Milo Steinborn’s Orange Avenue Gym

Posted on Tuesday, April 30th, 2019 by John Wood
Milo Steinborn's Orange Avenue Gym
Henry “Milo” Steinborn was a 5’8″ 205 lb German wrestler and strongman who became the first man to ever squat 500 lbs. In fact, his world record squat of 553 lbs. (set during the 1920’s) would not be officially bested until the early 1950’s by Doug Hepburn. It was Milo who popularized the heavy deep knee bend as one of the most productive training lifts for anyone interested in building real strength.

In 1952, Milo opened the Orange Avenue Gym down in Orlando, Florida, which makes it the oldest weightlifting gym in America. Along with plenty of weights and barbells, Milo’s Gym had a wrestling ring and other physical training equipment. Milo is flanked here by his sons Dick (left) and Henry (right).

It was here that Milo taught a young Jim Flanagan how to get strong. I was fortunate enough to visit the Orange Avenue Gym on a trip back in 2003 — it still had some of Milo’s original training equipment.

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.

Alfons Dobiczek

Posted on Thursday, April 4th, 2019 by John Wood
Alfons Dobiczek
Alfons Dobiczek, from Ruda Slaska, Poland, won the Polish light-heavyweight lifting championships once and came in second on two other occasions. Here he is around 1920 with a selection of his training equipment.

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.

Carl Busch

Posted on Wednesday, April 3rd, 2019 by John Wood
Carl Busch
Another look at Carl Busch as he performs a Crucifix lift with a pair of German Kettlebells. At one time Busch had an act where he wrestled a bull (Busch always won.)

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.

Unknown Strongman #9

Posted on Saturday, March 9th, 2019 by John Wood
Unknown Strongman #9
Another entry in our unknown strongman series. Like all of them, this fellow has great equipment AND is a snappy dresser.
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.

Georges Theurillat

Posted on Thursday, February 28th, 2019 by John Wood
Georges Theurillat
Here the little-known french weightlifter Georges Theurillat performs a support (?) with an excellent globe garbell weighing in at 360 French Livres. That’s roughly 388 pounds. Note the sand-pit floor (which was more forgiving to the globe barbells if dropped) and the cannon on the wall (which was indeed for lifting.)
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.

Rigoulot’s Custom Globe Barbell

Posted on Wednesday, December 5th, 2018 by John Wood
A look at Charles Rigoulot’s custom barbell and the modern reproduction made by Andy Jackson. In over six decades, I do not believe that either of these pictures have ever been compared side-by-side, except in this post. I wonder if we will ever see a barbell of this type ever again?
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.

Ernest Cadine

Posted on Monday, August 6th, 2018 by John Wood
Another great shot of the champion French Weight lifter Ernest Cadine at the conclusion of a heavy one-arm snatch. Even though the quality of this old picture is not perfect, Cadine’s incredible muscle density is evident.

It’s not hard to see why he won the gold medal at the 1920 Olympic Games, likely around the same time this picture was taken.

Note the cannon on the wall behind him. Yes, it was used specifically for lifting purposes.

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.

The Mighty Young Apollo

Posted on Wednesday, August 1st, 2018 by John Wood
The Mighty Young Apollo — A.K.A. Paul Anderson from Melbourne, Australia performed many unusual feats during his colorful career. He was fond of the Human Link Feat, letting cars and trucks run over him, and pulling railroad cars with his teeth. He once let an eight ton elephant stand on his chest! One of his feats — “The Bridge of Death” involved taking a wrestler’s bridge position whilst two men with heavy sledge hammers smashed a piece of granite on his chest, oh, and a hunting knife was placed on the ground below him with the blade at his heart! He made it through though, the Mighty Young Apollo actually was still performing amazing feats into his 80’s. Here he is bending a steel bar in his teeth.

Hermann Goerner

Posted on Saturday, June 16th, 2018 by John Wood
Hermann Goerner was never too far from the weights, even when he was on vacation. Here he snatches 190 pounds with one arm, in street clothes, and standing ankle deep in loose sand. — Now that’s strong.
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.

John Grimek and Classic Weights

Posted on Thursday, May 24th, 2018 by John Wood
When you work at the York Barbell Company you get to lift some classic weights any time you want to. Here’s John Grimek about to do just that. The top one is the famous Louis Cyr Challenge Dumbbell. The middle one is a giant dumbbell which belonged to the great French strongman Apollon. You can see the football player Tim Krumrie lifting it here. The bottom globe barbell may have belonged to Warren Lincoln Travis.