Elwood Holbrook – Master of the Bent Press

Posted on Sunday, April 8th, 2018 by John Wood
Elwood Holbrook took 4th at the 1941 AAU Mr. America Contest AND took home the “Best Arms” award (He had also competed in the afternoon’s weightlifting contest where he finished 6th with a 715-pound total in the 165-pound class.)

While Holbrook was a very talented strength athlete and equally good at bodybuilding as well as weightlifting, his real gift was the bent press — he won the national Bent-Press Championship in a contest held by Sig Klein.

Holbrook was also one of the few men to bent press the famous Rolandow Dumbbell – a feat which he did on his first try and without a warmup. Here’s a shot of a 48-year old Elwood Holbrook bent-pressing 240 pounds — 75 pounds above his bodyweight. That unique dumbbell belonged to Paul Anderson.

Bob Harley

Posted on Friday, January 26th, 2018 by John Wood
Bob Harley, of Sig Klein’s Gym was one of the world’s greatest masters of the bent press. In fact, Bob Harley was the winner of the New York City Bent Press contest (put on by Sign Klein in 1940 — lifting in the 181 lb. class, Harley out bent-pressed the heavyweights (including John Davis) with a winning lift of 254 lbs. Harley was one of the few men to successfully bent-press the Rolandow Dumbbell.
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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.