Anyone serious about weight lifting over the age of 30 has proabably heard of Joe Weider, and the younger ones should have by now. He built a fitness empire based on his love for lifting weights. In today's age of body weight exercises, compound lifts and kettlebells, Weider's original body duilding workouts may seem a little archaic, but they were the basis on which weight lifiting and body building has become today.
If you bought a Weider bench, weightset, or other appartus you surely got one of his famous workout charts that would show the basic body positions of his favorite lifts. Besides selling weight lifting equiptment, the Weider fitness empire also published several health and fitness magazines such as Muscle and Fitness, Flex, Men's Fitness, and Shape.
Weider also helped to found the IFBB and the Mr. and Ms. Olympia contests.
Weider's weight lifting experience dates back to the mid-30s, where he first worked out in his family garage with a set of barbells made of car wheels and axles. How is that for extreme? Weider was a polish-Canadian who was born and grew up in Montreal.
Later in his health and fitness career, he became a mentor for such young unknowns as Arnold Schwarzenegger(Conan the Barbarian, Kindegarden Cop) and Lou Ferrigno(the Incredible Hulk). Besides their Hollywood fame, both of these gents were also tops in the body building industry in their heyday.
Weider had made his home in the Los Angeles area and is survived by his wife Betty, his daughter and three grandchildren. He lived to be 93 years old, passing away in a Los Angeles hospital this past Saturday morning.