The Russian Strongman Vsevolod Kherts

Posted on Monday, October 14th, 2013 by John Wood
Vsevolod Kherts
The Royal Moscow Circus has performed on American shores for many years. If you caught their show from 1956 through 1967, you also probably got a chance to see Vsevolod Kherts lift some pretty amazing weights in entertaining ways. This pullover and press from a bridge with a 300 lb. thick-handled globe barbell is pretty outstanding on several levels.

“Old Joe” Taylor

Posted on Sunday, September 15th, 2013 by John Wood

“Old Joe” Taylor of Hamilton, Ontario does a bit of Neck Training. He was the only man in the whole city able to perform the feat shown here: lifting a 250-pound block of stone with his neck in this manner. “Old Joe” was 70 years old at the time, stood 5’6″ and weighed only 118 pounds. We’ll cover a few of Joe’s other amazing strength feats at a later date. Also: note the Grimek picture on the wall of old Joe’s Gym.
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Author: John Wood. All contents, including images and text, copyright © 2005-2021 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.

Kettlebells in Japan

Posted on Saturday, June 22nd, 2013 by John Wood
Kettlebells in Japan

Japanese amateur wrestler Kitahata Kanetaka is shown here doing a few neck bridges with a 32kg kettlebell in each hand, circa 1937. Kitahata was taught kettlebell lifting by the Estonian strongman/wrestler/boxer Jan Kentel who introduced kettlebell training to Japan in the early 1930’s.

Monsieur Grenier’s Bet

Posted on Thursday, May 30th, 2013 by John Wood
Sometime in early 1920, Monsieur Alard Grenier of Paris bet his friends 5000 francs that he could carry his 1000-pound automobile a distance of 100 feet balanced on his head. He is shown above just crossing the finish line as his friends rush to relieve him of the car. The man certainly earned his payment. Talk about neck strength!
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2021 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 © 2005-2021 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.

Chiezel: The Man Who Walks On His Head

Posted on Monday, December 10th, 2012 by John Wood

Chiezel - The Man Who Walks On His Head

Adrian Chiezel, from Milwaukee, Wisconsin developed the unusual talent of being able to “hop” long distances on his head. He then did what anyone with such an unusual talent would do; he ran off and joined the circus.
In his act, “Chiezel: The Man Who Walks On His Head” hopped up and down this platform as shown, which seems like a pretty amazing show of neck strength (and balance) if you ask me.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2021 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 © 2005-2021 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 Human Vise: Bat Break Over Head

Posted on Wednesday, November 21st, 2012 by John Wood

The Human Vise!

Yes, that’s a genuine Louisville Slugger. Do NOT try this one at home! Pat “The Human Vise” Povilaitis is a trained professional, plus he is a little crazy which helps with feats like this. Needless to say, extreme levels of neck strength are also a must.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2021 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 © 2005-2021 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 Amazing Samson ~ Girder Lifting

Posted on Wednesday, September 19th, 2012 by John Wood

The Amazing Samson Girder Lift!

Here’s a Human Chain” feat of a whole different sort. That’s “The Amazing Samson” Alexander Zass suspended in mid-air while also lifting a 500-pound iron girder in his teeth. That’s a pretty awesome feat no matter how you slice it, one that we have never seen equaled before or since.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2021 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 © 2005-2021 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 Atlas

Posted on Wednesday, August 8th, 2012 by John Wood
The Mighty Atlas - Anvil Neck Strength
You’ve probably seen the old feat of strength where a strongman puts an anvil or a large stone slab on his chest and lets someone hit it with a sledge hammer… but I guarantee you haven’t seen this feat before though, — “The Mighty Atlas,” Morris Shapiro, a professional wrestler from Brooklyn, New York, teeth-lifting an anvil while someone else whacks said anvil with a sledge hammer.

Now that’s impressive!

The Mighty Atlas often demonstrated feats of strength before his matches, bending iron bars, snapping chains, ripping phone books etc. He learned the secrets of strength from his father who was a strongman in the Russian Circus in Minsk.

Great Beckett “The Five-Plank Marvel”

Posted on Thursday, April 5th, 2012 by John Wood

The Great Beckett: The Five-Plank Marvel

We specialize in bringing you content that you won’t find anywhere else, and here’s a great example: pictured above you’ll find Great Beckett “The Five-Plank Marvel.” How did he get this nickname? His act consisted of hammering a large nail through (count’em) five thick wooden planks… then pulling out the nail with his teeth. Needless to say, the strength of neck, jaw, gums and teeth required for this performance is prodigious.
All Contents, Including Images and Text, Copyright © 2005-2021 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 © 2005-2021 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 Neck Helmet

Posted on Monday, March 19th, 2012 by John Wood

The Neck Helmet

If you want to look strong (not to mention also be strong) then you had better train your neck. This fellow, a football player at the University of Tennessee-Martin, named Hunter Carter had some help from Mother Nature in that department but he also did quite a bit of work with a Neck Helmet shown here. You’ll find him featured in the July, 1976 issue of Muscular Development Magazine in an article on neck training by Carl H. Giles.

Speaking from experience, a neck helmet trains the head and neck muscles in a unique manner and is an excellent choice though it is not without its disadvantages. To build the strongest possible neck a variety of equipment and techniques can and should be used, including plate-loaded neck machines, manual resistance, neck straps, jaw and teeth lifting, isometrics, and head stands (this list is by no means exhaustive). Keep in mind that building the strength and size of the neck is like developing any other muscle group, incorporate the overload principle, train progressively and recover properly and your collar size will inevitably increase.