Kettlebells for ‘Different’ Development by Sig Klein

Posted on Wednesday, November 26th, 2014 by John Wood

I’ve seen it written that kettlebells were completely unknown in the US until the late 90’s but that’s not exactly true… I wouldn’t say that they were tremendously popular, but people have certainly known about kettlebells on these shores and trained with them for many years prior. Sig Klein was always big fan of kettlebells and discussed them often in his articles and courses. To give you one example, this article, “Kettlebells for ‘Different’ Development” appeared in Strength and Health magazine in the late 1950’s.

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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.

Sig Klein’s Seated Press Challenge

Posted on Monday, August 11th, 2014 by John Wood

Here’s another interesting challenge from Sig Klein: Ol’ Sig could — whilst seated in a sturdy chair — clean and press a 100 lb. barbell for ten repetitions, oh, did I mention there is a time limit of 30 seconds? This one will definitely put some shoulders on you.
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.

Sig Klein’s Leg Press Machine

Posted on Thursday, January 23rd, 2014 by John Wood

Sig Klein's Leg Press Machine

Sig Klein came up with this device, what could be called an early leg press machine. Though interesting, it was not practical since the resistance lessened by leverage as the legs straightened.
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.

Sig Klein’s Greatest Handbalancing Feat

Posted on Friday, January 3rd, 2014 by John Wood

Sig Klein's Greatest Handbalancing Feat

We’ve covered Sig Klein’s handbalancing feats before. Above you’ll find what ol’ Sig thought of as the ultimate handbalancing feat, or at least the one that he was most proud of. Not only could Sig hold a handstand on a freestanding globe barbell, he could roll the whole affair across the floor while doing so ~ That’s pretty awesome!
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.

Strongman Beer Stein

Posted on Monday, December 30th, 2013 by John Wood
Strongman Beer Stein
Much of weightlifting’s history can be traced back to taverns and beer halls so it was only natural that some “strength” themed steins were created way back when. The only “supplements” that many of the real oldtimers enjoyed were barley and hops. This one is pretty nifty because of the ringweight lid. It would also appear that it would be quite a workout drinking from this one when it was full of ale.

One can imagine the lifters in old, Old, OLD Vienna clinking a few of these together with a hearty “Kraft Heil!”(Hail to strength!) On the lid you’ll also find the 4-K motto: Kühn, Kernig, Kraftvoll, Kunstvoll (Daring, Robust, Powerful, Skillful).

Sig Klein was a big fan of steins like these, and his collection was housed on shelves around his gym. This one may have actually belonged to Sig at one point.

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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.

John Garan

Posted on Friday, November 29th, 2013 by John Wood
John Garan
John Garan began serious physical training after meeting the famous New York strongman Abe Boshes and went on to build one of the most incredible physique of all time.
At a height of 5’5″ and bodyweight of only 155 pounds Garan could easily squat with over 300 and was also an excellent wrestler. He regularly trained at Sig Klein’s Gym and was featured in “Klein’s Bell.” Garan is a perfect example of very impressive results, developed without supplements or growth drugs
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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.

Sig Klein on Kettlebells

Posted on Friday, November 29th, 2013 by John Wood

Sig Klein on Kettlebells

I have always found the kettlebell to be one of the most useful and fascinating pieces of weight training apparatus. It can be handled in so many diverse manners that its application in the field of body -building exercises is almost without limit. You will have to hunt for a long time to find a more versatile piece of training equipment. – Sig Klein
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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.

Sig Klein’s Hand Balancing

Posted on Thursday, February 28th, 2013 by John Wood
Sig Klein's Hand Balancing
The fact that Sig Klein has been mentioned so many times throughout this blog should tell you that he was a jack of all trades — and he most certainly was. Name a classic training discipline and ol’ Sig was a master: muscle control… kettlebell and barbell juggling… heavy weight lifting… posing … the bent press … the list goes on and on.

One of Sig’s absolute favorite types of training was hand balancing, and he mentioned it often as the way he trained in the days before he got his weight set. Sig felt that hand balancing was not just for show but was a fantastic way to build size and strength — a viewpoint that we certainly agree with. Sig also believed that regular hand balancing was a great way to improve the press …and the results speak for themselves.

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.

Sig Klein’s Press

Posted on Tuesday, February 12th, 2013 by John Wood

Sig Klein's Press

A Look at Sig Klein’s record military press: 229-1/4 lbs. at a bodyweight of 152 lbs. Keep in mind this was a true “press;” back straight, heels together, knees locked — not the “standing bench press” or “slump-press” style of later years. You won’t find many heavyweights these days who could duplicate such a weight in this style, so for a man of Sig’s size, this is a truly phenomenal feat.
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 William J. Herrmann Institute of Physical Culture

Posted on Wednesday, May 30th, 2012 by John Wood
Herrmann's Gym
William J. Herrmann was a very knowledgeable physical culturist who taugh and heavily influenced Alan Calvert (in fact, Calvert’s classic book “Super Strength” is dedicated to him.)

Herrmann’s gym, once located at 1325 Chestnut Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was one of the popular hangouts for many of the strength stars of the early 20th century, most notably Sig Klein and Milo Steinborn, who performed a number of strength feats there. Sandow trained at Herrmann’s place whenever he visited the US. At Hermann’s, classes were taught in boxing, wrestling, fencing, body-building, calisthenics, Indian Clubs, gymnastics and acrobatics.

This picture was taken in 1931 and shows Milo Steinborn getting in a quick workout on the newly added open-air section of the gym (used for hand ball and training in the fresh air and sun shine, among other pursuits.) Herrmann’s son (also named William) won the bronze medal in tumbling at the 1932 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.