Tag Archives: Art Montini

HOF BIO – ART MONTINI

By Al Myers

(Webmasters Note: Over the next month I will be running a series of biography blogs covering all past USAWA Hall of Fame members.  These bios will be added to the history section, under Hall of Fame.)

HALL OF FAME BIOGRAPHY

ART MONTINI – CLASS OF 1993

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Montini-DL1Art Montini was in the inaugural class of Hall of Fame inductees – and rightfully so. Art is the most decorated all-rounder in USAWA history, having won overall best lifter at four National Championships (1991, 1992, 1993, and 1995). He was born October 11th, 1927 in Beaver County, Pennsylvania. After graduating from High School, Art joined the Navy in 1945 and served our country in WWII aboard a naval ship. After his military service, he went to work in a steel mill in which he continued until retirement. Art’s early sport activities included playing “sandlot” baseball, and even some semi-pro football. Art started lifting weights when he was 20 years old. At first, he competed in Olympic Weightllifting. But once he got started competing in all-round weightlifting that was his focus from then on. Art’s favorite lifts are the Steinborn and all of the chain lifts. However, he trains all of the all-round lifts at different times in his workouts. Art is one of only three lifters that has over 400 USAWA records!! Art is a member of the Ambridge V.F.W. Barbell Club and does all of his training there. He has competed in over 100 all-round weightlifting meets!!!! You can always count on Art being at the National Championships. He has even been involved in the promotion of the National Championships, being the Co-Meet Director of the Nationals in 1991 and 1999 in Ambridge. Art is an outstanding official as well, both at the National level and at the World level. Art was the first elected Vice President of the USAWA, elected in 1989 and serving in that position till 2007.  Art has been the recipient of many USAWA Yearly Awards – Courage Award 2016, 2014, 2013, 2012 and Sportsmanship Award 2015, 2011, and 2009. In 2010 Art was awarded the IAWA Award of Merit.  This prestigious Award has only been presented to four IAWA members ever.  In 2012, Art received the “25 Year Participation Award” at the National Championships, an award given to him based on his outstanding participation in the USAWA National Championships throughout the 25 year history of the USAWA.

Montini-Hip

When asked what he enjoys about the USAWA, he replied, “I really enjoy competing with other lifters. I’ve made many great friends at all of the meets.” In 1988, Art was selected to the Beaver County Sports Hall of Fame. Today, Art lives in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania and still competes in all-round weightlifting meets even though he is over 80 years of age!! He even celebrates his birthday every year by hosting Art’s Birthday Bash, an all-round weightlifting meet, on his birthday.

Lifter of the Month – Art Montini

By Al Myers

Art Montini pulling a new IAWA World Record in the Deadlift at the 2016 IAWA Gold Cup.

Art Montini pulling a new IAWA World Record in the Deadlift at the 2016 IAWA Gold Cup.

The lifter of the month for October is Art Montini!

Art had a brilliant month of lifting in the USAWA last October.  First he competed in the IAWA World Championships in Lebanon, PA, placing 10th Overall as the oldest competitor in the meet. The next weekend he hosted his annual Art’s Birthday Bash Record Day in Pittsburgh on his 89th birthday.  This meet promotion had to be one of the biggest he’s ever had for his birthday bash.  Several of the overseas lifters competed in it for the first time.  It was an International affair! Then the following weekend he made the trip to Abilene, Kansas to compete in the IAWA Gold Cup.  In the Gold Cup he deadlifted an unbelievable 80 KG.  That’s 3 USAWA/IAWA competitions over the course of three weekends, which makes him a very deserving winner for the USAWA Lifter of the Month.

Congrats Arts!

Lifter of the Month – Art Montini

by Al Myers

Art Montini in Glasgow, Scotland competing in the 2015 IAWA World Championships.

Art Montini in Glasgow, Scotland competing in the 2015 IAWA World Championships.

I’m a little behind on announcing the LIFTER OF THE MONTH so today I’m going to get caught up!

Looking back at October it was a “no-brainer” who the lifter of the month should be for the USAWA.  It is none other than the IRONMAN Art Montini. Art represented the USAWA in Scotland at the IAWA World Championships early in the month, where on his 88th birthday,  won another World Title. He followed this up the NEXT WEEKEND by hosting his annual Birthday Bash, which is now the longest running sanctioned meet in the USAWA. That’s TWO weekends in a row of competing, with one being an overseas trip.  That’s deserving of LIFTER OF THE MONTH in my opinion!

Congrats Art!

Lifter of the Month – Art Montini

by Al Myers

Art Montini recieved a birthday cake in Scotland to recognize his 88th birthday.  The cake was presented to him by Judy Habecker, Janet Dick, and Karen Gardner.

Art Montini recieved a birthday cake in Scotland to recognize his 88th birthday. The cake was presented to him by Judy Habecker, Janet Dick, and Karen Gardner.

The USAWA Lifter of the Month for October is ART MONTINI! Art was an obvious choice as he had a busy month of lifting in the USAWA for October.   Art won another IAWA World Championship in Glasgow, Scotland to start the month of, followed by hosting his annual Birthday Bash the next weekend in which he set several new USAWA records!  I should mention that Art turned 88 when he was competing in Scotland.  He was the oldest competitor in the meet.  I had the priviledge of traveling and rooming with Art in Scotland, and he does not act act 88. When we we arrived in Glasgow we made a trip to Stirling to visit the Wallace Monument (a place I’ve been to several times and always enjoy), and even after a long “red eye” flight the night before, Art made the trek to the top with Chad and me.   Art is a true inspiration to everyone in the USAWA and the IAWA!

Round Up Training

By John McKean

John Grimek performing a one arm overhead lift at the old York Barbell Club.

John Grimek performing an one arm overhead lift at the old York Barbell Club.

Surprisingly, the fabled super human did not squash me like a bug, spit in my direction, or merely ignore an insignificant little nobody like me! At the time I was a wide eyed college student witnessing the parade of Iron Game icons who were milling about at one of the famous York Barbell Club picnics at Hoffman’s wooded Brookside Park. Brushing my right shoulder, John Grimek and his wife casually strolled by, causing an instant,massive lump to clog my throat! Best I could think to do was croak out a meek “Hi, John!” The mighty Grimek, huge arms in full display in a cut sleeve t-shirt, merely extended his hand in warm greeting and genuinely replied ” Hey, great to see you! How’s your training coming along?” Then he started gabbing  as if we’d been long time buddies and avid training partners! Naturally a crowd quickly built around our discussion, amid other queries from the group, when it occurred to me to ask about a point made in a recent issue of John’s MD magazine.

Questioning him about a very interesting, unique arm building article (written by Mr Universe, Tom Sansone), where the major premise was always to keep training time short by constantly CHANGING bi/tri exercises every workout, I was wondering if John himself shared that author’s conviction.” Oh,yes, ABSOLUTELY” emphasized John, “especially if you desire to greatly increase STRENGTH as well!” That statement shocked and puzzled me, as I’d assumed that one had to labor through a movement for quite a while in order to reach decent poundage. Only much later in life did I come to realize that this all-knowing lifting guru had provided the quintessential KEY to much of his  own fabled super strength, and gave a glimpse  to the brilliance he acquired from instinctual power work during his youth.

Of course, VARIETY is also the essence of ALL-ROUND competition ,which I’ve been involved with exclusively for the past 3 decades.( In fact, John Grimek was our first inductee to the USAWA Hall of Fame!) However, for most of that time it’s been a struggle to include a fairly good range of official lifts (we have nearly 200 events!)into workouts without spending entire days in the gym. So, to chase Grimek’s lead , I read “between the lines” in accounts of his earliest training ; seems he followed a basic,constant pattern in standard ,heavy exercises, but usually ended with a single massive effort on some odd strength feat. Never much in favor of “sets/reps”, he’d just extend one big all-out push,pull,partial, or hold. And,of course, ALWAYS experimenting with something new, unusual, or differant.

Now, it occurred to me, some 50 years since I first marveled over Grimek’s sage advice , that I can save time in the gym, yet train a bigger variety of lifts more effectively if I only tweek John’s essential power building KEY a bit. Simply, I needed  to start with a  moderately loaded barbell, build up weight in increments (such as 20 pounds each set), and perform a semi-challenging LIFT that will “FIT” each differant poundage. For example, the other day I began with a fairly heavy curl, added 2 ten pound plates, did a single bent arm pullover off the floor, then an increment up for a row. Twenty more pounds for an easy one arm deadlift. And on up (lots of ten pound plates laying there!) through subsequent singles for a hack lift, Ciavattone pull, heels together deadlift, Jefferson (or straddle), 12″ base deadlift, 2 bars deadlift, and finish with our heavy Kennedy lift .Yep, an eleven “event” total, great variety,decent strength output (mostly along similar “off the floor” lines),and ,most importantly, no multiple set drudgery or boredom at all! Heck, I thought I was competing in one of the USAWA’s exciting “record day” events (in itself, a form of this training system)! At the rather fast  termination to the workout, in fact, my mind& mood were as “pumped” as my legs and back were!

Next workout, if I don’t decide to change the list completely, I’ll merely add 5 pounds to the initial lift in that sequence,which,of course, puts an additional nickel on EVERY lift. Advancement will continue until some weak link in the chain becomes a “partial”; there’s never such a thing as a “miss” -max effort is always a BUILDER ! Besides, no lift stays stuck for long, as each in the series tends to boost and strengthen all others!

My training partner, 88 year old (!!) USAWA patriarch Art Montini, has been following his own version (Art’s  well thought out plans feature 28 lifts, not done all at once, but 7  lifts per session, alternating each workout) of this “Round-Up”  for years with considerable success. Art recently won (again!) the IAWA World Championships in Scotland, and is second all time on our national record list with over 400 current marks in various age and weight divisions. His brief, variety enhanced workouts begin at 4 AM, EVERY morning, finish quickly before 5, then has him bounding through the day with unbelievable vigor !

Want the strength of Grimek and the longevity of Montini? Forget all useless, time robbing set/rep systems and “Round-Up” for an instant power surge, vastly increased energy, and all-round versatility!

 

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