Kyriakos Grizzly | The Internet's Strongest Man

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Kyriakos Grizzly | The Internet's Strongest Man

I want to talk about Kyriakos Grizzly. This is a huge dude. He is around 6’1”, about 45 or 46 years old, of Greek descent with some Russian ethnicity based upon some internet research. The other crazy stuff around him is that most of his stuff is cell phone footage. The videos aren’t overproduced or anything super fancy.


What we have been seeing in his videos is essentially him just training. He has been doing this for nearly a decade. One of his really popular videos is him doing pad benches (bounces?) with 200 kilos for a set of fourteen reps.

Going into this, I like to think about him as a powerlifter of some sort who does some weightlifting movements, he is older, and he is massive, tipping over into the husky range.

Initial Response

This dude makes me laugh. The first video I watched of him has him doing like a Zercher bounce. He is just holding like a ton of kilos on the bar and just bouncing the bar. Some people will give the guy crap, saying the exercise looks like it is worthless. Still, there is something to be said when moving that much weight in any form. It makes everyone and anyone feel so powerful. 

There needs to be back strength to do this movement, at least with this type of weight. The movement will light up the erectors, the upper back, and the traps will be on fire after doing something like that.


Would I do that? No. Maybe for some fun at a later date.

High Pull

This next movement I like quite a bit. Watching the video, I can see he has the plates taped together. He is doing a banded high pull on an EZ curl bar. There is probably 130 kilos or 125 kilos depending on what the EZ bar weighs.


The movement will light up the posterior chain, lower back, hamstrings, traps, and delts. He busts out a set of fifteen. This is tough. This is actually hard. I highly recommend using this movement if you want a yoke, big shoulders, and big traps.

My understanding is that Kyriakos Grizzly does strongman competitions, does do some powerlifting, and does do some weightlifting, that something like this as an accessory, especially to failure, is really challenging.

Tug That Rope

Kyriakos Grizzly is big. He basically has no neck.


In this exercise video, it looks like he got an upgrade in camera for film footage capture. So he has this old make-shift bench that dips can be done on and he is doing a sled pull. My first thought watching this video, is how are his Chuck Taylor’s holding his toes? Think about how much he weighs, rocking his weight back and then putting all the force back into the front of the shoe. How they didn’t blow out is insane. Well-made shoes it seems.

The sled is loaded with weight. People will be like he is just rocking back and forth. However, he needs a good grip, his biceps and lats engaged, and his lower back and trunk need to be stable as the quads drive into the ground. This is a legit movement for strongmen. It is challenging as well. It will help powerlifters with pulls as well.


Not a bad move, especially when chasing a forearm and bicep pump.

Laughing Again

Things start to get even crazier. I can’t help but laugh. The guy has 440 kilos on a bar and just stands and holds it in a static Zercher hold. That is crazy weight.


But I don’t know what that this is.

Muscle Snatch

Here he does a muscle snatch from a two-block position. He reps it out. He just cranks reps out. One thing I will say about Kyriakos Grizzly to this movement is that he is strong in the upper back and lower back. To do this movement, the whole yoke has to be well developed around that spine and all the way into the traps. Especially when doing four to six reps at one hundred kilos plus.

Agility

What I found interesting about this 46-year-old man who ways around 212 kilos, is that doing this high rep jump set of nearly thirty reps, and maybe even sad, is that when you are always big and friends talk about how big and strong you are, the attention makes you want to continue to be big and strong. The thing is, as we age, that extra weight isn’t always the best for our health. 

Just don’t swing the arms back when jumping. Swing them forward. 

Bench Press

This is where I got to see him as an actual competitor. He has either 265 or 270 kilos on the bar. He takes the weight off the rack, pauses, big drive off the chest, and executes a bench press incredibly well.


This is a guy who gets ripped on for doing some absurd exercises. But remember, powerlifters’ upper backs, traps, lumbar spines, erectors, all have to be really strong. Having good bench press technique, pausing, and pressing 600+ pounds with no gear takes a lot of upper back strength and foundational work. This is legit.

Recap

Say what you want to say about Grizzly’s Zercher shakes, the guy is strong. That strength doesn’t come from just anywhere. It comes from putting in daily work over the course of a lifetime of consistent effort. Dude is strong, strong. Like capital S strong.


Will I be necessarily programming these movements for my athletes? I can’t say, but the future looks murky in that regard. Regardless, and all props to the man, he does some creative showcases of strength and ain’t weak in any regard.

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Yo, It's Dane

Welcome to the Garage Strength Blog, where it is my goal to provide you with the experience and knowledge I've gained in the strength and conditioning world over many years of learning from both successes and failures. I train elite-level athletes in a multitude of sports from the high school to professional levels, already producing 5 Olympics and 30+ National Champions. If you want to be the next champion I train, check out my strength programs below!

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1 comment

  • For the records: Kyriakos used to be a totally legit competitor a few decades ago, but after a series of accidents in his professional and personnal life (he almost completely ripped one of his triceps during a lifting competition, and has been in a very nasty car crash a short while after, just to name a few), some very severe chronic injuries left him unable to practice like he used to; that’s why we see him do such unorthodox exercises in his videos, because he phisically can’t do anything else.

    Basically, Kyriakos is someone who refused to give up on his passion, eventhough a good half of his body is broken, an despite the fact that he is handicaped.

    turner murray

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