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  1. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 2:32pm

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     Style: Bartitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    Your great-grandpappy's gym

    Looking at these antique pictures of gyms from the 19th century, I can't help but think that we've lost something over the past hundred-odd years.




  2. Fitz is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 2:37pm


     Style: Judo, Tomiki Aikido, ??

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    My great-grandpappy's gym was a farm.

    Gyms were for rich folks whose lives were insulated from hard work.

    That hasn't changed.
  3. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 2:48pm

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     Style: Bartitsu

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    True. Public gyms didn't really take off until after the Industrial Revolution, when a sizable chunk of the population found that they didn't need to do hard physical exercise in their daily lives.
  4. adouglasmhor is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 4:47pm


     Style: Les Mills Bodycombat™

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    Outdoors in Glasgow, It finally shut down when I was 17. I once saw a guy scrape the ice of a wooden bench before doing presses.
    Last edited by adouglasmhor; 2/17/2009 4:51pm at .
  5. Yojimbo1717 is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 4:53pm


     Style: Grappling & Lifting

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Not to mention people were actually, you know, doing legit. exercises instead of bullshit machines like the TOTAL GYM and the BOWFLEX.
  6. SBG-ape is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 4:55pm


     Style: Jiu-jitsu & HEMA

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I think the early gyms tended to be more gymnastic then the current treadmill filled versions.

    One of my favorite summaries of historical European fitness methods was a medieval text that stated young knights & soldiers stayed fit by running, swimming, tumbling, lifting & throwing stones, wrestling & fencing. Doesn't that sound like more fun then a "spinning" class?
  7. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 4:59pm

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     Style: Bartitsu

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    More old-school outdoor gyms:

    Note wrestlers in the center:







  8. DdlR is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 5:01pm

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     Style: Bartitsu

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by SBG-ape View Post
    I think the early gyms tended to be more gymnastic then the current treadmill filled versions.

    One of my favorite summaries of historical European fitness methods was a medieval text that stated young knights & soldiers stayed fit by running, swimming, tumbling, lifting & throwing stones, wrestling & fencing. Doesn't that sound like more fun then a "spinning" class?
    It does to me. That same philosophy of holistic, skill-based fitness extended right through to the early 20th century; the specializations of aerobics, weightlifting etc. are modern developments.

    In a typical gym around 1890 you could learn boxing, wrestling and several types of fencing; test your skill and courage on gymnastics equipment; swing Indian clubs and lift dumbbells and barbells, etc. And many "physical culturists" actually did all those things, rather than specializing in single sports or types of exercise.
    Last edited by DdlR; 2/17/2009 5:10pm at .
  9. Jack Rusher is offline
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    Posted On:
    2/17/2009 6:35pm


     Style: ti da shuai na

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    This thread reminds me of Galen's prescriptions in De Sanitate Tuenda:

    Strength
    1. Digging
    2. Dead Lift
    3. Farmer Walks
    4. Hill climbing
    5. Climbing a rope using hands and feet
    6. Hanging-onto a rope or beam for as long as possible
    7. Holding the arms straight out in front with fists closed
    8. Holding the arms straight up with fists closed
    9. Holding out the arms while a partner pulls them down
    10. ^^^ The last three also done with weights in hand
    11. Breaking loose from a wrestling waist-lock
    12. Holding onto a person trying to escape from the waist-lock
    13. Picking up a man and swinging him around
    14. Pummeling
    15. Hanging from another’s neck, attempting to drag him down
    16. Pull guard, try to apply a choke or neck crank (wrestling was a popular sport at the time)
    17. ^^^ The same from half-guard
    18. ^^^ The same from grapevine


    Speed
    1. Running
    2. Shadow-boxing
    3. Hitting punching bags
    4. Boxing
    5. Throwing and catching a small ball while running
    6. Running back and forth, reducing the length each time by a little until finished
    7. Something that sounds like a Hindu squat
    8. Rolling on the wrestling-ground rapidly (ukemi?)
    9. Rapidly changing places with people in a tightly packed group
    10. Jumping up and kicking both legs together backwards
    11. Kicking the legs forward alternately
    12. Move the arms up and down rapidly with open or closed fist, increasing in speed


    Explosiveness
    1. Digging rapidly
    2. Casting the discus
    3. Jumping repeatedly with no rest
    4. Throwing heavy spears and moving fast while wearing heavy armour
    5. Any of the Strength exercises executed rapidly


    General Fitness
    1. Walking
    2. Bending up and down repeatedly at the hips
    3. Dead Lift
    4. Holding up an object for a long time
    5. Full and loud breathing (?)
    6. Weighted windmills


    ... most of this is completely orthodox today.
    “Most people do not do, but take refuge in theory and talk, thinking that they will become good in this way” -- Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, II.4
  10. KO'd N DOA is offline

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    Posted On:
    2/23/2009 10:39am


     Style: Judo Sandbagger

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Really like the pictures...new to me. From what I gather, in Back then, people had large families (like 14 brothers) and they always were wrestling and fighting, outdoors, however Kicking was frowned somwhat frowned upon as unsportsmen like.
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