When it comes to the warriors of the past in cinema, we are often shown real exemplary bodybuilders. But were they really such heroes as they are shown to us in films?
Obviously, such an idea has developed due to the fact that the soldiers were forced to carry the heaviest armor. Judge for yourself, if only one cuirass, consisting of chest and dorsal plates, weighed about 30 kilograms.
Of course, a bloated, muscular man looks spectacular on the screen, but it was not so much physical strength that was important, but endurance, which made it possible to make long marches, being constantly with weapons in anticipation of battle.
Protein nutrition and 8 hours of sleep are, of course, good, but not in the conditions in which the soldiers lived. In addition, large muscles would give additional weight, which is an unaffordable luxury on the battlefield. Probably 20 kilos of body weight would allow you to survive more blows, but most likely you would just be a whipping bag.
Yes, and huge “banks” are not all a guarantee of strength. Stronger will be a wiry warrior, who does not have a lack of interfering non-functional muscles.
Most of the warriors of antiquity were just strong and wiry people, able to throw off a heavy load and instantly engage in hand-to-hand combat, and not swing through the training system, which, by the way, was formed only in the 19th century.
The easiest way to imagine the warriors of the past is to look at weightlifters. Most often, these are fit and rather lean guys, capable of lifting rather big weights above their heads.
The same can be said about today’s special forces, among whom they are mostly not pitching, but simply strong, capable of enduring complex forced marches with full gear. According to experts, the best weight for fighters of elite units varies between 75 and 80 kilograms.
So Mr. Olympia has never been among the warriors. Moreover, they did not stand out for their huge cinematic growth, because until the 20th century, the average height of men was noticeably lower. For example, in the ranks of the Vikings, you would pass for a giant if you were 180 cm tall.
The knights of the Middle Ages did have a height of 165 cm, as evidenced by the preserved armor. So, if in the movies warriors almost rise above the human flow on the battlefield, in real life you would hardly pay attention to them in the crowd.
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