BORN: c. 1918 (died 1993?)


[NOTE: Info in this entry comes from an article by Roland Beaulieu published in Issue # 191 of Denis Reno’s Weightlifter’s Newsletter. Unfortunately no details were given of Personal Bests as an Olympic-style lifter or any titles won. –Editor]  Norman Newhall, Sr. lived and coached in the Peabody/Beverly, Massachusetts area. He became familiar with weight training at age 21 while serving in the US Army but may only have started competing after age 30. Norm coached at the Beverly ‘Y‘ and later ran the Tanner City Barbell Club out of his own basement in Peabody. This facility had one of those famous pits dug in the floor to allow lifters to put the bar overhead with locked arms without smashing into the floor joists of the house above. Norman stood about 5 feet 6 inches tall and his bodyweight was around 170 pounds. While employed during the 1950s as a machinist at the GE plant in Lynn, MA he crafted a lot of custom barbell plates. These reportedly ranged up to 180 lbs. (!!). How could one possibly employ such plates? Well, Newhall was serious about squatting. He reportedly did 70 reps with 205 lbs.; 35 with 300; 20 with 350; 10 with 400 and a single with 435 lbs. To make sure the monster plates got used, he is said to have done 50 quarter-squats with 1,000 lbs.! He also could Bench Press 205 lbs. for 20 straight reps. Norm was also noted for his hand strength, able to do pull-ups by pinch-gripping “2 X 4” lumber instead of grasping a traditional pull-up bar. He reportedly trained many hours a week and ate prodigiously to fuel these sessions. Newhall’s own son, Norm, Jr. (“Butch”) and Roland Beaulieu were among his coaching students.