Which Ironage Bodybuilders Claimed To Be Natural But Took Steroids?
By Strength Oldschool
A lot of people believe that the term “Ironage” should refer to those bodybuilders pre 1950 because they strongly believe that steroids were not available to bodybuilders before that period and so anyone who trained and built a strong body pre 1950 did so NATURALLY.
Which brings me to the question…Which bodybuilder(s) in your opinion claimed to be natural but possibly took steroids? (Select your bodybuilders from 1970 or before) Even if the person you choose has always declared to be natural, If you believe for whatever reason (because you know it to be fact – provide evidence – or because you just strongly believe so) then state the bodybuilder(s) whom you think had taken steroids.
Bill Pearl has stated that in the past he did try steroids but soon came off them and never used them again. However If I’m honest, it’s difficult to believe a man who stood head to toe looking just as impressive as the great Arnold and Sergio Oliva (both of whom have never denied taking steroids). Was Bill Pearl’s genetics so superior to Arnold’s and ‘The Myth’s that he never needed steroids to compete at the top level against the greatest bodybuilders in the world?? Hard to believe.
However when you listen to Bill Speak and the way he conducts himself in public he comes across as a man with great integrity. Which is why I remain undecided as to whether or not Bill Pearl really did stop taking steroids and remained natural. His physique tells me he took steroids, period! But in all honestly I do not know for sure. So if anyone wishes to share views on Mr Pearl please post your comments.
If you wish to express your opinions on other bodybuilders then please reply to this topic.
The following comments are from SBWILLIS…
“I don’t believe the great Steve Reeves did. He was rather adamant about not taking steroids but again they would not have been as widely available in his early days. Steve was quoted once on the subject as saying, “If you don’t have enough of your own testosterone to be a body builder then pick up another sport…..like ping pong”.
Its a great quote, not sure completely but if you look at his physique and measurements, if he had been on steroids one might think that he would have been considerably larger.”
The following comments are from Magnus…
“Admin, you are right Bill Pearl did take steroids.
Years ago one of the top british pro BBuilders was a close friend, he always came back from his USA tours with all the latest secret gossip! He had it “on good authority” that when Bill retired from competing he became a vegetarian NOT because too much meat had raised his cholesterol and blood pressure sky high, but because steroids had “thickened his blood so much” that he was advised to cut out large portions of fat and protein from his diet.
I cannot remember where I read this but recently I saw an article in which Bill apparently confessed this. He said he started steroids at the beginning of the 1960s, and if you compare his appearance in the 50s with his 1960s contest condition you can see the huge difference in his physique
Sorry I cannot tell you where I saw the article but I will try to find it and will post a link to it if I do.
BY the way, I agree Bill is a guy of great integrity and I still respect him, after all steroid use is hardly a rare thing amongst the top guys is it?”
Here is a link to an Interview with bodybuilder Roger Walker who states that bodybuilding legend Reg Park was on steroids. Click here.
What do you think – Was Reg Park natural as he always claimed to be?
The following is from Ray Nobile…
“JOHN GRIMEK ADMITED TO TAKING DIANABOL TABLETS IN THE LATE 50S. ONLY TOOK 2 A DAY FOR 6 WEEKS, SAID HE DIDNT NOTICE ANY IMPROVMENT, THIS WAS AFTER HE HAD RETIRED FROM COMPETITION FOR MANY YEARS. IN MY OPINION I THINK HE WAS DRUG FREE DURING HIS LONG COMPETETIVE CAREER. STEROIDS WERE AROUND LONG BEFORE THE 1950s. TESTOSTERONE WAS INTRODUCED IN 1936, ADOLF HITLER WAS GIVEN TEST INJECTIONS BY HIS DOCTOR, AS WELL AS 27 OTHER DAILY MEDICATIONS. PRESIDENT KENNEDY WAS ALSO TAKING TEST INJECTIONS, HOWEVER WHEN WAS STEROIDS FIRST USED BY BODYBUILDERS? I RECKON AMERICA IN THE MID FIFTIES AND EUROPE IN THE EARLY SIXTIES. ” ~ Ray Nobile
What do you think? Which Bodybuilders from the past, claimed to be natural but really weren't in your opinion? Post your comments below.