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Saturday, 16 May 2015


The word "gymnasium" comes from the Greek word "gymnazo," which means "to train naked."

Greek philosopher Plato's academy in Athens contained a gymnasium. In ancient Greece gymnasiums were places where athletes could train for the competitions in public games, such as the Olympic Games.

Part of Plato's teachings was that the ideal state ought to begin in the body of man, which must be made strong through sport. "Sport is where men become gods", he wrote.

The first ever bras, called strophiums, were worn by Roman lady gymnasts.

In 1811 the German physical educationist.Frederick Ludwig Jahn, who is acknowledged as 'the father of gymnastics,' opened the first modern gymnasium (Turnplatz) in Berlin.

Jahn's gymnasia became centers for political gatherings, and they were closed in 1818. He was arrested in 1819, and suffered five years' imprisonment.

Charles Atlas (1894-1972), was an Italian-American who in 1922 won a contest for "the World's Most Perfectly Developed Man."  To capitalize on his reputation, he opened a gymnasium to teach his system.

Treadmills were originally created to punish English prisoners in 1818.The first gym treadmill was designed and built at the University Of Washington in 1952.

Source Europress Family Encyclopedia 1999. 

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