This is a guest post by Mike Rinderle, the winner of the first annual Beast in the East Championship, steel bending phenomenon and Horseshoe Dominator. He and I partnered up to shoot our instructional dvd on horseshoe bending.
Once you try horseshoe bending, you will see right away, that it is a feat of strength that in a whole other world from other strength feats. So it brings about the question, what is it about horseshoe bending that sets it apart from other feats?
This is what Mike has to say about it…
Mike Rinderle, the Beast in the East
What makes horseshoe bending so special?
What sets horseshoe bending apart from other great feats of strength like phonebook tearing, card tearing, and license plate ripping?
I believe it’s a few different things.
Maybe it’s because horseshoes are made to be indestructible?
I mean, these things are made to be walked on by half-ton animals without bending or twisting! Everyone knows how strong these things are and to see a human bend one in his or her hands blows people away!
I’m not downplaying other feats but let’s face it, a phonebook doesn’t quite have the air of indestructibility that a big steel shoe has!
Or it could be the familiarity people have with horseshoes and horses.
Most people have tossed horseshoes in the back yard. It isn’t a strange object like a kettlebell or something people can’t comprehend the weight of, like a big stone or barbell.
People understand how ridiculously strong these things are and have probably held one in their hands at the last family picnic.
Perhaps it’s because there isn’t any trick to it. Period.
It’s all technique and brute force. Feats like phonebook tearing and apple crushing have been ruined by youtube. People figured out parlor tricks to make these things easier, posted them on the internet, and pretty much ruined the legitimate feats for all of us.
I think all those probably play a part in it, but for me it is the fact that it is one of the great historical feats performed by the legendary strongmen.
It is a feat made famous by strongmen of the past like Breitbart, Marx, and the Mighty Atom to today’s great shoe benders like Wigren, Povilaitis, and Milfeld to name just a few.
Did you know that DaVinci bent horseshoes?
Neither did I, until my good friend “The Horseshoe Destroyer” David Wigren gave me a little history lesson on this great old time feat of strength.
I asked David to send me a brief history on shoe bending and I was completely blown away by how far back it went.
Here’s what he sent me:
“The act of bending horseshoes has more than likely been around ever since they started forging horseshoes. You’re probably not going to be able to pin point the exact person who originated the idea of bending horseshoes. Indeed, if you start to dig in the history books of local strongman performers you will most likely find at least one or two relatively unknown performers bending horseshoes.”
“I know here in Sweden, I’ve heard of several performers such as Starknings Petter and Sixten Landby, to name just a few, who were bending horseshoes back in the day. And if you look as far back as the late 1400’s you’ll even find stories about Leonardo da Vinci, the famous painter and inventor, bending horseshoes.”
John Grunn Marx
“Approaching modern times, with the birth of the camera, we begin to see pictures of performers bending horseshoes. There is a picture of John Grunn Marx from 1905 bending a horseshoe using the exact kinking technique that we use today. And if you travel to the city of Mondorf in Luxemburg, you’ll find a monument erected in his honor, also displaying the kinking technique we’re talking about.”
Here is a picture of the famous statue:
Monument erected for John Grunn Marx in Mondorf in Luxemburg
And more recently, all it would take is a trip to the York museum to see incredible bends by strongmen like The Mighty Atom.”
The Mighty Atom
Perhaps nobody knows more about horseshoe bending than David, and Jedd and I were incredibly lucky to have him help us with our new Horseshoe Bending DVD, HAMMERING HORSESHOES!
– The Beast in the East, Mike Rinderle
As you can see, DIESELS, Horseshoe Bending has quite the history. From the heroes of the past to the modern day legends who continue the legacy, like Dennis Rogers, David Wigren, Pat Povilaitis, Dave Whitley, Adam Glass, Tom Kelley, Steve McGranahan, Chris Rider, Erik Vining, Mike McKenzie, John Beatty, Dan Cenidoza, Mike Bruce, and many, many more – horseshoe bending is one of the most alluring feats of strength that can be done.
And soon, you will know how to do it, legitimately, and in honor of all those who have paved the way.
Stay tuned, and all the best.