Sunday, June 29


Medicine Balls in America

This gentleman is Aaron Molyneaux Hewlett. He is seated with Indian clubs, a medicine ball, dumbbells, and a wand, these instruments were known as the "Four Horsemen of Hand-Held Exercise Tools". Hewlett was the first director of the Harvard College Gymnasium built in 1859. He taught there until his death in 1871. I recently discovered this man through an ESPN Magazine article online, titled "The Ball That Just Wont Die" by David Fleming. It has opened up a whole new vein of history on medicine balls for me. According to Mr. Fleming, the medicine ball's first recorded appearance in America was in one of these photos. Hewlett sits at his desk, one foot propped on a medicine ball. Additionally, Fleming reports that the term medicine ball first appeared in an English-language dictionary in 1895. Check out the above title link for some mind blowing medicine ball stuff, and Google, A Conversation with Aaron Molyneaux Hewlett and his Friends. These photographs are the only posed pictures I have seen with the "Four Horsemen of Hand-Held Exercise Tools" or as I thought they were called The Four Horseman of Fitness. I thought it might be just a myth, but this is hard evidence of pre-Civil War physical education; and, at Harvard!
We are still meeting and doing our Daily Dozen every MWF @ 7am on the BB court behind Zilker Elem; You'll come.

"Is you is, or is you not?"
We is!
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