Stan Stanczyk

Posted on Wednesday, July 10th, 2013 by John Wood

Stan Stanczyk

The great Olympic weightlifter Stan Stanczyk was the first man to win three successive World titles in three different weight classes. Lifting for the York Barbell Club, he won five in all. He also won six Senior National titles, a Gold Medal at the 1948 Summer Olympics in London, England, a Gold at the 1951 Pan-American Games and a Silver Medal at the 1952 Helsinki Games.

Stanczyk set eight word records during his lifting career. He was also a fairly good bodybuilder, placing very respectably in the few contests he entered.

Hercule Elsener ~ Chain Breaking Champion of the World

Posted on Tuesday, September 18th, 2012 by John Wood

Hercule Elsener ~ Chain Breaking Champion of the World

Francois ‘Hercule’ Elsener, of Roubaix, France was the Chain Breaking World Champion in 1903. Elsener could break chains with ease in every conceivable manner but his specialty was to break them around his chest and bicep.
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.

Grigori Novak

Posted on Tuesday, March 20th, 2012 by John Wood

Grigori Novak - Russian Weightlifter

Known as “The Ukranian Hercules,” Grigori Novak was the greatest weightlifter of his era. He stood only 5’3″ but set 111 Soviet records and 62 World records throughout his career. On October, 19th, 1946 at the World Championships, held at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris, France, Novak totaled 425 kg (935 pounds) in the light-heavyweight class to become the first Soviet weightlifting world champion. Shown above is the completion of Novak’s winning snatch of 130 kg (286 pounds).
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.

Paul Pons

Posted on Friday, February 24th, 2012 by John Wood

Paul Pons

Paul Pons won what is recognized as the very first wrestling world championship in 1898. Pons would go on to win several more world championships in 1899, 1900, 1902, 1903, 1904 and 1910. Like most wrestlers of the day, Pons was also a strongman, and, as a matter of fact, Apollon’s training partner. Though Pons put most of his focus toward his wrestling, he did accomplish several notable strength feats, among them briefly holding the world record in the “Two Hands Anyhow” with a lift of 129 kg. For most of his life, Pons ran a wrestling and physical training gymnasium in Paris where he, Apollon, Batta and many other great French strength athletes trained.
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.

Yuri Vlasov

Posted on Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011 by John Wood

Soviet Weightlifting Champion Yuri Vlasov in his training hall with a Russian Olympic Set

The great Soviet lifter Yuri Vlasov was a Gold Medal winner at the 1960 Rome Olympics, a four-time Senior World Champion (1959, 1961-1963) and won six consecutive Senior European Championships (1959-1964). Vlasov set 34 World records over the course of his career. Also of note is the truly excellent Russian Olympic weight set at his feet… They sure don’t make ’em like that any more (both weight set AND lifter.)
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.

Doug Hepburn

Posted on Wednesday, October 12th, 2011 by John Wood

Doug Hepburn was born in Vancouver B.C. on September 16th, 1927. He was of average height and build and took up weight lifting to bulk up. Soon it became very apparent that Doug wasn’t so average after all…Although Hepburn had a slight handicap (a club foot) that did not stop him from becoming one of the most powerful men in history. Hepburn became a Senior World Champion in 1953 and set eight World Records during his career.

Here’s a look at his best lifts:

Right Hand Military Press: 175 lbs.
Two Hands Press (Off Rack): 440 lbs.
Behind Neck Press : 350 lbs.
Two Hands Curl: 260 lbs.
Bench Press: 580 lbs.
Jerk-Press (Off Rack): 500lbs.
Two Hands Snatch: 297-1/2 lbs.
Two Hands Clean & Press: 381 lbs.
Squat: 760 lbs.
Two Hands Deadlift: lbs.

The Russian Hercules: Ivan Poddubny

Posted on Friday, September 2nd, 2011 by John Wood

Ivan Poddubny

Ivan Poddubny was one of the greatest of the Russian Strongman /Wrestlers (of which there were many). He was born in a small village and worked hard jobs even from a young age.
After some training, he joined the Russian circus, performing feats of strength and wrestling all comers. The sash he is wearing in this picture is most likely from the 1908 World Championship, which he won by defeating his friend Ivan Zaikin. This was his fifth World Championship title. Even to this day, Poddubny is still a well-known sports hero in Russia and several big wrestling tournaments bare his name.
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.