Wednesday, November 25, 2020

First Impressions of Herman Goerner (1927)

 Article Courtesy of Jarett Hulse.
Many thanks!


Health & Strength, March 19, 1927.
Goerner has arrived, and is staying at the house of W.A. Pullum. No sooner had this piece of information reached my ears than I made my way to Camberwell. 

So much has recently been written and said about this latest prodigy in the strong-man world that with more than a little curiosity I entered the room, where he was to be found in the company of his wife and his host. 

I was prepared for something unusual in the way of muscular development, but I confess to more than a slight shock of surprise when, from his chair, there rose to greet me the most massively herculean figure I have ever set eyes upon.

Though over 6 ft., Goerner's height does not strike one a being above the average owing to the proportional development of his body in every direction. The first thing that impressed itself upon me was the tremendous breadth of his shoulders. It must have been such a pair of shoulders as these that first gave rise to the Greek conception of Atlas bearing the world. Goerner's chest is equally imposing, measuring 51-1/2 inches. The equally imposing arms look might even when covered by the sleeve, and, when bared, the 18 inch biceps would make anyone think twice before entering upon anything but the most amiable relations with their possessor. The statuesque thighs form worth pillars for the support of this magnificent torso.

A Gentle Giant
A few minutes' conversation with Goerner reveals that this formidable frame encloses a gentle and childlike spirit. His smile disarms the menace of his stature, and the voice, although firm and manly, betrays the inherent kindliness of his disposition. Nor is this mighty man without a quaint sense of humour, which is particularly apparent in the quiet, jocular fashion in which he refers to his own exploits.      

These have been before the public of Germany and South Africa ever since the Great War ended. In both countries have the audiences of circuses and music-halls been thrilled by feats such as - thus the inscription on a trophy won at Munich puts it - had never been seen there yet. Such a testimony coming from the most critical and most spoilt of physical culture audiences in the world means rare praise indeed. For the last four years Goerner has been touring in South Africa, performing before the Prince of Wales when His Highness's world tour brought him to this dominion.
 Goerner, who is now 35, started on his strong-man career at the age of 15. He is entirely self-taught, and has practiced wrestling as well as weight-lifting. These two forms of exercise and a certain amount of heavy hammer work have been the chief items in his training.    
Already After Records! 

And now Goerner is in England and by the time these lines appear in print will have been presented to the public by his manager, Mr. W.A. Pullum, at the National Sporting Club. At the latter's house, just to show what he was capable of, the strong man performed on the morning after his arrival a One-Hand Dead Lift of 530 lb., a Two-Hands Dead-Lift of 630 lb., and a Two-Hands Clean and Jerk of 315 lb. At the National Sporting Club Goerner will attempt to break two world's records, and Mr. Pullum is confident that with a little extra training, and under his personal tuition, the figure of the Two-Hands Lift, colossal as it already is, will be brought up to something very near to 700 lb.
Asking Mr. Goerner about the mode of which produced such marvelous results, I was told that he relied on all-round diet, with plenty of vegetables and fruit, and strict moderation in tobacco and drink, to keep him in good condition. Goerner makes it a rule rigorously to abstain from any liquor a couple of hours before his performances - a thing which would seem a very sensible precaution in view of the fact that he juggles with a weight of 120 lb.
Prior to his public speaking appearance Mr. Goerner is seeing the sights of London, and I should imagine that the person sitting next to him on top of a bus will have a "thin" time of it!       




No comments:

Post a Comment

Blog Archive