The Elitefts Manor— A Retirement Home for Powerlifters

TAGS: elitefts manor, Ken Whetham, retirement, powerlifter, dave tate, Elitefts Info Pages

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WARNING: Reading this article may be offensive to old, beat-up, broken down Powerlifters. READ AT YOUR OWN DISCRETION.

Do you ever wonder what happens to old, beat-up, broken down Powerlifters after they retire from the sport?

Everyone knows that Dave Tate is a genius when it comes to business. Dave’s insight into the sport has been unparalleled, almost a sixth sense for what lifters want and need. Elitefts has always had a great ability to distribute knowledge and educate lifters while providing the best equipment available in the sport. Having been involved in the sport for so long and going through his share of endless injuries, Dave realized that there was an un-tapped market screaming out to him, demanding his attention. This provided the fuel for his next venture: a retirement home for powerlifters. The elitefts Manor.

This has been a passion of Dave’s for quite a while and secretly he has built and constructed a new Powerlifting Rest Home, which claims to be the envy of all ordinary senior citizen facilities. This new prototype service will undoubtedly be the next successful venture and additional chapter in the elitefts business model legacy that every retired powerlifter will want to gravitate towards.

Let’s take a tour, shall we? I attended the tour with my lovely wife who also lifts and was curious to see the new digs (I’m certain she probably has some sort of deviant plan to leave me there, but that's just speculation on my part).

Upon arriving at the new facility in rural London, Ohio, we couldn’t help but notice it’s a nice two-level brick building in a serene tranquil area with nicely manicured hedges surrounded by a mature wooded lot and stone fence. First impression: very impressed. (Traci obviously decorated, not Dave)

We met a nice well-dressed gentleman manager at the doorway entrance of the home who introduced himself as Dave Tate. That’s odd, another Dave Tate?  When I asked him if that was his real name he stated, “Everyone who works at the manor is named Dave Tate.  That way if anything goes wrong, it’s always Dave Tate’s fault.”

Upon entering the foyer of the Elitefts Manor, there were four statues on display, two on each side of the corridor. Who are they?

Dave Tate (the manager, not the CEO) said: “Well, the first one is our founder Dave Tate when he was healthy and just started his powerlifting career.” I looked at the second statue that appeared to be an abomination out of the Terminator movie, kind of half robot, half man.

Who is that? I asked again. He said, “That’s Dave Tate after all his surgeries near the end of his powerlifting career.”

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Dave Tate pointed to the third statue and said, “This is what we imagine Jim Wendler would look like, if he were a real person. ” This reminded me of the video, in which Clint Darden claimed Jim Wendler wasn’t real, just a fabricated alter personality devised as a ruse by the great Dave Tate.

"Jesus, who is that last statue? Moses?"

“No, that’s Harry Selkow,” he replied.

Christ, he looks 300 years old! And what’s that in his hand, a camera?  Dave answered my confusion and said, "Harry was pretty famous for taking pictures of everyone and posting them on social media with outrageous descriptions and analogies, he was one of the best!"

I continue to examine the statues as Dave gave me details on each of them. Just as we were about to move on, we heard a shriek from the other direction.


It was a scream from the corridor! It scared the crap out me, and my wife jumped about three feet in the air!

"What was that?!"

“That was Dave Tate’s statue. We have it programmed to yell that whenever anyone walks by. It's our 'welcome to the manor' greeting. It scares the crap out of everyone, but we wanted everyone to remember our founder the way he was in real life.”

Moving along, a little unsettled but none the less impressed by the screaming statue, we couldn’t help but notice a door with a huge red and white sign with a warning: KEEP OUT. DANGER. 

Dave explained, “That door is the door to Rhodestown. It’s a special place we send for our tenants that are clinically insane or psychologically unraveled. You really don’t want to go there, unless you never want to come back normal.”

We strolled into Dave Tate's office (the manager, not the founder), which was nicely decorated with lots of trophies, pictures, medals, elitefts paraphernalia, a wall of books, and an oil painting on the wall of Dave Tate the elitefts founder.


What does the Elitefts Manor offer?

“We offer a variety of options for retired lifters that we feel will fit their needs perfectly.”

I asked Dave for more details and he went into the following monologue.

“We have different suites available dependent on your individual taste, we offer the Raw suite which we refer to as the 'Casey Williams/Brandon Smitley' model and which comes standard with twin bed, squat rack, set of dumbbells, and a complementary elitefts singlet. The toilet is also positioned a little lower than standard so when you squat, you can get to legal depth.”

“Our next model suite is referred to as our 'Marshall Johnson' model and comes with a king bed, competition monolift, glute ham raise, reverse hyper and belt squat machine. It comes standard with vinyl flooring because we found the large amount of discarded ammonia caps stained the carpet. The toilet height is a little higher but would still get you at least two white lights. The 10,000 watt stereo will only play death metal.”

“We offer three distinctly different rooms where tenants can congregate and spend time socializing: The Glory Room, where ex-lifters can tell stories about how awesome they were 'back in the day,' how many records they broke ,and how they kicked everyone’s ass way back at the beginning of time. Our staff refers to this room as 'Yuk Yuks,' where they can drop in and listen to all of the BS."

“Our second gathering room we refer to as The Whining Room where ex-lifters can bitch about torn pecs, ripped biceps, obliterated triceps, replaced shoulders, titanium hips. In this room, lifters adamantly defend how f*cking awesome they could have been if they could have stayed healthier a little while longer. It is kind of an official bitchfest room."

“Our last room where people collaborate we call The Selkow Room, where lifters can gather, laugh, carry on and just blather mindlessly about anything and everything that’s remotely funny or entertaining. What you hear in this room is petty much just mindless rhetoric and meaningless babble.  We refer to it most times as the fun room."

“We take our tenants nutrition very seriously and our cafeteria is a one-of-a-king high tech creation that all staff refer to as John Meadows II.  This room has all stainless steel appliances, and a staff that can create everything from super clean tilapia and broccoli meals for the tenants who want to manage their weight to the opposite end of the spectrum where calories are king: pizza soaked in olive oil, dirty burgers smothered in mayo, ice cream and creamy pasta for our SHW crew. We supply protein shakes, BCAA’s, creatine, dextrose and glutamine. We also have fully stocked cupboards with anything lifters could ask for. We have pet names for each cupboard: Joey Smith, Chad Aichs, and Vinnie D for any midnight snacking impulses and anyone who has to keep fueling the machine.”

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“There are also a few rules that you need to follow if you’re accepted as a tenant in our luxurious facility.”


  • If you must wear briefs or suit bottoms, make sure that they’re loose enough that staff will be able to remove them in the event you need to go potty. It creates quite a mess when staff can’t get these off in time. If you have to be constantly warned we will have medical staff insert a catheter through a hole in your briefs.
  • If you huff ammonia regularly, we suggest you use a bottle of Nose Tork instead of individual ammonia caps. Before we had this rule some rooms looked like they were hit with a snow storm.
  • No wheelchair races in the corridor. Staff and tenants have been injured during unnecessary rough horseplay.
  • When Santa visits at Christmas, don’t pull his beard — it drives Jo nuts!
  • No tampering with any of the tenants CPAP machines. Changing the settings is considered mischief, and we don’t need to see another Bane impersonation from the Batman movie.
  • All adult diapers or Depends should be properly discarded in the provided sealed containers. Leaving them hidden under your bed, covers or pillows is inappropriate and the staff aren’t impressed with your humor..
  • If you can’t control your bladder, you’re wearing a diaper. End of story.
  • No food fights in the cafeteria.
  • If you get a nosebleed, please clean it up or take a selfie. You might think its cool, but going around showing off to all the other tenants and screaming "fuck yeah!" will not be tolerated.
  • No putting raw lifters in gear against their will. This is cruel and inhumane.
  • If you use the exercise room, put your damn weights away!
  • No betting your pension checks on any illegal activity involving squatting, benching or deadlifting.
  • No feats of strength. You’re an old, beat up, broken down, retired lifter. Deal with it.

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We offer a variety of fun events and challenges for our tenants in order to keep them engaged and offer different forms of entertainment. Some of our most popular games to date:

  • “Is That Sasquatch or Jim Wendler”?
  • The Dry Diaper Game
  • Pin The Briefs on the Raw Lifter
  • Trade You For Your I.V.
  • High Squat/Low Squat
  • Multiply Mixed Martial Arts
  • Can You Tie Your Own Chucks and Live?
  • I Was The Greatest Lifter In The Day
  • I Survived Rhodestown And Lived To Tell About It

“Once in a while you may notice that we have tours coming through the Elitefts Manor with groups of young lifters. This is proactive program designed by Dave Tate to show young lifters what they can expect if they continue to get injured and don’t train smart. It’s kind of our own version of “Scared Straight.” Let me tell you, it scares the shit out of these young lifters to see these old, beat up, incoherent, broken down legends limping and hobbling around, talking to themselves, screaming at each other, bitching about depth, shitting their pants, showing each other their torn pecs, biceps and bionic hips. But we never take them to Rhodestown. That would be devastating for them. We get the odd kids who pretend to be tough and this doesn’t’ bother them, but you can tell that they are shitting their pants. It’s a good program.”

“Unless you have any other questions, that concludes our Elitefts Manor tour. Let me know if you’re interested in reserving a room. If you reserve a room before January, we’ll throw in a bag of free elitefts swag and set up a personal visitation with Hall of Famer Steve Goggins. Steve is in room 117. Also, if you don’t mind filling out a survey before you go, please tell us what might make your tour more enjoyable. We welcome any suggestions you think would improve the Elitefts Manor."

The Elitefts Manor is a new facility and we are always looking for new ways to improve.  It would be greatly appreciated if you could offer some of your personal insight into establishing some suggestions for additional tenant rules and setting up some extra curricular activities for their entertainment.

Please feel free to leave your comments below.


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