Syd Devis

Posted on Monday, April 14th, 2014 by John Wood

Syd Devis

A look at the great Syd Devis, of the famous Camberwell Weight-Lifting Club, student of W.A. Pullum and 10-stone Amateur Champion of Great Britain, 1916-17. It is also worth noting that Syd’s forearms appear as big (if not bigger than) as his upper arms…
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Saxon Brown

Posted on Friday, March 21st, 2014 by John Wood

Saxon Brown

In 1924, at seventeen years of age, Saxon Brown was Britain’s strongest youth. As a professional, he performed many traditional feats of strength such as Nail Driving, Nail Bending, Card Tearing, The Human Chain and Steel Scrolling.

Brown could also lift a car from the side and would let a motorcycle drive over his neck as a part of his act…he is thought to be the first man to pull a bus with his teeth. Brown was also clearly a big fan of chest expanders.

Arthur Lancaster: The Man With The Grip of Iron

Posted on Monday, February 10th, 2014 by John Wood

Arthur Lancaster, of Brixton, England, desired to do something that had never been accomplished before, and on July, 4th, 1908, he accomplished his goal. It was on that date, at the Crystal Palace (London), that he swung an eight pound blacksmith’s hammer for twelve straight hours. It was supposed to be a contest of endurance against a Frenchman, but the latter did not keep his engagement, so the Englishman began his task alone (albeit, still in front of two judges.)

Lancaster swung the hammer with one hand during meal breaks and resumed two-handed swinging once finished. It was estimated that Lancaster “lifted” over 350 tons over the course of his hammer-swinging session. Unsurprisingly, Lancaster reported that his performance was as much a triumph mentally as physically. Thereafter, he was known as: “The Man With The Grip of Iron.”

Bert Assirati’s One Arm Handstand

Posted on Friday, January 24th, 2014 by John Wood

Bert Assirati's One Arm Handstand

Many hand balancing experts are generally of the smaller, “gymnastic-type” physique,but there were actually several larger strength athletes who could perform hand balancing feats with ease.

At well over 300 pounds, the great Canadian Champion Doug Hepburn was a great hand balancer, as was the famous British strongman and Professional wrestler Bert Assirati, (shown here.)

At a young age, Bert was taught how to do all manner of hand balancing feats by an ex-circus performer. You can certainly tell by this picture that he has power to spare. No doubt Assirati’s one arm handstand training contributed to his one arm dumbbell press of 160 lbs.

All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Joe Price

Posted on Tuesday, January 17th, 2012 by John Wood

Joe Price the Blacksmith Strongman nails in a notice with a large sledgehammer

Joe Price, of Gloucester, England, is one example of many blacksmiths who were also strongmen. Needless to say — and very obvious in the photo above — the vigorous muscular development due to smithing came in very handy while performing feats of strength. Price was trained by W.A. Pullum and went on to win the British Heavyweight Lifting Championship in 1922 and 1923. In addition to his lifting exploits, Price was also British Champion Farrier in 1928. Price even wrote an excellent “Vulcan” training course on using a sledge hammer to build strength (a copy of which we have been lucky enough to recently come across.) Here, Price nails in a notice with a hammer weighing in at half a hundredweight – not bad!

W.A. Pullum’s Challenge

Posted on Tuesday, October 18th, 2011 by John Wood

W.A. Pullum was a great British Strongman who set scores of strength records during his competitive career. Like many Oldtime Strongmen, Pullum had his own strength challenge. Using the special thick-handled globe barbell shown here, a lifter had to do a “Two Hands Anyhow” with a poundage equal to 1-1/2 times his own bodyweight and simultaneously lift a kettlebell loaded a third of the barbell poundage with the other hand.

Pullum used to perform this “double-bodyweight” feat twelve times per week but in all his years, his “challenge” was never accepted.

All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc., Not to be reproduced without permission, All Rights Reserved
Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2019 by John Wood and Thunderdome Media Inc. Not to be reproduced without permission. All rights reserved. We will most likely grant permission but please contact us if you would like to repost. IMPORTANT: Equipment and books, courses etc. pictured in blog posts are generally not available for sale unless specifically noted.

Health and Strength Magazine: October 26th, 1907

Posted on Wednesday, August 31st, 2011 by John Wood
Health and Strength Magazine: October 26th, 1907
The great British strongman Thomas Inch graces the cover of the October 26th, 1907 issue of Health and Strength Magazine with his latest feat: holding a loft a bicycle and its rider.  These old Health and Strength mags are all but impossible to find, luckily, we just came across a few of them…