Tag Archives: Art Montini

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!

 

Art’s Birthday Bash

by John McKean

Art’s 88th birthday & BD Bash

The previous week on his 88th birthday Art Montini won another World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland.

The previous week on his 88th birthday Art Montini won another World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland.

Not a beautiful Autumn morning like usual, it was SNOWING out side my house! Seemed a bad sign, as I was, unbelievably for me, already in a bad mood, over worrying that attendance would be minimal, since the previous week’s IAWA World Meet had usurped Art’s long standing birthday meet date (next time ,meet directors, if your plans are on or just after Oct 12,suck it up! Art has had claim to this date for 88 years!!!). To bottom out my bad start this morning,our cat upchucked over my nice meet shirt, which was carefully laid out on the kitchen floor for packing!!

Glumly entering the VFW gym, my mood instantly changed and I was immediately inspired seeing the GREAT Dean Ross, all the way from Oklahoma, about to begin a series of finger lifts! Dean had left his home, stopped over in Missouri for a Highlands Games event, then drove without sleep to Ambridge and did his lifts. He then, after his usual hilarious jokes & stories (don’t ever accept a quarter from this guy!!), hit the road again, promising to find sleep in a motel  somewhere hours away, and then get home to OK! “Hey”,he quipped, “I do have to work tomorrow morning!” At 72 years of age and looking as strong as he displays, this is what I call a true IRON MAN !!

Then in bounced a spry Steve Santangelo and his lovely, personable wife, all the way from Kentucky! Steve lifted great and showed us a lift rarely performed in the USAWA meets – a NECK BRIDGE pullover and press! Not bad for  a 63 year old!

Travelers weren’t over, either, as Cleveland and Vermilion, Ohio were represented by the wonderful Schmidt family, Scott and wife Kathy, with Bob Geib and Tony Frasso driving in from V-town. They all promised if we hold an “in-the-works” record day in December (for MY 70th birthday!!) that they’ll brave Dec weather to make the trip again!

We hadn’t seen local boxing coach Andy Root for a few years, as he and wife Angela (of 240# bench press fame at a petite 120 some bw!) have a new baby to take care of (congrats mom&dad!). But Andy did some terrific deadlifting and took some wild stabs at heavy bent pressing (not as easy as it looked,huh Andy?!)

Of course, birthday boy Art, tho still sore from last weekend’s World win, looked fresh as a donut,err, I mean daisy! Not only did he perform his usual great finger lifts, but took a stab at a brand new event -the Dinnie Lift- and discovered he was MADE for this lift!! Yeah, he drove me crazy in making me compute the 75% for the smaller rod each time, but it was worth it to watch the ole boy delight in his own efforts!

We left the gym, and tho cold outside, the sun and brilliant tree colors were now out to make for a great Fall day, after all! Bob Geib was treating Art to a birthday dinner at the famous Ambridge roast beef restaurant, and I’d caught some nice rainbow trout on Friday, which Art will bake for a later bd snack! Yes, Art does the eating even better than he lifts!

MEET RESULTS

Art’s 2015 Birthday Bash Record Day
Ambridge, PA
October 18th, 2015

Judges (3 official system used) – Art Montini, Scott Schmidt, John McKean

Stephen Santangelo BW 162  Class 75 K (60+)  age 63
2″ vertical 2 bars deadlift  292#
2″ Dumbbell deadlift left    130#
2″ Dumbbell deadlift right  130#
Neck bridge pullover and press  80#
No thumb deadlift  280#
No thumb deadlift Ciavattone  265#

John McKean  BW 164.5 Class 75k(65+) age 69
Dinnie Lift  320.5#
Ciavattone2″ bar deadlift 175#
Right arm Ciavattone deadlift 145#
Left arm Ciavattone deadlift 135#
bench press fulton bar  104#
Heels together deadlift  224#
Rectangular fix  65#
Fulton bar rectangular fix 40#
deadlift 12″ heels  224#

Art Montini  BW 173 class 80k (85+) age 88
Left Ciavattone deadlift 2″ bar 60#
clean &press 2″ bar  60#
Index fingers deadlift with olympic bar 75#
Ring fingers deadlift with olympic bar 75#
Dinnie lift  283#

Kathy Schmidt BW 175  class 80k (f 55+) age 58
Left hand 1″ vertical bar deadlift 47.5K
Dumbbell deadlift (L)  47.5K
Ciavattone deadlift 60K

Scott Schmidt bw 234 Class 110K (60+) age 62
Right hand 2″vertical bar deadlift 75K
Left hand 2″vertical bar deadlift 75K
2 hands 2″ vertical bars deadlift 110K
left hand dumbbell press 25K
French Press 40K

Dean Ross bwt 253 class 115 k (70+)age 72
left little finger deadlift 57#
left ring finger lift 67#
left middle finger lift 72#
left index finger lift 72
right little finger lift 57#

Bob Geib bw 258 class 120K (70+) age 72
Dinnie Lift 309#
Fulton deadlift 270#
Straddle deadlift 305#
Stiff leg deadlift 209#

note : all Dinnie lifts were with lighter weight at 75% or slightly less of heavier rod thanks to Al for great rings!!

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