It is said that bodybuilding dates all the way back to ancient Greece. It was only after the 19th century that bodybuilding was promoted by Eugene Sandow, known as “The Father of Modern Bodybuilding”. Not only was Sandow incredibly strong, it is said amongst bodybuilding circles he was the pioneer for the craze of physical aesthetics. Due to his high profile within the industry, Sandow capitalised on his dedication and built several businesses around bodybuilding equipment. Shortly after, Sandow then organised the first ever bodybuilding contest in September 1901 called the “Great Competition” it was a great success. Today the most prestigious bodybuilding competition held for bodybuilding is the Mr. Olympia.

Today millions of people all over the world enjoy the art of bodybuilding and fitness lifestyle, and for good reason. History has shown that the mental and physical benefits are tremendous. However this wasn't always the case, the history of body building goes back a long way but historically and not so long ago bodybuilding was considered something of an oddity.

The early heroes of the sport faced countless up-hill battles in their quest for size and strength. First of all, information about training was scarce. If you were lucky enough to find any, a great deal of it was either bogus or impractical.
Another big obstacle was body building training equiptment. Much of it was crude, at least by todays standards. The gyms were nowhere near the size of the modern weight palaces of today that so many of us are accustomed to, but that didn't matter, back in body building history time the brotherhood of iron was forged with the atitude that it was the basics of weight training that unlocked the iron warrior's true potential. Without the basics, one could never reach physical greatness.
Eugene Sandow and John Grimek were the original pioneers of our sport. Yet it was trailblazers like Steve Reeves, Reg Park and Bill Pearl who took the raw clay of basic weight training and sculpted and refined it into much of what we use in the gym today.
These legends have a wealth of knowledge that has lain dormant for far too long. Today, each and every body builder can benefit from the training and history of these trail blazing body builders.
For life's only limitations are the ones we make.

History of body building favourites.


To this day, many believe that Steve Reeves posessed the most beautiful physique of all time. It was Steve Reeve's physique that bridged the chasm between hardcore body building and pubic acceptance. he was tall ( 6'1" ), brawny ( 215 pounds of bone and grade-A muscle ) and almost ridiculously good-looking.
According to his body building history and contemporary, George Eiferman, Reeves could cause traffic accidents simply by sauntering along the street. Huge crowds used to follow him whenever he went for a walk on the beach. After all, it wasn't every day that this type of perfection went for a stroll!
During the 1950's and 60's, Steve Reeve parlayed his physical attributes into a highly lucrative film career. Films such as Morgan The Pirate, The last days of Pompeii and his Hercules films made him a superstar. He turned down the leading role in "A Fistful Of Dollars", which saw a young Clint Eastwood get his big chance in the movies.
His physique influenced everyone from Winston Churchill and James Dean to body builders such as Arnold Schwarzenegger, Park, Pearl, Larry Scott, Mike Mentzer, Lou Ferrrigno, Lee Haney and Porter Cottrell. Unquestionably one of the best body builders of all time, Steve Reeves had a physique that still inspires fans and competitors alike- some 40 years since he last stepped up on stage!
Steve Reeves died on May 1, 2000.

Steve Reeves Vital Statistics

Born - January 21, 1926 - died on May 1, 2000.
Birthplace - Glasgow, Montana
Height - 6'1"
Weight - 215
Hair - Brown
Eyes - Blue
Neck - 18 1/4"
Chest - 52"
Waist - 29"
Hips - 38"
Biceps - 18 1/4"
Forearm - 14 3/4"
Wrist - 7 1/4"
Thighs - 26"
Calf - 18 1/4"

Steve Reeves History of Body Building Awards

1946 - Mr. Pacific Coast
1947 - Mr. Western America
1947 - Mr. America (AAU)
1948 - Mr. World
1950 - Mr. Universe (NABBA)


Movie Highlights

Film debut - Jail Bait -- 1954
The musical Athena -- 1954
Hercules in 1957
Hercules Unchained in 1959.
The Thief of Baghdad (1960).
The Last Days of Pompeii (1960)


Bill Pearl

In 1953 a young man from Oregon burst on the body building scene, winning the Mr. America and Mr. Universe titles in the same year. He was Bill Pearl.

Pearl was born October 1st 1930. At an early age, he joined the U.S. Navy and became a wrestling champiopn(like his hero Euen Sandow) iInspired by Clancy Ross and John Grimek Bill Pearl went on to win the Mr Universe title four times, the last time weighing 237 pounds and at the age of41. In his final contest he downed Sergio Oliva, Reg Park and Frank Zae. His only defeat that year was by Jack Delinger, but he came back and won the Mr.USA title by downing his idol Clancy Ross.
Bill Pearl was a master in posing and he even incorporated a Sandow routine. He also served as the physical fitness consultant for an aerospace program. Pearl has always loved teaching and his knowledge could fill a stack of books. In fact, he's written a couple. Keys to the inner Universe and Getting Strong, they have become history of body building classics.

Bill Pearl History of Body Building Awards

1953 - Mr. America

1953- Mr. California

1953- Mr Southern California

1953-NABBA Mr. Universe

1956- Mr USA

1956- NABBA Pro Mr. Universe (Tall)

1961- NABBA Pro Mr. Universe

1967- NABBA Pro Mr. Universe

1971- NABBA Pro Mr. Universe

Bill Pearl
Born: 10/31/30
Height: 5'9"
Weight: 220 lbs.