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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Physical Face Off: Putin vs. Abbott

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In recent world news, there has been heightened tension between Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Russian President Vladimir Putin, raising the debate of who would fare better in a fight should the two world leaders face off.

On Oct. 13, Abbott made a statement toward Putin during a press conference to reporters regarding the MH17 tragedy that killed 38 Australians. During the conference, Abbott told reporters, “Look, I’m going to shirt-front Mr Putin… you bet I am. I am going to be saying to Mr. Putin, Australians were murdered. They were murdered by Russian-backed rebels using Russian-supplied equipment.”

In Australian rules football, “shirtfront” is a term used to describe an aggressive frontal physical challenge, making Abbott’s statement a confrontational one.

Last year, my Health Fitness Revolution team and I created an article on the top 11 fittest heads of state, and Putin ranked No. 1 and Abbott No. 3. Taking the No. 2 spot was American President Barack Obama. As part of the criteria in our ranking, we considered which individuals were actively spreading the message of the importance of a healthy lifestyle. With Obama and his First Lady taking a strong stance on fighting obesity and living a healthy lifestyle, he took the No. 2 spot over Abbott.

Abbott’s statement brings up the question of who would win in a physical fight between the two of them if they went head-to-head. Considering the fact that both men are in top physical condition, this will be a tough call as to who would win. Here’s a breakdown of their physical prowess:


    • Active martial artist since the age of 14, and still practices judo today.
    • Master of sport and six Dan in sambo
    • Champion of Leningrad in judo and sambo
    • Six Dan black belt in kyokushin kaikan, an active competitor since 1966
  • Honorary ninth Dan ranking in Taekwondo by Choue Chung-won, president of the World Taekwondo Federation
  • As a KGB agent, he went through the extreme regimen of survival training that KGB is known for
  • Performs cardio training regularly through cycling, playing hockey, horseback riding and alpine skiing
  • He trains regularly as a survivalist and is known around the world for such training

Putin, age 62, is 1.70 meters tall (5-foot-7) and weighs 77 kg (about 170 pounds)


    • Former amateur boxer at Oxford University
    • Former rugby forward
    • Competes in Ironman triathlons
    • Cycles, jogs, lifts weights and surfs on a daily basis
  • Specially trained in Australian special forces boot camps

Abbott, age 56, is 1.80 meters tall (5-foot-11) and weighs 85 kg (about 185 pounds).

As a fitness expert and former martial artist, I find it exciting that we could even talk about two heads of state who are great ambassadors of healthy lifestyle in their respective countries. It’s not important who would win in a physical fight, but rather, the fact that these two healthy and fit men can motivate millions of people in their countries to exercise and lead healthy lives. For this reason, they have strong self-esteem, discipline and are very successful.

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