Late in 2002 however, a medical condition put a detour on his training journey. An orthopedic surgeon had diagnosed Chris with degenerative and herniated disks in his back. He had been recommended prescriptions and surgery to relieve the injury and was told no more lifting. Chris declined the recommendations and sought to treat the problem with more natural means. After gaining multiple opinions on his condition, Chris chose to treat his injury with chiropractic care, inversion, strict exercise, and nutrition. At only six weeks after diagnosis Chris was back in the gym performing the powerlifting movements that had become a way of life for him.
After achieving the goals in powerlifting he had set for himself he redirected his efforts back to a more fitness oriented training routine in 2005. Nearly a year later in October 2006 a friend of his was telling Chris about a TV program where someone ripped a phonebook in half. Knowing that Chris was strong from working with him, his friend asked him if he could do it too. At the request of his friend, Chris Rider ripped a phonebook in half the first time he tried it! From that moment on Chris was hooked on Oldetime Strength Feats! He began trying all sorts of feats from tearing decks of playing cards to rolling up frying pans into a tube shape to twisting horseshoes, all of which were successful first attempts for him!
Since discovering his ability to perform feats of strength, Chris has been building a long list of accomplishments in his field. Some of these are bending 6", 8", & 10" adjustable wrenches into "S" shapes by hand. Braking and setting multiple world records. Performing for a wide range of venues large and small in the US and Europe. Leading the resurgence of the Coney Island Strongmen. Chris has become known as "Hairculese" for the feats he performs with his long red hair such as towing trucks and airplanes & breaking chains. Hairculese has been featured in many media outlets such as TV's Science Channel, The Washington Post, The New York Post, The New York Times, Time Out New York, and The Wall Street Journal to name a few.
In 2011 Chris and a protégé of his were approached by a NY film company about making a feature documentary. Since the 2013 World Premier at Tribeca Film Festival, "Bending Steel" has been touring film festivals throughout the United States and across the world to fantastic reviews and has received many awards.
Chris now focuses on training others to achieve things they may have never thought possible, or possible for them. Beginning as a one on one in person coach in 2009, to working online with clients, to founding the Coney Island Strongman Workshop in 2014, Chris has a passion for helping others unlock their mind to overcome their limits and achieve greater things in all aspects of their lives. To continue this vision and show the perspective shifting benefits of practicing feats of strength, Coach Chris "Hairculese" Rider now offers the BreakThrough Strength Workshop to bring this life changing activity to any able bodied adult who is ready to change their outlook & achieve new levels of confidence and success through consistent hard work and proper progression. Life is a journey, pick your path and keep moving forward.
From an unlikely beginning of being out of shape and overweight, to becoming a physical culture enthusiast, to overcoming injury, and on to becoming one of today's top performing strongmen - Chris "Hairculese" Rider, speaker, entertainer, strength coach.
Hairculese standing with the Baron Aircraft he had just towed with his hair.
A few notable accomplishments of Coach Chris since he began his strength journey.
In the fall of 2000 Chris Rider decided to get involved with fitness. Starting out weighing an out of shape 315 pounds while standing 6'04", he worked diligently over the course of 1 year to become a fit 220 pounds! Enjoying his newfound athleticism, Chris began exploring different styles of training and soon was introduced to powerlifting. Chris enjoyed the new challenges that powerlifting had to offer as well as the increase in muscular size and strength, building back a solid 40 pounds of muscle.