Indian weightlifting champion Maibam Itomba Meitei probably has the strongest pinky fingers in the world. The 26-year-old from Imphal city in the state of Manipur recently set the Guinness World Record for the most number of ‘pinky pull ups’ – he used his little fingers to pull his chin above the bar 16 consecutive times in 30 seconds.
Maibam broke the world record previously set by an American weight lifter, who was able to do only 16 pull ups in one minute. He completed the stunning feat quite comfortably during an event organised at the Jawaharlal Nehru Manipur Dance Academy. The audience, consisting of several local politicians, was left speechless by Maibam’s display of sheer strength.
A specially designed iron bar was used for the performance – it had two small hooks for Maibam to insert his two little fingers. Once he laced his pinkies through the hooks, he was able to lift his body (weighing 51 kilograms) up with tremendous ease, bringing his chin all the way over to the bar.
To perform such an unimaginably tough task, Maibam went through several years of rigorous training. He has been perfecting his pinky pull-ups techniques for 14 years, with the specific goal of setting the world record. He also mentioned that during practice, he was actually able to do 28 pull ups in a minute. He wanted to do 30 on the day of the official performance, but he had to stop after only 16 pull ups in 30.906 seconds.
This was because of a serious glitch that occurred during his performance. His left little finger got stuck in a sharp edge and he began to bleed. But nothing stopped the strong young man from reaching his goal – and he eventually succeeded in breaking the record.
Maibam has been doing pinky pull-ups for a very long time now. He first started to gain fame after he performed at a local Annual Yaoshang Sports Festival. Soon after, he was featured in India’s Limca Book of World Records, and also in the Asia Book of Records. He said that he was inspired to become a Guinness World Record holder by Moirangthem Okendro who is also a record holder for the largest topiary in the world.
Apart from breaking records with his little finger, Maibam has also won several awards for weightlifting. He was the winner at the State Level Weightlifting Championship in Manipur in 2007, and runner-up at the All-India Weightlifting Championship that same year.