The Longest Running & Most Respected UK Course

This vintage British course ran from 1909 until the late 70s.Using resistance isometrics it specialised in Muscle Control methods.

Click on the image to take you to the Maxalding Website.

Download as PDF

Mighty Men of Old

The Best Place to Start - being Biographies and Pictures of famous Strongmen of Old - Some you will have heard of - and some you may not.

Contributed by
Gil Waldron

The Ever Changing Face of Health & Strength

Health & Strength is the longest continually running PC magazine in the world - having started in 1892

This 4 part article from sometime in the 1970 is by noted historian David Gentle and traces the
history of the magazine

Copyright © David Gentle

Eugen Sandow

Takes you directly to the Sandow section of this website.

Katie Sandwina
(1884 - 1952)

The story of the famous strongwoman
by Ron Tyrrell

Download as PDF

The Indian Club Exercise
by Sim D. Kehoe

Download as PDF

Butler's System of
Physical Training -
The Lifting Cure

An original, scientific application of motion or mechanical action to physical culture and the cure of disease

by David P. Butler
From the American Library of Congress

Download as PDF

Professor Joseph Szalay
A Forgotten 'Great' of the Iron Game

an exclusive article written for the SandowPlus Website
by Ron Tyrrell

Download as PDF

Health & Strength
or Practical Athletics
for Busy People

Alex Whitely - 1891
Inventor of the
Whitely Exerciser

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

Louis Cyr
1863 - 1912

Legendary Canadian Strongman

'The Strongest Man That Ever Lived'
by George F. Jowett

Anderson's Physical Education

Published in 1897 to promote Anderson's Exerciser which bears a remarkable resemblance to that of Sandow's and Whitely's.

Contributed by Gordon Anderson

Home Gymnastics by Professor Hoffman

Published in 1899

Contributed by Jim Bartlett

William Bankier
Apollo -The Scottish Hercules

Partner of Monte Saldo & author of 'Ideal Physical Culture' written in 1900

Full book plus biography by Ron Tyrrell

Adrian Peter Schmidt
1872 - 1944

Noted early Physical Culturalist,
Author & Strongman


Alois P. Swoboda

One of the leading (and now almost forgotten) Physical Culturalists in the turn-of the-century America

Much here including a 1902 course and many promotional booklets.


Bernarr Macfadden

Often described as 'The Father of Physical Culture'

A comprehensive section with books (including Muscular Power & Beauty) and other pictorial material.

Al Treloar

Treloar's Science of Muscular Development

A Text book of Physical Development.

Modern Physical Culture by C. Lang Neil

Extremely rare book published in London in 1904. Amongst other topics it examines Macfadden's, Sandow's, Apollo's and other systems.

Contributed by Gil Waldron

.Physical Culture by Means of Muscular Resistance & Breathing Exercises.
by Prof. Edward Ittmann

Contributed by Gordon Anderson

Thomas Inch

Articles about Inch and publications by him including
'A Manual of Physical Training
and much more.

Contributions by Gil Waldron, Gordon Anderson & John McEneany

Arthur Saxon
"The Iron Master"
& The Saxon Trio

The Development of Physical Power
1905 & more

Contributed by Gordon Anderson.

plus articles & photos about the Saxon Trio

My System

Lieut. J.P. Muller, of Denmark, wrote this book in 1904 - it became a world best seller, being translated into 24 languages.

Also on site are 2 of his follow-on books.

Contributed by
Gil Waldron

Adolph E.Nordquest
(The Young Sandow)

Athlete, Strongman & author of 1906 rare book 'Strength & Health'

Staff-Sergt. Moss

Ex-British Army Gymnastics instructor and Bodybuilding competitor from the early 1900s.


Sanford Bennett
The Man Who Grew Young at 70

Author of
'Exercising in Bed' (1907)
'Old Age, Its Cause & Prevention (1912)

Physical Culture
by J.J. Miller

Published in Scotland
circa 1908.

Contributed by Gil Waldron

50 Exercises for Health & Strength

Very early 'Health & Strength' Magazine publication circa 1908

Contributed by Gil Waldron

Download as PDF

Milo Body Building & Muscle Developing Exercises

written by Alan Calvert in 1911 and distributed with Milo Barbells

Contributed by Gordon Anderson

Spalding's Muscle Building

by Luther Gulick, M.D.
(1865 - 1918)

Leading light in the foundation of the YMCA and pioneer in development of Basketball

Bobby Pandour

Always in the shadow of Sandow, Pandour had a remarkable physique.

He toured American Vaudeville from 1907 to 1915 and then retired.

Martin 'Farmer' Burns

Burns wrote one of the most famous and sought after courses on Wrestling & Physical Culture in 1912

Contributed by Gordon Anderson


Prof. Attila's
Five Pound
Dumb-Bell Exercises

Published in 1913

Download as PDF

Manual of Physical Training - United States Army - 1914

The War Dept.'s official training book covering a comprehensive range of exercises

Wills's Cigarette Cards
Physical Culture

UK 1914

Earle E. Liederman

Liederman had a highly successful course during the 20s and claimed several famous pupils.

In later years he became editor of Muscle Power Magazine


George Hackenschmidt
(The Russian Lion)

Illustrated biography by David Gentle
The Way to Live

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

Muscle Flexing
by Antone Matysek

This American course is vintage 1921.

Zishe 'Siegmund' Breitbart

Died in 1925 as a result of an accident.

Had a very successful Mail Order Body-building course that continued after his death.

Otto Arco

For a long time a favourite poser, muscle controller and hand-balancer.

From 1925 a series of articles from 'Body Molding' magazine including a 4 part series on Muscle Control written in conjunction with Alan Calvert.

Contributed by
Gay W. Ng.


The Mighty Young Apollon
(J.C. Tolson)

Famed Yorkshire Strongman & Course Writer who started his career in 1925

Main Contributions by Warren Pember

Barbell Exercises
by Chit Tun

Burmese by birth but living in Calcutta, Chit Tun was a noted Indian Muscle Controller around the turn of the last century.

Contributed by
Vinaya Kumar

W.A. Pullum

Legendary record breaker, trainer, writer and owner of the world-famous Camberwell Club.

This section contains articles by and about him plus two rare books written by him.

Rudolph Valentino tells 'How You Can Keep Fit'

A Macfadden publication from 1923

Contributed by
Jim Lovelace


Alexander Zass - The Amazing Samson

Legendary and innovative Polish born strongman who lived in the UK from 1924.

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

Muscle Building
& Physical Culture

by George F. Jowett

American 1927 - using Isometrics and Weights.

and the 'Molding' series
from 1932.

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

Siegmund Klein

Re-opened Prof. Louis Atilla's Gym in New York in 1927 and ran a successful Bodybuilding course for many years.

A much photographed and greatly admired strongman

The Standwell Course

British 1928 version.

Contributed by Harry Rothman

The Stebbing 4-in-1 Super Course

London 1929.

Contributed by Gil Waldron

Edward Aston

Noted British Champion Weightlifter and one-time holder of 'Britain's Strongest Man' award.

The Danks System of Physical Culture

Expander based - this course ran for many years, possibly from the 1900s.

Contributed by
Ron Tyrrell

Muscle Control & Barbell Exercise
by Ghosh & Sen Gupta

A rare, well illustrated book published in Calcutta in 1930.

Contributed by
Vinaya Kumar

from the
Lionel Strongfort Institute of America
'The World's Foremost Physical Culture & Health Correspondence School'

Contributed by Gordon Anderson

George Walsh

Modestly described as 'The World's Greatest Bodybuilder'

Articles & Adverts by Walsh plus
'Body Bulk'
his 1930s Postal Course.

Contributed by
Pete Luckin

Don Athaldo

Australia's leading Strongman of the 20s and on. His bodybuilding method 'Athalding' is detailed in this 1930's
80 page brochure.
Also now included are lessons 1,2 & 3 of the Athalding Course

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson
John Digby &
Noel Flanigan

Bob Hoffman

In 1935 Bob Hoffman purchased the Milo Barbell Company. This then became the York Barbell Company - The rest is history.

Contributions by Gil Waldron, Gordon Anderson & Others

Tony Sansone

Progressive Home Physical Training Course
from the mid 30s.

Contributed by Gordon Anderson

Plus a comprehensive Photo-Gallery

Prof. K.V. Iyer

A collection of books by the most important name in Indian Bodybuilding in the 1930s.

Contributed by
Vinaya Kumar

Plus a Gallery of Photographs

Correct Posture
by Capt. Godfrey Rodrigues

'Discoverer & Originator of Scientific Bodybuilding'.

Oh, Really?

H. Broom

Extremely successful
UK Course seller in the mid 1930's

Strong Arms for
Men, Women & Children

by Prof. Anthony Barker

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

The Good Brothers
(Harry, Walter & Bill)

Contributed by
Gil Waldron

Noe's Graduated Xercisors

Roy H. Noe of Memphis, Tennessee sold these rubber exercisers and instructions by mail in the 30s and 40s.

Joe Bonomo
Building Body Power
(Muscle Tension System) - 1940,

The Power-Plus Cable Course - 1954
and much more
Contributed by
Gordon Anderson &
Dan Weston

plus extracts from his autobiography 'The Strongman' including the 'Golden Dozen' Body Conditioners

Download as PDF

Robert Kiphuth was Director of the Gymnasium and Asst. Professor of Physical Education at Yale University.

This book was written in 1942

Contributed by
Carl De Lorenzo

Ten Minutes a Day
A Keep Fit Manual
by James Evans

James Evans was British - and an early Maxalding pupil. This booklet was published in Canada in 1944.

Contributed by Gordon Anderson

Joe Weider

Trainer of Champions.

Bodybuilding changed forever after he came on the scene.

Contributed by
Gilbert Waldron

Ronald Walker

Renowned British Olympic weightlifter. He also marketed a mail order course in the 1940s

Contributed by Ron Tyrrell
& Gilbert Waldron

Scientific Bodyculture

A course from the mid 40s by Ian MacQueen. M.D., F.A.C.S., F.R.C.S.

Ian MacQueen is President of the Oscar Heidenstam Foundation

Body Building
by John Barrs

Published in 1948

John Barrs was PT adviser to B.A.W.L.A.

Contributed by
Ron Tyrrell

Download as PDF

The Woodward School of Physical Culture, Blackpool UK.

The Auto-Resista Course

Contributed by
Gay W. Ng

Also 'The Skill of Muscle Control' by Tom Woodward which includes poses by Tony Holland

Olympic Weight-Lifting & Body-Building for All
by Jim Halliday

Published in 1950

Contributed by
Gil Waldron

Physical Culture for Beginners - Without the Aid of Appliances
by F.J. MacDonald

Published circa 1950s
This Edition 1960

Contributed by
Daniel Lurie

Download as PDF

The Body Sculpture Club

Started in Surbiton, Surrey in the 1930s

3 Courses issued in the 1950s

Don Dorans

Highly respected
British Champion
& Trainer

Contributed by
David Gentle


Chas. T Trevor was a UK publisher of many PC books in the 50s both instructional and biographical (he wrote the first main biography on Sandow) and also ran a postal course

Hermann Goerner
(1861 - 1965)

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

plus magazine articles
contributed by
The American Powerlift Evolution Website

Written by
Ottley Coulter - noted bodybuilding historian

This booklet was published in 1952.

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson


Harry B. Paschall

Author of many fine books and articles on bodybuilding in the 50's and the creator of the cartoon character 'Bosco'

The International Federation of Physical Culture

London based around the 1950s and on. Headed by
George Walsh.

They ran both apparatus and non-apparatus courses

How To Keep Fit & Like It
by Arthur H. Steinhaus

Published 1957

Contributed by
Daniel Lurie

Download as PDF


That's Muscle Control
by Ed Jubinville

Contributed by Ron Tyrrell

The Bullworker

Introduced in 1963 and much maligned ever since.

It is now in its renaissance period as it becomes more and more recognised as a valuable aid to physical development.

Contributed by
Pete Luckin

The Reg Park System of Cable Training

Date unknown but presumed to be late 60s

Contributed by
Pete Luckin


Reg Park - Britain's Greatest
1952 mini biography

Bruce Tegner

Martial Arts Expert
and author of several
excellent books
Isometric Power

The Hercules II Course

from some time in the
late 60s/early 70s

Contributed by
Pete Luckin

Download as PDF

Download as PDF

Steve Reeves
He Knew What He Wanted & Got It

by Robert Kennedy
December 1970

Supplemental booklet with the Hercules II course

Contributed by
L. 'Doc' Ray

by Henry Wittenburg

1964 publication by an
Olympic Gold Medal Champion

Exercises for both Men & Women

Contributed by Jonathan Selby

Download as PDF


The guru behind Atlas, Macfadden, Hoffman
and many others

Contributed by
Gordon Anderson

Download as PDF

The Super Routine

Date unknown but presumed to be
mid to late 70s

Contributed by
Pete Luckin


Download as PDF

Tensile Contraction
Master Build

Author Unknown
Published in Canada

Contributed by Sax Hallam

Download as PDF

The Herk U. Lees Bodybuilding System
by Ernest F. Cottrell

A 5 part Mail Order course published in 1975

Contributed by
R. 'Doc' Roy

Download as PDF

How to Increase Your
Muscular Bulk & Strength

Authour unknown and published circa 1970s as a freebie in MuscleMag International

Contributed by
R. 'Doc' Roy

Download as PDF

Hepburn's Law
by John Myles & Doug Hepburn

Published in 1980 this rare book explains the legendary Strongman & Weightlifter's methods and exercises

Contributed by
R. 'Doc' Roy

Dan Lurie

Dan Lurie

New section including articles about Dan Lurie and including his Body-Building Course

Mike Marvel's
Dynaflex Course

From the early 1960 to the mid 1980s this course was advertised on the back of Marvel Comics in competition with the Charles Atlas course.


This vintage British course ran from 1909 until the late 70s.Using resistance isometrics it specialised in Muscle Control methods.

Click on the image to take you to the Maxalding Website.

And Finally - Still Going Strong into the 21st Century

Charles Atlas & Dynamic Tension

Possibly the most famous and certainly the most well loved and longest lasting course which started in 1922 and is still on sale today via the internet.


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