Hafthor Bjornsson Suffers Pec Tear Injury: “I Completely Tore My Upper Chest Off The Bone”

Hafthor Bjornsson Pec Tear Injury

Hafthor Bjornsson confirms that he suffered a pec tear injury during his powerlifting meet over the weekend

In what will surely be a gigantic hurdle for his comeback to strength sports, Hafthor Bjornsson has suffered a pec tear injury while competing at a powerlifting meet in his Iceland gym on Saturday, April 15, 2023. While the strongman seems in good spirits, he does acknowledge that this is a serious injury that will lead to challenges ahead.

Hafthor Bjornsson, the 2018 World’s Strongest Man and 3x Arnold Strongman Classic champion, was planning a massive comeback to strength sports after his stint in boxing. Part of that comeback was to make an attempt to break Dan Bell’s all-time world record raw (with straps) total of 2,607 pounds. As he prepared, Bjornsson was training in powerlifting – part of which involved a powerlifting meet competition this past weekend on April 15th, 2023.

During the meet, Hafthor Bjornsson attempted a bench press of 556 pounds when he suffered a sudden injury. The attempt and the injury itself was visibly noticeable during the competition live stream. Bjornsson held the weight at lockout when he received the start signal and shortly after called for assistance. Three spotters appeared on screen and helped him return the weight back on the rack. He was then assisted off the bench and walked off the screen.

You can see the entire incident on the live stream replay video below:

Hafthor Bjornsson confirms that he suffered a pec tear

Initially, there was no exact confirmation on the extent of the injury. Many believed that it was likely a pec tear injury. At the time of the event, the only detail confirmed was that Bjornsson was brought to the hospital.

On Monday, April 17th, 2023, Hafthor Bjornsson posted a short YouTube video on his official channel detailing the injury and providing an update. In the video, he confirmed that the injury is a pec tear. While he still does not know the full extent of the damage – he does believe that the pec tear is a very serious one – stating he thinks he, “completely tore the upper chest off the bone.” Bjornsson also stated that he will be receiving an MRI tomorrow.

Despite the serious nature of the injury and the implications it can have for the future of his athletic career, Hafthor Bjornsson seemed in good spirits. He admitted that things are hard currently without the ability to use his left arm or hand – but also stated that, “This is just a new journey.”

Bjornsson seems to be looking at this injury as a new challenge to overcome and remains optimistic that he can recover and still live his life as a passionate strength athlete. At the same time, he is not delusional about the challenge ahead and the seriousness of a pec tear of this magnitude. Bjornsson also admits that this injury is the, “biggest injury of my career.”

Beyond breaking Dan Bell’s world record, Hafthor Bjornsson previously announced that he would like to make a return to strongman in 2024 at the Arnold Strongman Classic. Whether or not he will be able to maintain these goals remains to be seen but more information will likely be incoming after the MRI and a few weeks of recovery to put perspective on the journey ahead.

You can watch Hafthor Bjornsson’s video update in full below:

Generation Iron Fitness Network will provide updates as more information becomes available. Until then, make sure to stay tuned for updates on all things bodybuilding, fitness, and strength sports.

Jacob Ladon
Jacob Ladon is a staff writer and former amateur bodybuilder. He has been passionate about bodybuilding since he was 15 years old and discovered the joys of training in the gym. He reports and comments on all bodybuilding related matters.