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Meet The Unlikely Strongman Who’s Trying To Bring The Old-School Spectacle Back

Published on August 3, 2015 by Fast Company

When you think of the classic strongman, images come to mind of barrel-chested behemoths manhandling objects that would give the average person a hernia just by looking at it. Chris Schoeck isn’t that tall (5’7″) nor is he particularly muscular (he cuts a lean 155 lbs.) but he’s perfected a skill that’s given him far more than bragging rights.

Director Dave Carroll’s surprisingly touching documentary Bending Steel homes in on Schoeck taking his hobby of bending steel beams, rods, and wrenches from the secret sanctity of his basement to center stage in front of a crowd at New York City’s Coney Island. In the film, Schoeck isn’t braggadocio about his remarkable feats—quite the contrary, he’s locked inside a loneliness of his own design. It was as if he only participated in life when it was necessary.[…]


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