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Arnold Sports Festival Gives a Fitting Tribute to the Founder of Arnold Strongman Classic – Terry Todd

Radha Iyer

Arnold Sports Festival Gives a Fitting Tribute to the Founder of Arnold Strongman Classic – Terry Todd

Torchbearers, throughout history, have a special place in the hearts of the masses, and for Arnold Schwarzenegger, one of them happened to be the pioneer of the Arnold Strongman Classic – Terry Todd. The powerlifter known for trailblazing his way into strength sports soon grew popular for his contributions to the Arnold Sports Festival.

Recently, the official page of the festival commemorated his death anniversary on July 7th. Till 2018, when he took his last breath, Todd made sure to make the Arnold Strongman Classic a roaring success, with several participants acing the strength challenges, much to the delight of the audience.

To further seal their respect and memory of the icon, the Arnold Sports Festival featured glimpses from a short documentary on Todd’s life and contributions to the sport. Featuring kind words from some of the well-known stars like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Lorimer, and Hafthor Bjornsson, ‘The Commissioner of Power’ is an ode to one of America’s finest athletes.

Todd believed in his passion for sports and strength, particularly his weightlifting, which several were skeptical of at the time. He had a vision and was eventually approached by Schwarzenegger and Lorimer, who wanted him to put up a show at their festival. Later, Lorimer even reminisced in the documentary:

“He has been the man we pointed to as the leading authority in strength sports in the world. And so, we were very very fortunate…to have Terry Todd and Jan Todd, coordinating the strength sports for us.”

Arnold Schwarzenegger was always in awe of the couple, and years ago, when he began working with them for the festival, he recalled how dedicated they were to their passion. Addressing an audience in an old video, he remarked:

“Every time I run into them, that’s all they talk about. They’re fanatic(s)!”

However, Todd’s dedication to the sport went so far beyond his fanaticism that even athletes were grateful to him for paving the path. Some of the most popular strongman athletes today owe their success to Todd, and one even dedicated a heartfelt speech to the icon.

Hafthor Bjornsson expressed his gratitude towards Terry Todd once at the Arnold Strongman Classic

The Icelandic strongman legend wasn’t always on the top of the roster. In an address at the Arnold Strongman Classic after his win, he recalled his humble beginnings in 2011 when he started in strength sports and got a call from Todd. The latter wanted him to get pumped up for the Arnold Strongman Classic 2012, and Bjornsson declared he was ready.

To the giant’s disappointment, he stood last and lost all confidence in himself. Moreover, it wasn’t until Todd encouraged him and pointed him in the right direction that he picked up his fallen pieces. Now, he’s the GOAT of the sport, and credits the founder for his constant motivation.

Post Edited By:Shraman Mitra

About the author

Radha Iyer

Radha Iyer


Radha Iyer is a US Sports writer at The SportsRush. With a Master's degree in Media and Communication, and a background in content creation and production, sports journalism has been a part and parcel of her demonstrated history in the said field. Olympic sports hold a special place in her heart, and she is particularly interested in sports like track and field, gymnastics, and swimming. She also draws inspiration from legendary athletes like Michael Phelps, Usain Bolt, Simone Biles, and many more.

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