Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Joe Weider - Some Regrets?

Photo Above: Joe Weider on the cover of Your Physique Magazine (Nov 1947)

Recently, Joe gave a revealing interview which leads us to believe that indeed he does have some regrets about the direction that modern mainstream bodybuilding has taken. You can find the entire article here: . But here are some selected quotes:

Interviewer: You mentioned on several occasions that while you are happy to see how bodybuilding has progressed over the years, you feel that your original message never reached the public in its entirety.

Joe: ...From the very start, I wanted bodybuilding to be seen not just as a way to build massive muscles, but also as a way to get healthy. I'm afraid that message got lost, and I still want to get it out there.

Interviewer: Do you feel that people's perception of bodybuilders must be changed for them to accept that message?

Joe: Sure. Who wants to look at a guy who is lumbering and doesn't look healthy? They want to see guys and girls who are beautiful to look at. People should look at a bodybuilder and say, "Hey! There is someone I'd like to look like." You know, bodybuilders are heroes to a lot of people, and they should look like heroes...

CPB's Take on Joe's Comments: Well...we might be misunderstanding Joe here, but if you look at all the back issues of Joe's magazines (Your Physique, Muscle Power, Muscle Builder) in the Goden Age (1940s and 50s) before steroids appeared, the bodybuilders indeed had classic physiques and looked like heroes! They often posed like the classical statues of ancient Greek hereos and gods. They received the admiration of women and guys wanted to be like them!

There is no better proof of this than Steve Reeves. Most guys would be more than happy to look like him. Most women would find his physique attractive. Now compare that with today's mainstream top bodybuilders. How many guys would honestly want to look like a Jay Cutler or Marcus Ruhl - whether on or off-season? How many women are really attracted to "Hulk-like" physiques?

Modern bodybuilding has truly lost the classic, heroic ideal and now has become an EXTREME SPORT - designed to shock and entertain perhaps - but mainstream top bodybuilders are certainly not "beautiful to look at." Yes...Joe's original vision and message has indeed been lost in mainstream bodybuilding. But, here at Classic Physique Builder, we hope to keep that original vision and message alive!


Johnny G said...

Abolish all steroid use in the IFBB would be a start Joe to show that you have regrets - you created a Frankenstein and now the villagers have come to destroy it - do us a favor and stand back or Joe better yet use your magazines to promote Classic Physique training and dieting for a couple of issues, like they say in church(show me that old time religion, but in our case show us that old school Classic Physique training)How about Anthony let us push a couple of buttons to see if the Weider clan is interested in leaving a good legacy or a bunch of steroid freaks

- CPB - said...

Hi Johnny,

Great comment! Certainly Joe and Ben could have spoken out and taken more action than they did.

However, Joe sold his his company Weider Publications (including all his magazines) in 2002. So he no longer makes decisions regarding the editorial position of Flex, Muscle & Fitness, etc. As part of the deal, Joe is allowed to write a one page column in both mags I believe - but he has no power over the mags.

I did see an excerpt from an interview with Joe on the internet somewhere (I wish I had saved the site) in which Joe said that he was thinking of publishing a muscle mag the way they used to be (or something to that effect). But he is about 89 years of age now and I doubt that he will do anything. But we'll see!

All the best,

CPB (Anthony)