Sands School Gymnasium, 1913

Posted on Thursday, November 9th, 2017 by John Wood
On May, 24th, 1913, the George F. Sands school was dedicated and opened for business on Popular street in Cincinnati, Ohio’s West End. Here’s a look at the Gymnasium — outfitted with just about everything in The Narragansett Machine Company catalog. A little over seven decades later, a young John Wood attended this very school — and not a whole lot in the gym had changed! In my day, there were basketball hoops installed over the doorway and on some of the climbing ladders but the flying rings, the climbing poles, the Swedish Bars and some of the balance beams were all still there and in service. I always had a good time in gym class, but was not aware at the time of the historical significance of the facility. The school moved many years ago, but the building remains. It has recently been rehabbed into senior apartments and thankfully they have kept the gym intact.
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.

Wellesley College Gymnasium, 1905

Posted on Thursday, March 23rd, 2017 by John Wood
A look at the Wellesley College Gymnasium, circa 1905. This awesome facility was outfitted by A.G. Spalding & Bros. and consisted of 6 Counterbalanced Booms, 42 Stall Bars and Benches, 35 Italian Hemp Climbing Ropes, 12 Rope Ladders, 3 Vaulting Boxes, 3 Vertical Window Ladders, and 12 Balance Beams.
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 Michigan State Normal School Gymnasium, Ypsilanti, Michigan, 1894

Posted on Wednesday, February 8th, 2017 by John Wood
A look at The Michigan State Normal School Gymnasium in Ypsilanti, Michigan, circa 1894, the year it was built. This impressive red brick building was located across the street from the Water Tower in Ypsilanti (and if you have been to Ypsi, you know exactly where this is). This gymnasium was divided completely in half, the North half reserved for women and the South half for men. The Michigan State Normal School eventually became Eastern Michigan University, and unfortunately, this particular building was demolished in the mid-1960’s.
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.

Adrian, Michigan YMCA, 1905

Posted on Sunday, August 17th, 2014 by John Wood
A look at the interior of the Adrian, Michigan YMCA, circa 1905. The equipment selection was not numerous, but the results obtained from training with a running track, some flying rings, a climbing rope and a set of parallel bars will likely beat the pants off what can be done at most modern gyms with far more to choose from.
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 German Gymnasium, St. Pancras Road, London

Posted on Wednesday, August 13th, 2014 by John Wood

Here’s a rare look into The German Gymnasium, located at 26 St. Pancras Road, London, England, circa 1866. This facility was originally constructed by the German Gymnastic Society (hence the name) and used as the venue for some of the first organized athletic contests which later on led to the formation of the Olympic games. The German Gymnasium was designed by Edward A. Gruning and built by the firm of Piper and Wheeler. Even better: unlike most buildings of the era, this magnificent structure is still standing and in great shape (although not a gym).
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 West Point Gymnasium, 1895

Posted on Saturday, February 22nd, 2014 by John Wood
In the early 1800’s, the physical education program of the The United States Military Academy was sporadic, and lagged behind other institutions of higher education such as Harvard and Yale. To address this discrepancy, in 1885 West Point hired its first professional physical education instructor, Herman J. Koehler, who revitalized the program and made it one of the finest in the country.

One of Koehler’s major contributions was to secure funding for the building of a new gymnasium which, when completed in August of 1892, was superior to any in the world at the time. The rare shot shown above was how it looked in 1895. Look closely and you’ll see Indian clubs, wall pulleys, climbing ropes, tumbling mats, climbing ladders and many other pieces of classic gymnastic equipment.

Koehler was a member of the famed Frankford Squad.

The Olympic Club Gymnasium

Posted on Wednesday, February 5th, 2014 by John Wood

The Olympic Club Gymnasium

The Olympic Club in San Francisco, California is the oldest athletic club in the United States (established in 1860). The original location didn’t survive the great earthquake of 1906 but they relocated to a new location on Post Street in 1912. This is what their gymnasium looked like, circa 1915.

With plenty of natural lighting, an indoor track, climbing ropes, Indian clubs, balance beams, medicine balls, wall pulleys, climbing ladders and an awesome selection of globe barbells and dumbbells, I’d say this facility is just about all you could ever ask for in a gym.

The Gymnasium of the Romania College of Physical Education

Posted on Sunday, January 20th, 2013 by John Wood
The Gymnasium of the Romania College of Physical Education
Here’s a quick look at The Gymnasium of the College of Physical Education in Bucharest, Romania. Their most well-known graduate is the famed gymnastic coach Bela Karolyi.
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 Man in The Gymnasium

Posted on Thursday, December 13th, 2012 by John Wood

The Man in The Gymnasium

The Man in The Gymnasium… unfortunately his name is lost to the sands of time. We do know two things though: he had excellent taste in equipment AND was a snappy dresser. This picture was taken around 1900.
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.

U.S. Naval Academy Gymnasium, circa 1899

Posted on Friday, November 23rd, 2012 by John Wood

U.S. Naval Acadey Gymnasium 1899

A look at the U.S. Naval Academy Gymnasium, circa 1899 …Climbing ropes …Rowing machines …Pommel Horses …Climbing Ladders …Flying Rings …Tumbling Mats …Look closely and you’ll notice that the entire back wall is covered with racks of Indian Clubs.