Kalman Szkalak ……1976 AAU Mr. America
The 1976 AAU Mr. America contest, held in Philadelphia, saw a newcomer, Kalman Szkalak, defeat several of the nation’s top bodybuilders.
Born in 1953, Kalman Szkalak was among the Hungarian refugees forced to flee their homeland, following the unsuccessful attempt to overthrow the Soviet-supported regimen ruling their country. The family settled in Wilmington, Delaware, and Kalman, an athletic youngster, began weight training at age 17.
At his first physique competition, Kalman won the 1976 AAU Mr. California title. Weeks later, he captured the AAU Mr. America crown. Then, in 1977 he won the IFBB Mr. USA award.
At the height of five-feet, ten-inches, and weighing 215 pounds, Szkalak’s arms measured 20 inches; chest, 52 inches; waist, 30 inches; thighs, 26.5 inches; and calves, 17 inches.
In 1978, Kalman attempted to organize a professional bodybuilding union in opposition to IFBB’s control over competing professional bodybuilders. However, his efforts failed. That year, he brought a $1million lawsuit against the Weider organization for breach of contract.
With the 1978 IFBB Mr. Olympia contest taking place during Szkalak’s legal action against the Weiders, he placed fifth at the event. In retaliation for what he regarded as an inequitably low placing, Kalman promptly struck a martyr’s pose on stage: both arms outstretched; head hanging to one side; feet crossed; saying later, he was “crucified by the bodybuilding hierarchy.” He did not compete again in any IFBB event.
At the 1980 World Amateur Bodybuilding Association (WABBA) “Pro” World Cup, Szkalak paced second in his class and then second at the 1982 NABBA Professional Mr. Universe. He retired from hardcore bodybuilding to become a hardcore competitive cyclist and was still winning trophies in the early 2000’s.Bill Pearl March 16. 2020
Kal Szkalak Contest History
Mr America – AAU, Overall Winner
Mr America – AAU, Most Muscular, 2nd
Mr America – AAU, Tall, 1st
Mr California – AAU, Winner
Mr USA – IFBB, Overall Winner
Mr USA – IFBB, HeavyWeight, 1st
Universe – IFBB, HeavyWeight, 1st
Olympia – IFBB, 5th
Olympia – IFBB, HeavyWeight, 3rd
Pro World Cup – WABBA, 2nd
Pro World Cup – WABBA, 6th
Universe – Pro – NABBA, 2nd