Polish weightlifting team in training (Late 1970s)

Today we present some outstanding vintage documentary footage of Eastern European strength training, showing the Polish weightlifting team’s exercise regimen. During the Cold War era, Eastern European countries tended to dominate in international strength sports competitions. This video is a rare behind-the-scenes glimpse into their training methods. The video reel, posted on the “Goodfoot101” Youtube channel, appears to be from the late 1970s, as it includes footage from the 1977 World Weightlifting Championships in Stuttgart, Germany. While somewhat outside the particular era generally covered here at FOUNDATIONS OF IRON, this is still a great showcase of old-school strength training.

As seen in this vintage footage, training for Olympic-style lifting involves much more than simply practicing the Olympic lifts themselves. Continue reading

Tommy Kono performing winning Olympic lifts (1958)

In this video footage from the 1958 World Weightlifting Championships in Stockholm, Sweden, posted on the “John Phung” Youtube channel, Tommy Kono of Sacramento, CA, USA performed winning Olympic-style lifts including a world-record snatch of 133.5 kg (294.3 lbs), taking home the top prize in the middleweight division.

By this time, Kono had also established himself as a physique champion with one Mr. World and two Mr. Universe titles in addition to his weightlifting awards. Continue reading