Was Bobby Pandour Natural Or On Steroids? Analysis of Bobby Pandour's training methods and physique

| by Truth Seeker |


The era of Eugen Sandow, Bobby Pandour and other ultra-retro strong men attracts the interest of muscle worshipers looking for the truth. Many muscle scholars have been digging into the mysterious past in an attempt to find out how much mass can be gained naturally. After all, somebody born in the 19th century is more likely to be natural than the 90s “tren” kids.

What are you going to inject when there’s nothing to inject?

Bobby Pandour (Wladyslaw Kurcharczyk) was born in 1876 and died in 1920. He was known for his aesthetic physique resembling a Greek God. According to the official information, steroids were not used for recreational purposes before the 1930s. The logical conclusion is that steroids were not available during Pandour’s reign, and therefore, his physique can become a reality without muscle elixirs.

How did Pandour build his massive musculature?

Give me fairy tales, baby! Please.

Bobby Pandour’s training is highly controversial. It’s believed that he trained with 10lbs dumbbells and avoided heavy lifting on purpose. To make the issue even more bizarre, his leg development is attributed to climbing stairs while carrying his brother. This sounds cool, but can a man really build big muscles by lifting cheap dumbbells at home and climbing stairs while carrying kids?

Unfortunately, or not, it is highly unlikely that Bobby Pandour’s whole physique was the result a similar training strategy.

Many tend to ignore the fact that Pandour was also a gymnast. Therefore, his upper body size was probably the result of advanced bodyweight training rather than a secret dumbbell routine.

In addition, climbing stairs while holding a heavy object is actually a pretty good overall lower body exercise. The movement can even be modified to target different portions of the leg.

If you walk one step at a time without skipping stairs, most of the work will be done by the quads. If you skip a few stairs, you are essentially performing a lunge with emphasis on the posterior chain.

The legs of Bobby Pandour do not look extraordinarily big. Consequently, this approach may have actually been the core of his leg training. However, can you really know?

History is the lie commonly agreed upon.

– Voltaire

Most of the information that the public receives is heavily altered. Some history books are basically full of fiction. Therefore, a certain amount of skepticism seems healthy when analyzing the retro bodybuilders.

Moreover, good things don’t come easily. A solid physique cannot be achieved by lifting 10lbs dumbbells. Most healthy males have the capacity to do biceps curls for sets of 10-12 reps with similar weights without even going to the gym. Besides, thousands of people are already playing with light weights in the gym only to get nothing in return.

According to the information available online, Bobby Pandour was 5’6″ and weighed 160lbs at a low body fat as seen in the photos. Nattyronot.com’s guide for natural bodybuilders suggests that the maximum natural potential of a man who is 5′ 6″ tall is 142lbs. However, this number is for someone with really good genetics and calls for a brutally lean condition.

Since the images of Bobby Pandour are not exactly HD, it’s really hard to accurately judge whether he is at 5%, 8% or even 12% body fat. Manipulation of the angles and other ultra old-school photo enhancement may be playing tricks with our perception. Therefore, Bobby Pandour’s actual weight in contest condition may be extremely close to the number in the guide.

When men were men

We have bad news for your sons and grandsons. Studies have shown that with each generation the average amount of testosterone in the male body is going down. A long term research published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism revealed the following:

“The interesting thing we discovered was that, on average, when we measured the testosterone in the blood of a 60-year-old in 1989 it was higher than that in a different 60-year-old measured in 1995,” said Thomas Travison, Ph.D., of the New England Research Institutes, Watertown, Mass. “We observed the same phenomenon over a wide range of ages.” {more}

Apparently, today’s males have a lot less testosterone than their great-grandfathers. Some sources reveal that modern men have 1/3 of the testosterone levels common for previous generations.

This may sound depressing, but at least explains why a natural bodybuilder from the previous century like Bobby Pandour can actually be bigger than a modern one despite all the fancy machinery, supplements and “training science” that we have today. After all, testosterone is king when it comes to growth.

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  1. AnonymousLifter4312

    I have read about the studies that show that our grandfathers and earlier generations of men had higher testosterone levels than we do. This is highlighted by the fact that natural bodybuilders pre-1950s looked more muscular than today’s natural gym rats.

    Based on this, I have come to the conclusion that some kind of hormone-boosting supplementation is absolutely needed for the average lifter of our generation, just to get a little bit of an edge and possibly approach the level of muscularity of bodybuilders from the time of our grandfathers.

    Since natural test-boosting products such as herbs and minerals barely do anything at all, after much consideration I decided that the occasional moderate use of pro-hormones is OK for me. You will by no means get cartoonishly humongous like today’s top-level pro competitors. But you may get a little bit closer to a classic beach physique of many decades ago.

    Some would disagree with the use of PHs and say it is not natural, but in a time period when our hormone levels are becoming unnaturally LOW, I feel that in order to combat this hormonal decline, it is necessary to take measures that actually work, just to get our levels back to where they were originally supposed to be in the first place!

    But In any case, don’t just jump into PH use; proper care and caution must be exercised. It can get pricey, and it is rather involved due to necessary ancillaries and post-cycle recovery. Do tons of detailed research, and be prepared to get blood tests to regularly monitor your hormone levels.

  2. Malhaar Wadaskar

    bobby padur was 1000% natty
    he died in yhe year of 1920
    steroids came in 1930s

    1. John Sullivan

      “steroids came in 1930s”

      You’re off by 25+ years. Just because they had the idea that testosterone did something back in the 1930’s it doesn’t mean that they had the access to what was essentially considered to be a research drug produced in small quantities, very expensive and that maybe a handful of people in the world had any access to or any idea what to do with it even if they did have it available.

      Anyone interested should do a search for “the history of steroids in bodybuilding” by Casey Butt who has a very good post on the subject on his website.

  3. Simeon Panda

    This contradicts your statements though. 98% of your natty test is bound to SHBG and albumin anyways. If his test levels were higher by 200ng or even 400ng than his todays equivalent, it wouldn’t change much because his free values would’ve been higher by a few picograms. When you go on cycle, practically all of the testosterone and steroids coming in are free. So when on, instead of having 2% free test, you now have 98% free test. Supraphysiological muscle is built not off of a couple picograms per ml, but of mcq.

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