Anton Gietl was a German weightlifter who won the Gold in the 1937 German championships and, later that year, the Bronze medal at the World Weightlifting Championship in the light heavyweight class. Gietl placed in the top five of the German weightlifting championships eight times in 1929 through 1949 ~ a pretty impressive feat in itself. Gietl’s specialty was the one-arm snatch, setting a world mark with 90 kg in 1933 (notably with his left arm.)
Phil Caira was one of Scotland’s greatest weightlifters. Here he is with a 265 lb. snatch at the 1958 Commonwealth Games, where he took first in the light-heavyweight class, coincidentally. Caira was know for his extremely “low” style. Caira also won the light-heavy class at the 1962 Commonwealth Games as well.
A look at the great Wilbur Miller, deadlifting 605 and making it look easy, circa 1963. Miller reported that the back strength developed through deadlifting helped his Olympic lifting totals considerably ~ which is a pretty radical concept these days. It should also be noted that Miller totaled over 1000 pounds in the three Olympic lifts in only his seventh lifting meet so there just may be something to it.
How outstanding is this picture? Shown here is Pete George’s final press of 122.5 kg at the 1956 Melbourne Olympic game… enough to put him in the lead, at least temporarily. George had to settle for silver though as a few minutes later he was overtaken by Fyodor Bogdanovsky of the Soviet Union who eventually took the gold with a 420 kg total (75kg weight class.) If you look very closely, you can see Bob Hoffman in the crowd.
A look at the medal platform for the 1956 Olympic Weightlifting Bantamweight class: American lifter Chuck Vinci took gold (with a 342.5 kg total ~ an Olympic record), Vladimir Stogov from the Soviet Union took the silver medal (with a 337.5 kg total) and Mahmoud Namdjou of Iran, took the bronze (with a 332.5 kg total).
A classic shot of Ike Berger cleaning and jerking 325 pounds to set the world record and win the Gold Medal in the featherweight class at the 1958 Senior World Weightlifting Championships (held in Stockholm, Sweden.) Berger was known for his flawless technique in all three lifts.
Tommy Kono graces the cover of the August, 1955 issue of Strength and Health magazine. Just a few months later, in October of 1955, Tommy would go on to take the Gold medal in the light-heavyweight (82.5 kg) class at the World Championships held in in Munich, West Germany. Kono’s winning total was 435 kg, and consisted of a 142.5 kg press, a 127.5 kg snatch and a 165 kg clean and jerk.
Weightlifting was changed forever in a two-car garage gym in Akron, Ohio. It was there, at the American College of Modern
Weight Lifting (ACMWL) that Lawrence “Larry” Barnholth essentially invented the “squat” style of snatching — a technique which became the standard, and which has gone on to help lifters who used it to set hundreds of National and World Records since then. In 1950, Barnholth, along with his top student Pete George, put together this nifty course “Secrets of the Squat Snatch” which outlined the necessary training for learning the method. This booklet is incredibly rare since only a limited number of copies were printed.