Arnold and How He Made Bodybuilding and Weightlifting Mainstream
|When people think of bodybuilding one
name nearly instantly comes to mind; thats Arnold
Schwarzenegger. In many ways he nearly single handedly
built the entire fitness industry juggernaut that exists
today. His personality and charisma took bodybuilding and
even weightlifting and all other fitness pursuits out of
the shadows and into the mainstream. If there was no
Arnold, as Joe Weider put it the industry would have had
to have made one. From the 1977 film Pumping Iron
bodybuilding was made mainstream. That movie changed
American culture; muscles were cool; lifting was to be
encouraged, and fitness was a thing of health not just
narcissismm. This cultural change was further cemented
with movies like Conan the Barbarian, and the Terminator.
The 1980s was the decade of machismo and muscle. Arnold,
Sylvester Stallone and others made it that way. But
Arnold started it all. While Pumping Iron is what first
gave Arnold his recogniztion worldwide it was the
Terminator that really launched him on his movie career
path. In the Terminator Arnold plays a machine that does
what it is programmed to do. Using the body as a machine
in the movie with logic and efficiency is at the heart of
the fitness industry or at least the part that delivers
A world of young men wanted to look like Arnold and the action star they admired. They went to gyms they lifted at home they aspired to try to look like their ideal; Arnold. Boooks were written; magazines filled the newsstand and even tv shows like Bodyshaping and Flex Magazine workout filled the airways in the 90s. Womens fitness also emerged with books, videos, and related shows with people such as Jane Fonda, Kiana Tom, Carla Dunlap, and others arriving on the scene. Now you have fitness pageants, bodybuilding contests for women and men, power lifting, and strong man events. None of this would have probably emerged had it not been for Arnold.
Arnold was a master of one liners. His phrases such as the pump is better than cumming and I'll be back are legendary. There is a reason before many of his Mr Olympia wins they call him the one and only. He truly was one of a kind. Arnold even started a series of fitness events called the Arnold Classic originally and the Arnold Sports Festival today. Arnold upped the standard for what was expected of action stars. Today it is common for actors to begin gruelling muscle building routines before major action films are made. This was practically unheard of before Arnold. Ordinary people often attempt this sort of thing before beach season or summer vacation also. People know they can be better, Arnold is responsible for this sort of thinking. So in addition to transforming the fitness industry Arnold also transformed the movie industry. Also Arnold did help form the Planet Hollywood restaurant chain that drew attention to collecting celebrity items, and hollywood memorabilia such as wardrobe and props from movies. This is an area of interest I also follow and you can read more about it at my site Movieprop.com
Of course Arnold went on to be governor of California. Its hard not to mention that as well. The governator of the most powerful state in the United States is no small feat. This shows that lifting can inspire confidence to do anything you want in life. Today people remember arnold and pick up a dumbell for the first time trying to reach for their dreams no matter what they are. In many ways Arnold has done more to further the Plato Ideal of a strong body leading to a stong mind than any other individual in the last century. Bodybuilding and weightlifting is about more than just picking heavy stuff up and setting it down. Its about trying to be better. Arnold showed the world that. For that the world owes Arnold a great debt of grattitude.
Arnold Pages at Movieprop.com - in depth analysis of the Terminator movies, props from Arnolds movies, and related Arnold movie reviews, and links.
Arnold Schwarzenegger at Imdb - filmography, box office, and links for the actors movies.
Arnold Sports Festival - Arnolds official fitness expo competition site