Lucy Underdown is a Kent-based strongwoman who has risen to prominence in the last few seasons, thanks mainly to her prodigious deadlifting ability. She currently owns the women’s Deadlift world record and was the first female athlete to pull 318kg (700lb). She works fulltime as a police officer, so must juggle career pressures with being one of the planet’s strongest women. Prior to becoming involved in strongwoman she threw shot put and discus from the age of 11 until she was 25 and was ranked as high as number 3 in the UK.
Lucy loves the community within strongwoman and the fact that the women are highly competitive, but also push and support each other. She also loves that strongwomen represent women as being strong physically as well as emotionally. The athletes are all different shapes and sizes, and she thinks the sport is very inclusive in that respect.
Suffering with anxiety she sometimes struggles with her nerves, and this is something she has learnt to control over the last couple of years but still needs to work hard to control. She confesses to finding it hard to understand how strongwomen can be ridiculed on social media and loves to let her feats of strength answer her haters.
As a former thrower, Lucy used to weightlift as part of her training for shot put and discus. When she gave up athletics she continued to lift and was inspired by watching Terry Hollands and other top level strongmen training at her gym. Deciding to give it a go, she eventually entered her first contest in 2018 and the rest is history. She describes strongwoman as her ”hobby that has got out of control.“
Her first major international contest came at the 2020 Arnold Amateur Strongwoman World Championships in Columbus, Ohio, where she placed 7th. Characteristically, her best result came in the Deadlift for Reps – an event she has excelled in throughout her career. The following year she would become the first woman in history to deadlift 300kg (661lb), a feat she achieved at Milton Keynes MK Dons Stadium on May 31st.
In August that year she came 3rd at UK’s Strongest Woman, a placing she would repeat in 2022, coming behind Rebecca Roberts and Donna Moore. In that contest she highlighted her amazing deadlift ability once again, managing a staggering 18 reps at 200kg (441lb).
In 2022 she managed wins at England’s Strongest Woman, where she beat 2019 World’s Strongest Woman, Andrea Thompson. In Doncaster, she added the Britain’s Strongest Woman title to her resume and capped off the year with an impressive 4th place showing at her first World’s Strongest Woman contest.
In 2023 Lucy took top honours at the Official Strongman European Championships, where she defeated Rebecca Roberts in a thrilling three-day contest The following month Underdown extended her own Deadlift World Record at the World Deadlift Championships where she completed a 318kg/702lb pull – becoming the first woman in history to break the 700lb barrier.
In August 2023, Lucy won the OSG European Championships, defeating Wales’s Rebecca Roberts in a thrilling contest that went right to the wire. Despite winning four of the six events, Underdown’s winning margin was just 2-points. Event victories in the Log Lift, Sandbag Steeplechase, and Deadlift Ladder failed to shake off Roberts and Lucy led by just a single point going into the Power Stairs, which she won by over 3-seconds to take the title.
Deadlift: 318kg/702lb (World Record)
227kg (500lb) for 12 reps (World Record)
200kg (441lb) for 18 reps (World Record)
Log lift: 112.5kg/248lb
Axle Press 115kg/254lb
Log lift: 120kg/265lb
Deadlift: 300kg/661lb for 3 repetitions
As the current Britain’s Strongest Woman, Lucy will be defending her title at the Doncaster Dome on 30th September 2023 as part of the Giants Live Weekend of Strength double feature. She is also confirmed to appear in the UK team for this year’s World’s Strongest Nation on 18th November at the M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool.
She will no doubt be looking to improve on her 4th place finish at the Official Strongman Games’ World’s Strongest Woman contest in December and will have a podium place in her sights.
On Instagram, Lucy’s account can be found at: @lucyunders_strongwoman. She keeps her page regularly updated with training videos and competition news as well as updates about her daily life. She can also be found on Facebook and YouTube, where there are numerous videos featuring her. Her performance at the World Deadlift Championships will be aired on Channel 5 during the festive period as part of their World’s Strongest Man broadcast.