Bodybuilding icon Tom Platz, renowned for his incredible leg development, has voiced his concern over the underpayment of bodybuilders and called for a change in the prize money. In a recent YouTube video, Platz expressed his belief that the sport can do better in terms of financial rewards. Known as “The Quadfather” during his time in the Golden Era of bodybuilding, Platz was a regular competitor in the Mr. Olympia contest, sharing the stage with the likes of Frank Zane, Franco Columbu, and Lee Haney between 1979 and 1986. Although he never won the prestigious Sandow trophy, Platz’s lower body development earned him a reputation as one of the best in the sport.
After retiring from professional competition, Platz transitioned into coaching, passing on his knowledge and expertise to the next generation of bodybuilders. He has remained dedicated to his own training and fitness, even in his later years. In April 2018, he revealed his legendary calves training plan and a secret routine that he used during his prime to build muscle. Platz also opened up about his use of a two-compound steroid stack, consisting of Winstrol and Deca, to achieve his impressive vascular look. He acknowledged that the use of performance-enhancing drugs played a role in his physique.
Platz has been critical of the direction that the Mr. Olympia and Arnold Classic competitions have taken over the years. He believes that the Mr. America competition, which he considers to have a more holistic style of judging, is a better representation of the sport. In October 2022, Platz praised six-time Mr. Olympia Dorian Yates for his remarkable career, noting that Yates had surpassed his teachings and left a unique legacy in bodybuilding.
In his recent YouTube video, Platz emphasized that bodybuilders are underpaid compared to other professional athletes, citing golf as an example. He argued that even the worst golfer on the pro tour earns around half a million dollars a year, while bodybuilders, including the most successful ones like Phil Heath, are not adequately rewarded. Platz called for a change in the financial rewards offered in the sport and emphasized the importance of training young athletes on how to represent themselves professionally.
Platz’s impact on the sport of bodybuilding continues to be felt today. His influence extends beyond the realm of bodybuilding, as athletes from other disciplines attempt to replicate his legendary training feats. Powerlifter Bradon Gulch recently took on Platz’s famous 1992 squat challenge of performing 23 reps of 525 pounds, narrowly missing the mark by two reps. However, in a surprising turn of events, Mitchell Hooper, the 2023 World’s Strongest Man, managed to break Platz’s record by completing an additional rep, albeit with different form.
Despite his age, Platz remains dedicated to his leg training, as evidenced by a recent update showcasing his ripped physique and freakishly developed quads. Bodybuilding veteran Lee Priest, who trained with Platz recently, revealed that Platz would push himself to the limit using techniques such as static holds.
Platz’s call for improved pay in bodybuilding demonstrates his unwavering support for the athletes of the sport. His legacy and impact on the world of bodybuilding are undeniable, and his voice continues to resonate within the community.