View Full Version : Is it true about Mel Siff?

03-22-2003, 08:30 PM
Has he died?

Mystic Eric
03-22-2003, 08:32 PM
Where did you hear this from?? :(

03-22-2003, 08:37 PM
Avant and MFW.

As well as T-mag and some other forums.

Supertraining hasn't been updated the 18th.

I think it may be true.

Mystic Eric
03-22-2003, 08:40 PM
That's sad. RIP Dr. Siff. :(

03-22-2003, 08:47 PM
I just got word that Mel SIff has passed on.

I just learned from my friend Dr. Michel Joubert that Mel Siff has passed away. Michel was close to Dr. Siff ever since the last Swis seminar. Dr. Siff has produced what is arguably the most complete book on strength training (Supertraining) and has always been known for his generosity and objectivity. I saw him as a mentor and a great source of motivation and knowledge. He will be missed.

-Christian Thibaudeau
Man this kills me.. ever wanted to be like somebody? You know look up to them and hopfully be as good or as great as them one day? Well.. I wanted to be as good or as great as this man right here. I read his information none-stop. He was the smartest man that I've ever had the privilage to talk to and know. Alot of you guys have heard me talk about him and stuff. I prais his books and such. Will their ever be anothe man as great as him probably not. I sit here and write this and believe it or not tears are rolling down my eyes'. I've talked to him several times. He has helped me with training several times over e-mail and at his forum. I dont feel like writing anymore.. sorry


Mystic Eric
03-22-2003, 08:52 PM
again, :(

03-22-2003, 08:55 PM
If there was one person on this earth to be like, Id wanna be like that man. The man was amazing. He had helped me so much. I even was in the process of interviewing him and sending him a shirt from my site. Iam trying to find out more from close friends of his.


03-22-2003, 09:14 PM

03-22-2003, 09:20 PM

Maki Riddington
03-23-2003, 12:00 AM
I would like everyone to know that this man was a great man and I am extremely saddened by his recent departure. He was my mentor and someone who I respected a great deal. I will always cherish and hold dear to myself the very short time I got to spend with him. Although it was only a matter of days, during our conversations he opened my eyes to a whole new world and challenged me to grow. His presence will be greatly missed on this earth and it is a shame that life has once again taken yet another great mind and person away from us. As sad as it is, I know the Lord has taken Dr Siff to be with him.

My heart also goes out to his wife Lisa who is a very very kind women. May God bless her and keep her during this trying time.

03-23-2003, 12:31 AM
I dont know if you guys have planed on starting a tribute or memorial page to him, but we have done started to add information at my website about it. (biography,archives from his forum, and some of his articles he published online.) Iam thinking of buying the domain name MelSiff.com and make a site in his memory. If you guys have anything to add, any thoughts or times with him that you would like to contribute plz let me know.


Mystic Eric
03-23-2003, 12:40 AM
For some of you that haven't heard about Dr. Siff's work, I strongly recommend that you get your hand on his literature. Terrific work.

03-23-2003, 01:10 AM
Who is he, fill me in please. How old was he?

03-23-2003, 02:59 AM
He wrote the book supertraining which is praised by pretty much all who read it.

03-23-2003, 04:43 AM
OMG......I can't believe that.

This is horrible :(

03-23-2003, 04:56 AM

03-23-2003, 07:12 AM
RIP Dr. Siff :cry:

03-23-2003, 08:37 AM
It was apparently Wednesday when he passed. I'd guess a heart attack, but i'm not sure yet.

This has come of quite a shock. When some people die that you just never expect to die. Like when Princes Diana died. Just totally unexpected.

03-23-2003, 10:34 AM
There people that lead people and people look up too..Mel lead the Exercise Science world.


03-23-2003, 11:21 AM
he must have been very smart, was he a bodybuilder him self

03-23-2003, 12:51 PM
Mel Siff has not only amazed people with his great athletic ability but also with his amazing thinking ability as well that has changed the way many athletes today train, think and learn.

Mel Siff was born in Jahannesberg, South Africa. He first started to grow interested in exercise at the young age of 9 years old by watching his father, Dr. Isidor Siff, workout before work. His father grew Mel’s curiosity of exercise by telling him of old strongman back when his father was a child. His father worked in the microsurgical department of a hospital in their home town. He soon started to read books on exercise of old strongman back in the early 20th century. His father also let him read a great deal of literature wrote by coaches back during that time period as well. He first started to study in Marist Brothers College where he had developed a passion for track and field. Due to the lack of weight training facilities, he soon transferred to the University of the Witwatersrand (“Witts”). Here he joined a weightlifting club were they rapidly encouraged him to take up the sport. He started to get into weightlifting, which would soon lead to his number one passion. This would lead him to many years of hard work as a competitor and laid the foundation for many years of search. He soon joined the seminars held by the South African Amateur Weightlifing Federation (SAAWLF) where he soon figured out and grew his curiosity once again as to how we do things. This would end up with him meting a world renowned British coach named Geoff Dyson who wrote A New System of Training in 1946. This book was later known as “Periodisation” and would lay the foundation to follow for years to come. During the 1970’s SAAWLF invited one of the worlds most dominate weightlifter in history and also the first human to snatch 400 pounds, Serge Reding. Serge dominated Olympic weightlifting with the great Alexeyev, who is pronounced as the best in the history of the sport. Serge came to the University he was studying at and they became very close friends. Serge taught him many things during there friendship that would later help him in his weightlifting. Serge Reding taught Siff some of the most important things about exercise and had the largest impact on his life and training. Just three years after Serge visited with Siff he past away to a fatal gun shot. During the time of his death Siff finished his Masters degree in applied mathematics. This is where he became interested to analysis the mathematical approach to his own sport. He soon started to design and build one of the first force places, which are devices used to measure forces and torques involved within the movement of the human body. Not long after Siff developed a force plate he soon used it for his Ph.D research. In 1979 Siff met a man named Lothar Spitz who sent a German publication know as Lehrbeilage Gewitchtheben. Lothar Spitz trained many of the top athletes in the 70’s and 80’s which yielded the insights that stimulated a great deal of his subsequent research. He soon contacted the great Dr. Micheal Yessis, who’s invaluable translation of Soviet training material in his books called Yessies Reviews and The Soviet Sports Review which where made available to him information that would never otherwise have reached the West. In 1983 Dr. Yessis was a physical educational teacher at the University of California, Fullerton, where then Siff asked him to lecture across the world on strength training and Soviet athletic training, which developed a great friendship and bond that would pave the way to many later collaborative efforts from the two greats. After a growing curiosity of many Soviet sports secrets and other things that were brought to him by Dr. Yessis, he decided to visit Russia where he met Dr. Verkhoshansky. Dr. Verkhoshansky was known around the world as one of the most respected experts in special strength training and, programming of sports training who also developed ‘shock’ training (Plyometric’s). Siff then met Linna Moratcheva who spent most of her time Translating and dissecting text presented to him by many Russian scientists who him and Dr. Verkhoshansky met with during his stay in Russia. Siff asked Dr. Verkhoshansky to stay with him in South Africa to study and lecture, where Siff then started to really understand the study of Russian text and applied it practically with Dr. Verkhoshansky. They later met up to form the book called SuperTraining.

After his studying and learning from the best in the world he later went on to achieve great accomplishments. One of Siff’s main achievements was being a Senior Lecturer in mechanical engineering at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa. His major areas of teaching and research at Witts were biomechanics, erogonomics, strength and conditioning and injury rehabilitation. His Masters degree in Applied Mathematics was awarded the Summa Cum Laude in brain research and his Ph.D was in physiology, specializing in biomechanics. He was also presented a great deal of papers internationally at conferences in sports science, physiology, physiotherapy, sports medicine, psychology, engineering, ergonomics, physical education, linguistics and communication. During his weightlifting days he received University, Provincial and National awards for many years. He was the chairman of the South African Weightlifting Associationg for more then two decades and was manager and coach for the South African National Weightlifting Team in 1983 and 1984. He has also revolutionized the National Strength and Conditioning Association with his work in strength training laid the guidelines for the new strength coaches today in the USA and all over the world.

Siff has contributed two legacy works to the world so far in his life, where he also has several other works not published. The two books that have amazed the world are SuperTraining and Facts and Fallacies of Fitness. SuperTraining is know as “The biomechanical and Physiology of Sports Specific Strength Training” which was what its first edition appeared like. There are six editions of SuperTraining published now. During the first four editions Dr. Verkhonskanky contributed to. On the last two great editions he asked to not contribute due to his own personal works where he was working on his own individual publications of strength science, which is ultimately intended to serve as his legacy to the world of sports training. The book know as Facts and Fallacies of Fitness is amid at providing knowledge to the average trainee on the benefits and safety of weight training. In this text he documented and explains some of the most incorrect advice given and many flaws used in today’s Iron Game.

Dr. Mel Siff has not only provided the world with accurate information on strength and conditioning training, but has changed the way many people think and approach things. He has taught many people the values of weight training and has also accomplished many feats that are hard to do in all departments of science and training. For many years to come he will be writing and publishing a great amount of text supporting his theories and science around it.

03-23-2003, 10:03 PM
He's not down yet.

To date no one can confirm that he's actually died-- all we have is the story that he died. No one can get in touch with Mel or Lisa (his wife), and there have been no reports in the obituaries, nor a confirmation from the coroner.

I should have more info tomorrow.

03-24-2003, 04:56 PM

Mystic Eric
03-24-2003, 05:11 PM

03-24-2003, 06:22 PM
I read that message on Strength List earlier, but I'm still holding off on something concrete.

But I think its pretty much a foregone conclusion now.

03-24-2003, 06:33 PM
Where did he live? It might be possible to read an obit on his local newspaper's website.

03-24-2003, 06:35 PM
That's just it...there's been no obit. He lives in Denver, but the problem is we've had people call his house...no answer, and as of last night, there was no info from any hospitals, the coroner, or the police.

I'll know more later on.

03-24-2003, 06:42 PM
I checked the Denver Post online. You're right- no obit during the last week. Anybody know where he might have lived before Denver?

03-24-2003, 06:45 PM
He's from South Africa.

But he's lived in Denver for quite awhile.

Maki Riddington
03-24-2003, 07:00 PM
I think I may have his phone number and address somewhere buried between the mounds of papers I have at home. I'll look for it tonight and if I find it I'll call tomorrow.

03-24-2003, 08:59 PM
Ok, I just got confirmation.

Mel died on the 19th of total heart failure while lifting.

Lisa's in the hospital from shock, which is why no one could get them on the phone.

He'll be missed, but at least no one can say he won't be remembered by those that knew him.

Thanks for everything, Doc.

03-24-2003, 09:31 PM
How old was he?

Maki Riddington
03-24-2003, 09:37 PM
How fitting that he left this world doing what he loved to do the most and what he was known for.

03-24-2003, 10:09 PM
Yes, he died doing something he had more passion in life for then probably anybody else in this world. Its sad and he will be missed by alot of people.

Per ferrum, ad astra (Through Iron, the Stars)- Mel Siff