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IVY RUSSEL

Ivy Russell pioneering women's strength training in the early 1900's!

Ivy Elizabeth Russel was born in 1907 in Croydon (England). When Ivy was 12, she became a member of a local gymnastic club. At 14 she had serious pulmonary problems and asthma. Russel later she showed an interest to physical culture, started training with weights and became one of the most famous strongwomen of the decade of 1930s. She worked in strength demonstrations, like lifting and maintaining several persons… Later, she opened a small gym in Croydon, England. Just before the World War II she married a doctor Londoner, crossed the Channel and relocated to England. In the article of the magazine “Pearson’ s Weekly” for October 9, 1937, it was said that her biceps were of the same size that ones of the German boxer Max Schmeling, heavyweight world champion. Her physical parameters were higher than ones of that strong man: her calf size exceeded his by more than one centimeter, the circumference of her thighs – by two and a half centimeters. Owing to her incredible physical strength Ivy became a great wrestler. In 1934 she started attending the “Victory Ladies Wrestling Club” for training in wrestling, and in a year she managed to gain the champion title in the female wrestling championship defeating all her opponents. Once a man visiting the wrestling class learned that Ivy was training in wrestling and started mocking her. Other men in the class retorted him that any woman should know how to wrestle. Being deeply touched by this incident Ivy invited the man to her gym and there grabbed him into her arms and kept squeezing strongly until he asked for mercy and begged to release him. 

Today’s Workout:
100 Overhead Squats for Time (95#/65#)


7 Comments
  1. CPC giving a shout out to ye olde tyme lady bad asses! Ms. Russel would obviously have shot you in the head if she had to.

  2. At the time it wouldn’t have been very lady like so she probably would have just crushed your head with her well muscled thighs. What a way to go.

  3. I like this post -something new and different! YAY for strong ladies throughout time!

    (I wonder if I could squeeze a man to beg for mercy??!)

  4. you can do it ATrain, I know you can!

  5. HAHA!! Thank you Su! Okay, I’ll try it!!
    Which man is brave enough to volunteer to have ATrain squeeze the mercy out of him?!! Or should I just sneak attack one of ‘em?

  6. Sneak attack!

  7. Tempting, very tempting.

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