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Larry Scott (1938-2014), was an American Bodybuilder during the 'Golden Era,' and the very first (and second for that matter) competitor to win the much coveted Mr. Olympia Bodybuilding title in 1965-1966. He then retired from competitive bodybuilding soon after defending the Olympia, with already many other crowns to his name such as Mr. California, Mr. America and Mr. Universe. Larry started bodybuilding at the tender age of just 16, but by 20 he had already achieved great notoriety within the sport, winning Mr. Idaho 1959 then the following year Mr. California and then in consecutive years Mr. Pacific Coast and Mr. America.

Larry's 10 year transformation, first pic approx. 1955 - second pic approx. 1965

At the time when Larry first started getting into bodybuilding, there were some that believed he didn't possess good enough genetics for the sport. He was deemed to have too narrow shoulders and very small clavicles, thus potentially preventing width and muscle growth. Little did they know that he was going to become one of the greatest bodybuilders of all time! Larry was of course a steroid user, but without correct training it doesn't matter how many steroids you take, you will never reach the stage of development Larry managed in his day. His training approach was very intense and aimed to totally and utterly exhaust every muscle fibre in the chosen body part.

Larry performing what became known as 'Scott' curls - for the biceps, 1960s.

Larry had absolutely enormous arms, and they were without a doubt the trademark feature of his physique. He preferred to train them with a Tri-Set approach, performing three different exercises for them in a non-stop fashion before taking a short rest and repeating it a further 3-4 times. As it turns out, Larry was in fact genetically gifted in the arm department in terms of his muscular attachments; both heads of his bicep muscle attached very low on the the arm, almost coming directly out of the elbow joint. This created a lot of room for development and shape, allowing him to build huge long biceps through his extremely intense training protocols.

Larry performing a classic variation of the single bicep pose, 1965-6.

Larry was an impeccable poser and knew exactly how to highlight his strong body parts and regularly posed for all the popular bodybuilding mags of the day, including 'Mr. America', 'Muscle Builder', 'Muscleboy' and and 'The Young Physique'. However, he only contributed as an author to Joe Weider's magazines, as he was exclusively an IFBB contracted athlete. Widespread media and publications had brought Larry huge fame and he was the biggest star the sport had ever known at that point - so when he retired in 1966 it sent massive shock waves through the bodybuilding community. However, like most humble champions, Larry thought he had achieved all that was possible in the sport and decided to move on to other challenges and personal endeavors.

Larry performing 'spider curls' for his infamous biceps with trademark intensity.

Larry worked under the supervision of one of the first ever bodybuilding gurus, Vince Gironda. After Vince had introduced the Preacher Curl exercise to Scott he used it so much that it was dubbed the 'Scott Curl', and in fact he was the first bodybuilder to build 20 inch arms using Vince's principles. A feat that is made more impressive by the fact very few reach that size even today - and the Golden Era guys were using much simpler principles with even simpler steroids compared to modern times. For that reason, Larry's achievement in the sport will go down in history as not only epic, but also hugely respected and admired. When you're in the gym think of Larry and make your training simple but Intense!

Try this Larry Scott inspired Arm routine:


Preacher Curl - 3 Sets of 6-10 Reps

Dumbbell Hammer Curl - 3 Sets of 6-10 Reps

Pronated Barbell Curl - 3 Sets of 6-10 Reps

Standard Set:

Supinated Spider Curl - 3 Sets of 6-10 Reps


Close Grip Bench Press - 6 Sets of 8-12 Reps

Overhead Barbell Tricep Extension - 6 Sets of 8-12 Reps

Keep rest periods under 1min.

Learn about different set variations here.

Happy Lifting!


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