Ron Tyrrell - Index by Author


Please "Like Us" on Facebook and help support our website.  We are working hard behind the scenes to bring you interesting historical archives and photos each month for your enjoyment.

Author's Bio

Ron Tyrrell

Ron Tyrrell is a Senior Contributing Editor for our website. 

Over the years Ron has written for a wide variety of Physical Culture magazines and sports journals.  Some of his prolific work is seen below.   We invite you to visit our About section to view a fascinating look at Ron Tyrrell's life and how he became first interested in Physical Culture. 


alan p. mead, "the living anatomical chart"

Alan P. Mead, "The Living Anatomical Chart"

Contributed by Author - Nov. 2015
View Now
“To the physical culture followers, Mead's muscle posing was just as much one of the sights of London as Westminster Abbey.  Never have I seen such a harmonious and graceful torso, yet the awe-inspiring evidence of tremendous muscular power.  If he had lived in ancient Greece, dozens of statues would have been made of him by sculptors, glad to have found a model worthy of their supreme art.” - J. Paul Getty.  Thirty years after Mr. Getty wrote this article, I acquired a copy of the magazine and found it very inspirational, and immediately added Mead to my personal “hall of fame”.- Ron Tyrrell  
Apollo - the Scottish Hercules

Apollo, the Scottish Hercules

Contributed by Author - Aug. 2015
View Now
"By the time William Bankier (better known to the world as Apollo, the Scottish Hercules) died in 1949, he had been a much-respected figure in the strength and wrestling world for more than sixty years.  Since his passing, very little has been written about this amazing man, and as a long-time admirer of Bankier’s great strength and agility, I feel that it is time to have another look at his life and achievements.” - Ron Tyrrell

Adrian P. Schmidt, A Triumph for Physical Culture by Ron Tyrrell

Contributed by Author
View Now 
"Adrian Peter Schmidt was born in the French region of Alsace-Lorraine in early March, 1872.  He was an outstanding example of how the physical culture way of life can achieve remarkable results, even despite having been born with below average physical gifts.  At the age of fifteen, he contracted typhoid fever, which left his frail physique extremely thin.  Although now in a poor state of health, Schmidt did have a gift for drawing and painting, and his talents led him to become an art student.  In his classes, he was often called upon to draw the classical muscular male physiques of Greek and Italian statues, and this led him to wonder whether he could improve his own poor physical condition.." - Ron Tyrrell

Jim Bradford, Gentleman Strongman by Ron Tyrrell

Jim BradborkAug. 2016
Contributed by Author
View Now
"As we live in an age when winning is everything, I am reminded of one of my favourite strength athletes of the 1950's, who never won an Olympic or World title, and yet is regarded by many strength historians as one of the greatest natural strongmen of all time.  His name was James Edward Bradford, known to his friends and fans as Jim Bradford. Jim won Silver Medals in three World Championships, 1951, 1954 and 1959, as well as two Silver Medals in the 1952 and 1960 Olympic Games, but there is much more than this to his story.  He was a steroid-free, self-trained strongman, scholar, chorister, and true gentleman, and like a throwback to the times when strength and power prevailed." -Ron Tyrrell

Katie Sandwina by Ron Tyrrell

Katie Sandwina by Ron Tyrrell Contributed by Author
View Now  
"Katie Sandwina was born Catherine Brumbach, on the 6th of May, 1884, in the back of a travelling circus wagon in Vienna, Austria, to Philippe and Johanna, both descended from a long line of circus families who specialized in strength and agility Acts.  Philippe was a giant of a man, 6'6" and 260 lbs., with a 56" chest, and famed for his great strength and enormously large and powerful hands - it was said that he could pass a half dollar coin through his wedding ring.  He merits high praise in Willoughby's book, "The Super Athletes", for his feats of strength. 

Mother Johanna was 6 ft. tall, weighing about 200 lbs., and in between giving birth to fourteen (some say sixteen) children, she was an all round circus performer.  Uncle Xavier was known as The Bavarian Hercules."

Marvelous Max - The Story of Maxick by Ron Tyrrell

Marvelous Max - The Story of Maxick by Ron Tyrrell Published in the Physical Culture Journal April, 2000 - No. 29 
View Now  "Some 45 years ago, I was introduced to the world of the old time strength athletes, and although I can marvel at the modern supermen, the strength athletes of yesteryear still hold the most interest for me, and none more so than Max Sick, better known to the world as Maxick.  From a sickly beginning, he became a great weightlifter, muscle control artist, gymnast., Herculean hand-balancer, music hall artist, artists' model, famous author, and co-founder, with Monte Saldo, of one of the world's most successful postal physical culture courses, as well as acquiring quite a reputation as an explorer." - Physical Culture Journal

Monohar Aich - an Endearing and Enduring ambassador for physical culture by Ron Tyrrell

Monohar Aich - an Endearing and Enduring ambassador for physical culture by Ron Tyrrell View Now  

"On March 17 March 2012, friends and family gathered at the home of the legendary strongman and bodybuilder Monohar Aich, to celebrate his one hundredth birthday, and tributes were paid to him by strength athletes and physical culturists from all parts of the World.  What better time for me to reflect on his amazing life and achievements in many fields of physical endeavour. 

Monohar was born in a small village in the Comilla District, once part of British India but now part of Bangladesh.  When he began his training at the age of fifteen, he was 4 ft. 6 ins. in height and weighed 98 lbs.  He used a variation of the method of training that Indian wrestlers have used for centuries, based on Dhunds and Baithiks, consisting of various forms of press-ups and bodyweight squats." 

Monte Saldo - The Sculptor's Dream by Ron Tyrrell

William BankierPart Two of "The Greatest of Trainers" by Ron Tyrrell -see below
Published in 2001/2002

Contributed by Author
View Now  
"Sculptor's Dream marked the end of Monte's stage career - he wanted to do other things, but what of brother Frank? Court Saldo's 1950 memoir of his uncle gives the best account - "Frank forsook the footlights and strongman sphere after serving in World War I, and proving that he had brains as well as brawn, became a lecturer on physical education at the University of London." - Ron Tyrrell

Monte Saldo "The Greatest of Trainers" by Ron Tyrrell

Monte Saldo "The Greatest of Trainers" by Ron Tyrrell Part One
Contributed by Author

View Now  
"Alfred Montague Woollaston, better known to the world by his stage name of Monte Saldo, was born in 1879 in Highgate, London, England, the son of Frederick Woollaston, a shoe manufacturer who was also a much respected Methodist preacher and faith healer. The Woollastons have always been known for their good works, which seems to be a way of life dating back to an ancestor Sir John Woollaston, a philanthropist who provided the finance to build the almshouses in Highgate's Southwood Lane. Young Monte developed a keen interest in strength athletics at an early age and was greatly encouraged, in this by his parents and his uncle, a police inspector." - Ron Tyrrell

Pioneers in Remedial Therapy by Ron Tyrrell

Contributed by Author
View Now 
"It was early November, 2008, when the British nation was preparing to mark the ninetieth anniversary of the ending of the First World War, alongside the annual services of the Cenotaphs in Whitehall, London, and other locations, when we all remember the men and women who have made the supreme sacrifice in all battles since 1914 and I was moved to reflect on another battle fought by those people who returned form various conflicts with their health wrecked.  The following tells the story of a number of remarkable men, and the trainers, who guided them back to a fulfilling life."  - Ron Tyrrell 

Professor Joseph Szalay-Forgotten Great.. by ron tyrrell

Professor Joseph SzalayView Now
Contributed by Author

"Nature does not provide everyone with the type of mind that has a determination which, despite all setbacks, will enable them to succeed in their chosen ambitions.  In the history of strength and physical culture, just such a person was Joseph Szalay, whose name is rarely mentioned today, but who, in the period between the last quarter of the nineteenth century and the start of World War One, was known in the strength world as the True Father of British Weightlifting and Strandpulling."


Random Memories of Court Saldo (F.H.C. Woollaston) by Ron Tyrrell

Random Memories of Court Saldo by Ron TyrrellJan. 2015
Contributed by Author
View Now
"Gil Waldron suggested that I should put on record my memories of the late Court Saldo, and this is a most enjoyable task for me, as it enables me to reflect back to the year 1953 when, as a rather delicate young lad, I took up physical culture in an effort to get a little healthier and stronger, and to achieve at least a modest showing in athletics.  Like many other readers of Health & Strength magazine, I came across the Maxalding advertisement (usually on the back page), with a photograph of Court often included, surrounded by photographs of his successful pupils." - Ron Tyrrell 

The 75th Anniversary of the Dunkirk Evacuation

BobTo mark the 75th Anniversary of the Dunkirk Evacuation, Contributing Author & Historian, Ron Tyrrell presents an interesting look at two British physical culture enthusiasts who played a role in the Dunkirk story. 

We hope you will enjoy  "A Story of Two Dunkirk Veterans, Bob Iverson and Bob Jones" by Ron Tyrrell. 

View Now


The abbreviated workout by ron tyrrell

The Abbreviated Workout by Ron Tyrrell"A Training Aid for the Working Man"
Dec. 2016, Contributed by Author
View Now
"The Abbreviated Workout has proved to be the way forward for many a working man finding himself with little time to train, or perhaps too little energy for regular training on a full programme.  Fortunately, this problem has been addressed over the last 100 years by a number of wonderfully far sighted men such as Mark Berry, Joseph Curtis Hise and Peary Rader, to name just three.  They all made excellent progress in their personal training, as did many of their pupils, and today we find that Pavel Tsatsouline, Russian strength and conditioning trainer and great admirer of the old-time strength teachers, advocates an abbreviated workout as a result producing way of making progress in strength training."-Ron Tyrrell 

The Multi-Talented Thomas Inch by ron tyrrell

Thomas Inch

Contributed by Author - Jul. 2015
View Now
"In recent years, there has been a considerable renewal of interest in Thomas Inch and the heaviest of his thick-handled “challenge” dumbbells, so I have updated my article, first published in June 2002, and added more pictures, together with recently researched information.    It all began some 60 years ago, when I first began to take a keen interest in this multi-talented man.  Knowing that I wished to learn all I could about the Bent Press, Court Saldo lent me a book written by his father Monte, containing valuable advice on Bent Press technique, and he also suggested that I should write to “Tommy” Inch, as he was “ of the all-time greats at the Bent Press lift”. - Ron Tyrrell
The story behind the picture -  maxick and fred storbeck

The Story Behind the Picture by Ron Tyrrell

Published in Strandpuller magazine
Reproduced courtesy of Jim Bartlett, President, I.S.S.P.A.   
Contributed by Author
View Now
The story behind the accompanying picture began in the year 1900 when the South African, Tromp Van Diggelen, a keen physical culturist and a pioneer in the art of muscle control, travelled to Vienna to demonstrate his skills for the famous Nerve Specialist, Krafft-Ebing.  This meeting convinced Van Diggelen to further perfect his skill in this branch of physical culture." - Ron Tyrrell
Wonderful Walker, The story of ron walker by Ron Tyrrell

Wonderful Walker, The Ron Walker StoryPublished in 2002
Contributed by Author

View Now  

"As I read the words, "His Deeds Liveth Forever" on a photograph of the Ron Walker Memorial Trophy, my mind went back to a time some 46 years ago when I first heard his name during "snap" (miners' meal break) down a mine in the heart of the now defunct Kent Coalfield in the South East of England. A tough old mining instructor who was putting us through our basic training in preparation for a career in mining engineering, had learned of my interest in strength athletes: "I understand you are interested in the strong man stuff", he said in his powerful Yorkshire voice. "Well, I'll tell you this, one of the best was Ron Walker."


Developed by Robert Web Studio