It has only been fairly recently that kettlebell sport has become better known in this part of the world. In competitive contests the lifts are the ‘Two Kettlebell Jerk’ and ‘One Kettlebell Snatch’; performed in that order for ten minutes each. The competitor with the highest overall score wins. With the immense increase in popularity as of late, perhaps some day well see kettlebell lifting as an Olympic event.
For several years prior to the 1980 Moscow Olympics, the Soviet Union produced a series of commemorative coins celebrating their ethnic sporting heritage. The above 10 ruble coin, shows one of the most iconic traditional sports: Kettlebell lifting — a stout fellow stands with a kettlebell lifted high above his head.
Franz Bienkowski, known professionally as ‘Cyclops,’ was the first lifter to introduce the bent press to Britain. His best performance in this lift was 250 pounds. Cyclops was a partner of Charles A. Sampson and rival to Sandow. Cyclops’ favorite feats though were breaking chains wrapped around his arms (shown here) as well as bending or breaking coins.
Eugen Sandow was bodybuilding’s first superstar and lent his likeness to a number of different products, including cigars, pins and a chocolate cocoa drink. Sandow’s Cocoa didn’t last long. Some of other big chocolate manufacturers saw Sandow’s brand as a threat. They who lowered their prices and forced Sandow out of the market. The factory, which opened in 1913, shut down production in 1916.
Tokens, like the one shown above, were used for the promotion of Sandow’s Cocoa and are quite rare. The image shown here has been enlarged to roughly twice the size to show detail.