Suits, Boots and Brutes: The History of Powerlifting Gear

Early this month I had the pleasure (?) of helping a friend of mine at his local powerlifting meet. Over the months he had squatted, benched and deadlifted with a remarkable intensity and focus. When the time came for the big day, I was honoured that he asked me to come along. Admittedly, I didn't... Continue Reading →

1903 and the birth of American Bodybuilding

After three years of pumping up, slimming down and posing, Britain, and the world was treated to the first ever bodybuilding competition in 1901. Hosted by the legendary Eugen Sandow, the 'Great Competition' as it was known claimed to have found the most perfect specimens alive. Unsurprisingly it wasn't long before other nations, notably America, began to hold their own... Continue Reading →

Are you Stronger than a Gorilla?

Just how strong can a gorilla be? After watching the latest iteration of King Kong over the weekend, the answer seems obvious. They're very strong. As in smash anything in their way strong. Not the most scientific of answers but hey, it works for me. Luckily not everyone is as lazy as my good self.... Continue Reading →

The History of the Burpee

An exercise loved and loathed across classrooms, the Burpee can be found in P.E. classes, conditioning circuits and anywhere where trainees are searching to shed pounds and increase definition. As simple as it is difficult, the exercise is often engaged in with relative unenthusiasm. In fact, I have yet to meet anyone who genuinely enjoys... Continue Reading →

The History of American Powerlifting

Perhaps the most popular form of training for modern gym goers, powerlifting is nevertheless a relatively recent phenomena. Indeed, while bodybuilding and Olympic Weightlifting date to the start of the twentieth-century, it was not until the 1960s that the art of lifting incredibly heavy things was formally recognised. Today's article thus looks at the birth... Continue Reading →

Do you Measure Up?

One of the most popular physical culturists of the entire twentieth-century, there is no denying the impact Charles Atlas had on the muscle making industry. Full of vigour, advice and the occasional insult, Atlas challenged his 'students' to improve their physique as much as possible. The yardstick for their success? None other than Atlas's own... Continue Reading →

The History of Peanut Butter

One of the few things to unite meat-eaters, vegetarians and even vegans, peanut butter is perhaps the great leveller of the fitness industry. High in calories, fat and protein, the delicious substance has been a go to option for muscle fanatics over the past century. Some use it as a spread whereas others, myself included... Continue Reading →

Weightlifting at the 1904 Olympics

It was the first time that the Olympic Games were held outside of Europe and the first time they were held in an English speaking country. It was heralded as a monumental step in the internationalisation of the Olympic spirit and it was prompted as such. Unfortunately, the reality of the 1904 St. Louis Olympics proved to... Continue Reading →

The History of the Smith Machine

Ah yes, the dreaded Smith Machine. Criticised for its unnatural movements, failure to fully tax the muscles and its generally unappealing design. Who invented the Smith Machine? Why did they do it and how did it become so popular? These are some of the questions answered in today's blogpost on the history of the Smith Machine!... Continue Reading →

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