male powerlifter Siamand Rahman pumps his fist as he is wheeled onto the stage

Siamand Rahman


The question had always been: how far could Siamand Rahman go?

Rahman became the first powerlifter to break the 300kg barrier at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. One year later, he secured his second world title in Mexico City. His main opponent was the bar and his human rivals knew they had to settle for fighting for silver.

He became the strongest man in Paralympic history after breaking the world record at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

And he continued to prove his status every year since, breaking the world record multiple times to edge towards the most anticipated lift in Para powerlifting - his long awaited 300kg lift.

Rahman’s natural physique and body dimensions have always been suited to powerlifting, and he initially took up the sport after his family and coaches encouraged him to try it out.

The Iranian began his career supported by his family and coach Ali Asghar in 2008.

He appeared on the world stage for the first time at the 2010 World Championships in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where he competed in the men’s over 100kg and won silver losing to teammate Karem Rajabi Golojeh.

He set a new world record on his fourth lift, but unfortunately did not count toward his medal performance.

At the Guangzhou 2010 Asian Para Games, he set another world record in the over 100kg category, lifting 287.5kg, which was more than enough to get him the gold.

In April 2012, he broke his own record once more, lifting 291kg at a competition in the United Arab Emirates.

During London 2012, he broke the Paralympic record with a lift of 280kg, a mark that previously belonged to Golojeh.

Leading into Rio 2016, Rahman kept people guessing on whether he would attempt 300kg on the world's biggest stage. He gave some indication of his potential however, breaking the world record nine times in three years from 2014-2016.

The anticipation when he did take to the bench in Rio was palpable. The venue was heavy with expectation.

He started out with a relatively easy 270kg to get himself going. Then on his second lift he went for the 300kg. As the green lights appeared from the judges, a smile spread across Rahman's face and he was congratulated by his coaching team amongst loud cheers.

He came out again and cleared 305kg on his third lift, feeding the fever of the crowds. But he was not finished.

Incredibly Rahman and his team decided he had some more left and registered a 310kg fourth round attempt. He successfully managed the lift to end powerlifting competitions at Rio 2016 on a huge high.

One of the greatest Paralympians of all time, the Iranian passed away in March 2020 at the age of 31 in his hometown Oshnavieh due to cardiac arrest.


Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Impaired range of motion

Further personal information

Kurdish, Persian
Higher education
Law - Azad University: Iran

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He began Para powerlifting in 2007 in Oshnavieh, Islamic Republic of Iran.
Why this sport?
He always had a powerful physique so his family and coaches encouraged him to try powerlifting. He immediately enjoyed the sport.

International debut

Competing for

General interest

Swimming. (Athlete, 15 Jul 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning gold at the Paralympic Games in 2012 and 2016. (SportsDeskOnline, 03 May 2021; Athlete, 15 Jul 2019)
Most influential person in career
His parents. (Athlete, 16 Jan 2018)
Hero / Idol
Iranian freestyle wrestler Gholamreza Takhti. (Athlete, 15 Jul 2019)
Awards and honours
He was named Best Powerlifter at the 2018 Asia-Oceania Championships in Kitakyushu, Japan. (, 24 Sep 2018)

In September 2016 he was voted the International Paralympic Committee [IPC] Best Male Athlete of the Month in recognition of his performance at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. He was also named the IPC Athlete of the Month for October 2014 and July 2015. (, 14 Oct 2016, 11 Aug 2015;, 10 Nov 2014)
He became the first Para powerlifter to lift over 300kg when he won gold in the +107kg category at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. (, 01 Mar 2020;, 01 Nov 2016)
He had an impairment to both legs due to the effects of polio. (Athlete, 15 Jul 2019;, 17 Feb 2017)
Other information
In March 2020 he died at the Nabi-akram Hospital in West Azerbaijan, Islamic Republic of Iran, following a cardiac arrest. (Iran National Paralympic Committee, 06 May 2020;, 01 Mar 2020)


Unit Date Rank
2010 IPC Powerlifting World Championships (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Over 100.00kg Final 2010-07-30 9999
London 2012 Paralympic Games (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's +100 kg Final Round 2012-09-05 1
2014 IPC Powerlifting World Championships (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Over 107.00 kg MD Final 2014-04-11 1
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's +107 kg Final Round 2016-09-14 1
Mexico City 2017 World Para Powerlifting Championships (Mexico City, Mexico)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Over 107.00kg Final 2017-12-07 1