA consisted of Derek along with Travis Ortmayer, Tom McClure, and Brian Shaw. Team USA placed 2nd overall [14] behind Team Ukraine led by Vasyl Virastyuk.[15]

Derek competed in the 2007 IFSA World Championship held in Geumsan, South Korea. Derek was in 2nd position throughout the entire competition until the last event. During the final event, Derek ripped open his hands during the Farmer's Walk event, which caused him to drop the implements. Derek placed 4th overall in his first appearance at the World Championship, 2 points behind Mikhail Koklyaev and 1 point behind the 2006 World Champ Zydrunas Savickas. Vasyl Virastyuk won the competition, becoming the first athlete to win both the World's Strongest Man Title and the IFSA World Championships. Derek's performance was the best ever recorded by an American at the IFSA World Championships.[16]

Derek decided to compete on the WSM/SS circuit after sufficient political differences with IFSA. Derek was called up by Odd Haugen and asked to enter as a replacement athlete into the Mohegan Sun Super Series due to Kevin Nee pulling out with a torn biceps. Derek accepted and competed for the first time against Mariusz Pudzianowski. Derek defeated the four-time WSM champion and secured a qualification spot for the 2008 World's Strongest Man contest.

Derek competed in the 2008 Arnold Strongman Classic contest, his first appearance at the Arnold. Derek would take second place behind Zydrunas Savickas.[17]

On June 29, 2008 during the 2 day Fortissimus contest, Derek became the first American to defeat Zydrunas Savickas. Derek and Zydrunas were approximately 40 points ahead of all the other competitors. Derek was the only athlete who managed to lift the 517 lb Louis Cyr Stone and secured his victory and title at the "Mightiest Man on the Planet."

Derek became the 2008 Strongman Super Series champion after accumulating the most points throughout the Grand Prix. 1st at the Mohegan Sun, 2nd at Madison Square Garden, and 4th at Sweden earned Derek enough to take the overall title.

Derek competed in the 2008 World's Strongest Man competition where he and Mariusz Pudzianowski, Poland's then four-time champion would go head-to-head in the final event, the atlas stones, with Derek leading in points. In the atlas stones, Derek gained the lead, but as he lifted the final stone, the stone slipped, falling to the ground and giving Mariusz Pudzianowski his record 5th World's Strongest Man title.[18]

Derek’s next challenge was the 2009 Arnold Strongman Classic. With Zydrunas Savickas opting to take a year off, the crown was vacant. Derek set a new world record with 15 reps in the circus dumb bell event. Derek took first place overall, and became only the third man behind Mark Henry and Zydrunas Savickas to win the Arnold Strongman Classic title since its inception in 2002.[17]

In May 2009, Derek was scheduled to defend his title at the Mohegan Sun Strongman Championship hosted by Giants Live. Derek won five of six events, taking second on one event, and took the overall title. Derek also set a new world record on the max apollon's axle clean and press with 415 lbs.[19]

Derek competed in the 2009 World's Strongest Man competition, which took place in Malta, being in fourth place after Brian Shaw, Mariusz Pudzianowski and Zydrunas Savickas.[20]

Derek successfully defended his title at the 2010 Arnold Strongman Classic. Leading up to the last event, the timber carry, Derek had a 3 point lead over 6 time champion Zydrunas Savickas. Derek won the last event and the overall title for a second consecutive time, only the second man to accomplish this feat at the Arnold Strongman Classic. Zydrunas Savickas came in second and Travis Ortmayer came in third place. During the awards ceremony, Derek proposed to girlfriend on stage and she happily accepted.[17]

Derek defended his title at the 2010 Mohegan Sun Strongman Championships hosted by Giants Live, winning 3 out of 6 events including the shield carry. This was Derek's third consecutive victory at this contest. Brian Shaw came in second and Stojan Todorchev came in third place.[21]

Shortly before the 2010 World's Strongest Man contest, Derek severely tore his quad muscle and was unsure if he would be able compete, but he decided to heal and focus on upper body training. Derek was able to qualify for the finals and finished in 9th place overall.[22]

Less than 24 hours after the 2010 WSM contest, Derek won his 3rd America's Strongest Man title.[23]

Derek is the host of a radio show titled "Poundstone Power Radio" which airs every Wednesday from 7-9pm Eastern time, on SIRIUS channel 125 and XM channel 241. The first episode aired on November 3, 2010.[24]

Personal life

Derek married fiancee Kristin Nelson on Saturday June 25, 2011 in Branford, Connecticut’s Trinity Episcopal Church.[25] Derek's training partner Louis-Philippe Jean was a groomsmen at the wedding, and fellow strongman competitors Travis Ortmayer and Nick Best attended the wedding.[25]

Personal records - strongman

Atlas Stone

  • 252 kg {555 lb to 42"} Unofficial World Record Connecticut}
  • 239 kg {525 lb to 48"} {Arnold's Strongest Man, Columbus, Ohio}

Louis Cyr Stone

  • 241 kg {530 lb to 36"} World Record {Fortissimus - World Strength Challenge, Notre-Dame-Du-Rosaire, Quebec, Canada}

Log Press

  • 130 kg * 13 {286 lb - 75 sec time limit, Clean and Press each rep} World Record Callander Games, Scotland}

Overhead Block Lift

  • 145 kg {319 lb} World Record {Callander Games, Scotland}

Circus Dumbbell

  • {227 lb * 11 - 90 sec time limit, Clean and Press each rep} World Record {Arnold's Strongest Man, Columbus, Ohio}

Car Squat

  • 360 kg * 12 reps {792 lb} {World's Strongest Nation 2007, Ukraine}

Tire Deadlift

Hummer Tire Deadlift

  • {1015 lb} {Arnold's Strongest Man, Columbus, Ohio}

Timber Frame Carry

  • {1000 lb - 11.59 sec on 36' incline ramp} American Record {Arnold's Strongest Man, Columbus, Ohio}

Super Yoke

  • 500 kg {1100 lb - 9.59 sec for 32'} {Arnold's Strongest Man, Columbus, Ohio}

Personal records - powerlifting (ADAU)


Bench Press

  • 196 kg {430 lb} - 20-23 yr old 319 lb class American Record - November, 2003


  • 289 kg {635 lb} - 20-23 yr old 275 lb class American Record - June, 2003
  • 311 kg {685 lb} - 20-23 yr old 319 lb class American Record - November, 2003
  • 389 kg {855 lb} - recent gym lift personal record - October, 2007
  • 395 kg {870 lb} - Madison Square Garden Super Series - New York, New York - June 21, 2008
  • 413 kg {910 lb} - most recent gym lift personal record - 2011'
  • 415 kg {910 lb} - world strongest man personal record - 2011'


  • 750 kg {1650 lb} - 20-23 yr old 319 lb class American Record - November, 2003 [14]


Professional Competitive Record - [1st (6), 2nd (6), 3rd (3) - Out of Total(19)]
Performance Metric - .923 [American - .931 International - .915]

Professional 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th INJ DNQ Total
American 4 3 1 2 10
International 2 3 2 2 9
Combined 6 6 3 2 2 19
  • United States Arnold Strongman Classic - Columbus, Ohio - 1st Place (March 6–8, 2010
  • United States America's Strongest Man (USA National Championship) Morgantown, W. Va. - Winner - (7/24-7/26/09)
  • Canada Fortissimus - Louis Cyr Strength Challenge Montmagny, Quebec, Canada - 2nd place (6/24-6/25/09)
  • United States Giants Live (World's Strongest Man Qualifier) - Uncasville, Connecticut, USA - 1st Place(5/17/2009)
  • United States Arnold Strongman Classic - Columbus, Ohio - 1st Place (March 6–8, 2009)
  • United States World's Strongest Man - Charleston, West Virginia, USA - 2nd Place (September 2008)
  • Sweden Sweden Super Series (World's Strongest Man Qualifier) - Sweden - 4th place (8/16/2008)
  • Canada Fortissimus - Louis Cyr World Strength Challenge - Notre-Dame-Du-Rosaire, Quebec, Canada - winner (6/28-29/2008)
  • United States Madison Square Garden Super Series (World's Strongest Man Qualifier) - New York, New York, USA - 2nd place (6/21/2008)
  • United States Arnold's Strongest Man - Columbus, Ohio, USA - 2nd
  • United States Mohegan Sun Super Series (World's Strongest Man Qualifier) - Uncasville, Connecticut, USA - winner (1/19/2008) [15]
  • Lithuania World vs. Lithuania Team Competition - Vilinius, Lithuania - 2nd (10/27/2007)
  • Lithuania IFSA 2-Man Team World Championship - Vilinius, Lithuania - 3rd (10/7/2007)
  • South Korea IFSA World Championship - Geumsan, South Korea - 4th (2007) [16]
  • Ukraine World's Strongest Nation Team Competition - Ukraine - 2nd (2007) [17]
  • Scotland World Highland Games - Callander, Scotland - winner (7/29/2007)
  • United States USA vs. World Team Competition - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - winner (2007) [18]
  • United States America's Strongest Man (USA National Championship) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - winner (2007) [19]
  • United States St. Patrick's Strongman (USA National Championship Qualifier) - Columbia, South Carolina - winner (2007)[20]
  • Lithuania USA vs. Lithuania Team Competition - Lithuania - 2nd (2006) [21]
  • Ukraine World's Strongest Nation Team Competition - Kiev, Ukraine - 3rd (2006) [22]
  • United States America's Strongest Man (USA National Championship) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - 5th (2006) [23]
  • United States World Strongman Challenge (USA Grand Prix) - Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA - 2nd (5/19/2006) [24]
  • United States St. Patrick's Strongman (USA National Championship Qualifier) - Columbia, South Carolina, USA - 5th (3/17/2006) [25]
  • United States Florida Pro - Am - Florida, USA - 3rd (2005) [26]
  • United States Northeast Regional Strongman Showdown - Wilmington, Massachusetts, USA - winner (2004) earned ASC Professional Strongman card
  • United States Connecticut State Powerlifting Champion


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.