| Retired 1971|
| October 31, 1930 (age 85)
Prineville, Oregon (1930-10-31) |
Mr. Universe, Amateur, 1953
Mr. Universe, Professional, 1956, 1961, 1967, 1971
Mildred Elizabeth Pasley, Harold Frank Pearl
Fontelle Pearl, Harold Pearl
Keys to the inner universe, Getting Stronger, Getting Stronger: Weight Tr, Tratado General de La Muscu, La Musculacion
Reg Park, Steve Reeves, Sergio Oliva, Dave Draper, Jeff Galloway
Bill Pearl Wikipedia
William Arnold "Bill" Pearl (born October 31, 1930) is an American retired professional bodybuilder and athlete. During the 1950s and '60s, he won many titles and awards, including winning the Mr. Universe contest five times, and was named "World’s Best-Built Man of the Century." He became an expert trainer and author on bodybuilding.
Pearl was born in Prineville, Oregon. His first major victory was in the 1953 Amateur Mr Universe contest (in which he beat out a then 23-year-old Sean Connery). He actively competed until his retirement in 1971 after winning the Mr. Universe one last time, over superstars Frank Zane, Reg Park and Sergio Oliva. In all, he won the professional Mr Universe 4 times in an 18-year span, which was unprecedented at the time.
He was the first professional bodybuilder to author bodybuilding training courses/booklets. He is also the first to pose to music, and was especially noted in performing exhibitions doing an entire posing routine of Eugen Sandow (who is known as the man who invented bodybuilding). Ever the showman, along with his lifelong coach Leo Stern, Pearl would wear a fake mustache, leotards, a fig leaf, and a late-19th century backdrop, all for providing the exact effect of the Sandow era. Leo Stern had some different ideas when training Bill such as drinking cream to gain weight that did seem to work to produce a powerful build.Pearl was equally as famous for performing his strongman routine, which included tearing of license plates, bending penny spike nails, and blowing up a hot water bottle as well as his ability on the bench press exercise using up to 500 lbs.
He is the author of the popular exercise book, Getting Stronger: Weight Training for Men and Women, which has sold over 350,000 copies in the United States and has been translated into four other languages, including Chinese. His book Keys To The INNER Universe, is still to this day considered to be a "must read" for bodybuilders. It contains 1,500 weight-training exercises and weighs five pounds. It is used extensively by professional athletes, trainers and serious bodybuilders and has sold over 60,000 copies.
Pearl had his own monthly question-and-answer column called "Pearl of the Universe" in the bodybuilding magazine MuscleMag International as well as one in Muscle Builder (later Muscle & Fitness) magazine, entitled "Wisdom of Pearl" in the 1970s & 1980s.
In 2003 with coauthor Kim Shott, Pearl published his autobiography, Beyond the Universe: The Bill Pearl Story.
Pearl became a vegetarian at age 39 and is the best-known vegetarian bodybuilder. Bill's diet is lacto-ovo vegetarian, which means he eats eggs and dairy products.
During the 1980s, Pearl served as a mentor, trainer, and training partner to many of the top professionals that were still competing. One such individual was Mr. Olympia, Chris Dickerson.
In 2004, Pearl was awarded the Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic Lifetime Achievement Award for significantly impacting the world of bodybuilding. In November 2004, Bill Pearl acted as Master of Ceremonies for Sri Chinmoy's Weightlifting celebration, in New York.
In 2011 Pearl appeared in the documentary Challenging Impossibility describing when he hosted the 2004 strength exhibition by spiritual teacher and peace advocate Sri Chinmoy. The film was an Official Selection of the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival.
Pearl is 5' 9" tall.
He currently lives in Phoenix, Oregon.
Source:1952 Mr. San Diego, 3rd place (San Diego, California)
1952 Mr. Oceanside (Oceanside, California)
1953 Mr. Southern California (Los Angeles, California)
1953 Mr. California (Los Angeles, California)
1953 A.A.U., Mr. America (Indianapolis, Indiana)
1953 N.A.B.B.A., Mr. Universe Amateur (London, England)
1956 Mr. U.S.A., Professional (Los Angeles, California)
1956 N.A.B.B.A., Mr. Universe, Professional, Tall Man’s Class (London, England)
1961 N.A.B.B.A., Mr. Universe, Professional (London, England)
1967 N.A.B.B.A., Mr. Universe, Professional (London, England)
1971 N.A.B.B.A., Mr. Universe, Professional (London, England)
1974 W.B.B.A., World’s Best-Built Man of the Century (New York, New York)
1978 Entered into W.B.B.A., Hall of Fame (New York, New York)
1978 Elected the I.F.B.B. National Chairman of the Professional Physique Judges Committee (Acapulco, Mexico)
1988 Entered into Pioneers of Fitness Hall of Fame
1992 Entered into Gold’s Gym Hall of Fame
1994 Guest of Honor of the Association of Oldetime Barbell & Strongmen 12th Annual Reunion
1994 Entered into The Joe Weider Hall of Fame
1995 A.A.U. Lifetime Achievement Award
1995 Oscar Heidenstam Foundation Hall of Fame
1996 American Powerlifters Federation Hall of Fame
1997 International Chiropractors Association Sports & Fitness Man of the Year
1999 I.F.B.B. Hall of Fame Inductee
2000 Spirit of Muscle Beach Award
2001 World Gym Lifetime Achievement Award
2001 Society of Weight-Training Injury Specialists Lifetime Achievement Award
2002 Canadian Fitness Award for 60+ Years of Inspiration to the Industry
2002 National Fitness Trade Journal Lifetime Achievement Award
2003 Iron Man magazine Peary & Mabel Radar Lifetime Achievement Award
2004 Arnold Schwarzenegger Lifetime Achievement Award
2006 PDI Night of Champions Lifetime Achievement Award
Beyond the Universe – The Bill Pearl Story
Getting in Shape: 32 Workout Programs for Lifelong Fitness
Getting Back in Shape: 32 Workout Programs for Lifelong Fitness
Getting Stronger: Weight Training for Men and Women
Getting Stronger: Weight Training for Men and Women (Revised Edition)
Keys to the INNER Universe
"Pearls of Wisdom - Bill Pearl a Bodybuilding Legend" (DVD, 150 minutes)
"Bill Pearl & Dave Draper Seminar" (DVD, 75 minutes)