Joseph Vitole’s Strong Teeth
Posted on Friday, October 20th, 2017 by John Wood
“… looming before my vision as a standout, was a feat by Joseph Vitole, a 155 lb. lad whom I trained right after World War I. Vitole had the most perfect teeth I have ever seen. Each tooth met the other in his bite. He had a square jaw, a stocky neck and a rugged all round build. He specialized in all teeth and jaw hobbies. He really liked to bite and grip with his jaws and this lead to the lifting of weights with his teeth alone. He had a leather “bit” which was attached to a strong chain. This chain had a link-clasp at the other end. Joe would simply wrap one end of this chain around the bar of a bell, then take a firm grip upon the leather mouthpiece, place his hands upon his lower thighs and pull with the back of his neck until the weight raised a few inches off the floor. He trained a lot with this sort of novelty lifting. gradually his poundages increased until he was absolutely sure of doing the unheard of (then) total of 550 pounds! I have seen him do this lift many times in practice. Finally, Bernarr McFadden promoted a physique contest for both men and women in 1921.
At this affair which ran for one week at the old Madison Square Garden, NYC, there were staged various unique events and one of these was a contest in teeth-lifts. I was a judge in this particular affair. Joseph Vitole then and there made an official record of 550 lbs. in the teeth-lift which, to the best of my knowledge, has never been broken. Now please check up on what I have written: Vitole weighed only 155 lbs. himself, yet with the power of his back, neck, jaws and teeth, he lifted this weighted barbell, which was officially tested and checked by many assigned for that particular purpose, and found to weigh 550 lbs. Vitole often told me afterwards that he could easily lift much more than that poundage…”
~ Earle E. Liederman