1 2 3


The wrestling legend Bruno Sammartino was born on October 6, 1935 in Italy. He came to United States of America in 1950. Due to the hardships he endured in Italy because of German occupation when he came to the USA he was very thin and spoke very little English. Due to this he was bullied in school which drove him to weightlifting to build his body up. He took up power lifting and Olympic lifts as his workouts to build himself up. His story resonates with many of us who dealt with or deal with being skinny, thin or out of shape and have to deal with being bullied. Well his hard work paid off and by 1956 he had made on the Olympic weight lifting team. In 1959 he set a record in the bench press with a lift of 565 lbs. at a height of 6', 1’’ and a body weight of about 280 pounds. He also competed in a few bodybuilding contests and even won Mr. Allegheny. In the 1960's he came out with a bodybuilding course to help beginners put on weight and strength fast. The name of the course was "The Bruno Course of Bodybuilding". This course is no longer in print and finding it on sale online is damn near impossible (trust me I'm trying to find a copy) but through some research I've discovered the workout.

Below is the workout from his course:


"1. This was a course for beginners, so Bruno kept the volume pretty low. You did 3 sets of 6 repetitions on all of your exercises. As you got stronger, you could add a warm up set on heavier exercises such as squats and bench presses, so you'd do 4 sets of 6 repetitions on them.

2. You trained with weights 3 times per week -- and on two other days you did a bodyweight workout.

3. You made progress by gradually adding weight to the bar. Bruno emphasized the importance of SMALL increases in weight. Over time, the small increases in weight would add up to BIG GAINS!

The weight lifting work out was as follows: (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday)

1. Parallel squat

2. Bench press

3. Barbell curl

4. Press behind neck

5. Upright rowing

6. Sit-ups

The bodyweight work out looked like this: (Tuesday, Thursday)

1. Hindu squats 1 or 2 sets 

2. Hindu pushups 1 or 2 sets

3. Behind the neck pull-ups 2 sets

4. Calf isometrics

5. Neck isometrics

On the bodyweight work, you did whatever reps you could do at the beginning and gradually added reps, working up to 100 reps in Hindu squats and Hindu pushups, and 15 reps in pull-ups. 

Also, Bruno urged trainees to include some running or jogging -- perhaps a mile or two a couple of times a week. He said this was particularly important if you were trying out for a high school sports team."



Sergio Bruno Arnold

Sergio Oliva, Bruno Sammartino and Arnold Schwarzenegger.


Bruno and Sergio

Bruno and Sergio.


bruno at 63 still pumping iron

Here he was at age 63 and still pumping iron.