Home SWAGGAR HEALTH & FITNESS Welcome to Thor’s Power Gym, the Lifting Valhalla of the World’s Strongest...

Welcome to Thor’s Power Gym, the Lifting Valhalla of the World’s Strongest Man Hafþór Björnsson

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There must be something in the Icelandic water. Despite having a population roughly the size of Coventry’s, the Nordic nation has an immense physical presence. “We have won the World’s Strongest Man nine times,” says the current champion, Hafþór Björnsson. “Only the Americans have won more often, 11 times, but they have a few more people.” At Thor’s Power Gym, Björnsson is forging the next generation of Viking conquerors.

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Much like the man – who, at 6ft 9in and 180kg, aptly plays Gregor “the Mountain” Clegane in Game of Thrones – his facility is head and shoulders above the competition. After all, this is Björnsson’s personal training space.

Become one of the 40 or so members here, or take advantage of day passes, and you can get lifting tips from a man who can press a 213kg log over his head. So, it won’t be your average PT session, in other words.

“I opened the gym because strongman has very specific events,” says Björnsson. “To be the best, you have to have the right equipment at your disposal.” Which means it’s at your disposal, too: the list of lifting tools here is predictably enormous.

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Expect to see Björnsson and aspiring strongmen take on a giant set of a 162kg log lift, a 162kg axle press, a 105kg circus dumbbell press and a 135kg block press.

To make the strongest possible start to your training this year, go berserk in lifting Valhalla with Thor. And drink some of the water while you’re at it.

4 Things You Need to Know About Thor’s Power Gym and Hafþór Björnsson

Weight of the World: Back in October, Björnsson was on hand to watch a set of “monster Atlas stones” being custom made for his gym. The heaviest of them weighed 266kg, equivalent to a fully grown grizzly bear. We suggest you start a little lighter, though.

Boulder to Shoulder: Warned of an upcoming natural-stone-lifting event, Björnsson went hunting with his father and grandfather for boulders in the wilds north of Reykjavík. It paid off – he won the Arnold Strongman Classic as one of the few to complete a rep.

Grip it To Rip It: The axle barbell’s fat grip will tax your hand strength and earn you crossover gains in every other lift. If you want to emulate the pros and lift it overhead, however, make sure you do so under Björnsson’s watchful eye.

Get in on The Act: The circus dumbbell is a tricky piece of kit to master: its overblown size means you’ll need a lot of shoulder stability to press it overhead. To improve yours, incorporate face pulls and the bottoms-up kettlebell press into your training plan.



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