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 bodybuilding shows.
Within two years of Sandow’s ‘Great Competition’, the US was hosting its own bodybuilding show. Today we tell their story.
It’s a simple question but one loaded with controversy. Today most Internet forums are filled with heated arguments about whether the ‘mass monsters’ of today are helping or hurting the sport.
Rather than continue the common narrative that the 1990s and the Dorian Yates era was the dawn of the ‘Mass Monsters’, today’s post argues that bodybuilders and their forerunners have always taken their physiques to the extremes of their time. In other words, bodybuilders regardless of the decade, have always displayed bodies well beyond the reach of the common man.The bodybuilders of today who stand tall and wide are rather than damaging the sport, continuing the tradition of freakish bodily appearances.
After all, Bodybuilding has always judged physiques based on the best combination of size, shape, symmetry and conditioning. With this framework in mind, let’s examine the freaks of bodybuilding past.