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Calculating your Wilks score can help you determine relative strength by comparing your lift against other athletes after accounting for body weight differences. Read on to learn what the Wilks coefficient is, why it matters for powerlifting, and how you can easily use the Wilks calculator to find your strength index.
What Is the Wilks Formula?
The Wilks formula, developed by Robert Wilks, determines a powerlifting coefficient that lets you evaluate relative strength regardless of body weight differences.
It works by relating your total mass lifted back proportionally to your body weight, resulting in the Wilks score - a standardized strength index.
Why Use the Wilks Calculator?
Here are the key reasons why powerlifters use the convenient Wilks calculator:
- Normalizes performances for body weight differences
- Provides objective relative strength score
- Rank your powerlifting performance vs. others
- Universal standard across weight classes
- Qualify for competitions (e.g. Pro card)
- Track your powerlifting progress over time
Applying the Wilks formula through an easy online calculator enables you to determine how strong you are compared to other athletes in a standardized way.
Looking Up Your Wilks Score
Using the Wilks calculator is simple. Here are the steps:
- Select your gender
- Enter your body weight
- Input your overall weight lifted total
- Get your Wilks score!
For example, if a 75 kg male lifts weights totaling 500 kg, after entering this into the calculator, the result would be:
- Wilks Score = 386
So how do you interpret your score? Compare it to these strength standards:
Wilks Score |
Strength Levels |
Over 450 |
Elite |
400 – 450 |
Excellent |
350 – 400 |
Good |
Under 300 |
Untrained |
Elite (450+): World-class strength reserved for the top powerlifters in a weight class. Capable of record-breaking performances.
Excellent (400-449): Professional-level lifting mastery reflecting dedication to the sport and natural ability. Near top percentiles.
Good (350-399): Significantly above amateur status in strength. Hard training lifter making steady progress over the years.
Fair (300-349): Average everyday gym goer strength levels. Recreational lifting shape.
Untrained (Under 300): Needs more resistance training focus and proper programming to build powerlifting strength.
Tracking Progress Over Time
Another great benefit of the Wilks formula is using it to track lifting progress over months and years.
For instance:
Date |
Body Weight |
Total Lifted |
Wilks Score |
Jan 1 |
75 kg |
500 kg |
386 |
July 1 |
78 kg |
550 kg |
402 |
Here you can clearly see the lifter gained body weight while significantly increasing the total weight lifted - resulting in an improved Wilks score.
Monitoring scores over time keeps you motivated and provides numerical evidence you're getting stronger relative to your body weight.
Pro Considerations
For elite powerlifters, knowing your up-to-date Wilks score is critical for a few key reasons:
- Meet professional qualifying totals for your weight class
- Rank on all-time Wilks score lists (e.g. #15 all-time)
- Compare scores against competitors
- Negotiate sponsorship deals and appearance fees
A high Wilks coefficient verifies your performance merits and opens doors in the professional powerlifting world.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q1: What is Wilks?
Wilks is a formula used to measure relative strength in powerlifting. It helps compare the strength levels of individuals across different body weights.
Q2: How is the Wilks score calculated?
The Wil score is calculated based on an's total lifted weight lifting (typically squat, bench press, and deadlift), their body weight, and a set of coefficients. The formula is complex, but there are online calculators available to determine the Wilks score.
Q3: What does the Wilks score indicate?
The Wilks score indicates an individual's strength relative to their body weight.
Conclusion
Knowing your personal Wilks score allows you to measure objective lifting performance, identify strengths and weaknesses, motivate progress through precise quantitative tracking, qualify for meets, compare to other lifters, and benchmark against standardized strength classifications.
Read More: Wilks Score | A Beginner's Guide - Powerlifting Perfection