Leonid Zhabotinsky: Early life, Career & Net Worth

Leonid Zhabotinsky was a famous well-recognized Ukrainian weightlifter.

Similarly, he has set around 19 world records in the super weight class. Moreover, Leonid is a two-time Olympic champion.

Furthermore, he initiated an idea in 1979 to open a club, a children’s and youth school of the Olympic reserve “Spartak” for weightlifting.

Likewise, Leonid and his hometown people built the Leonid Zhabotinsky Weightlifting Sports School in Zaporozhye.

Moreover, the city hosts tournaments every year to honor Leonid Zhabotinsky.

Leonid Zhabotinsky during his early days.
Leonid Zhabotinsky during his early days.

Additionally, he was also referred to as The Strongest Man of the World in the 60s and 70s.

Similarly, apart from weightlifting, he had also served in the military as a colonel.

Moreover, Leonid was the vice-rector of the educational work and security of the Moscow Institute of Entrepreneur and law.

Furthermore, Leonid was the teenage idol of Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is also a bodybuilder, an actor, businessman, and producer.

In the article, you will find detailed information about Leonid Zhabotinsky’s early life, career, and total net worth from his weightlifting profession.

Quick Facts

Here are astonishing quick facts about Leonid Zhabtynsky:

Full Name Leonid Ivanovych Zhabotinsky
Nick/Celebrated name Leonid Zhabotynsky
Date of birth January 28, 1968
Birthplace Uspenka, Sumy, Ukrainian, SSR
Death year January 14, 2016 (77 years old)
Death place Zaporozhia, Ukraine
Parents Ivan Philipovich (father)
Siblings Not available
Nationality Ukrainian
Ethnicity Not available
Zodiac Sign  Aquarius
Height 1.94m (6 feet 4 inches)
Weight 163kg (359lbs) (1968)
Body Type Athletic
Eye Color Light brown
Hair Color Light brown
Sexual Orientation Straight
Academic Qualification Kharkiv Pedagogical Institute (1964)
Wife Rais Zhabotinsky
Children Ruslan Zhabotinsky
Vilen Zhabotinsky
Profession Professional weightlifting
Military Rank Colonel
Achievements and Titles Clean & Jerk 185.5 kg (1974)
Represented Country  Soviet Union
Coach Mikhail Svetlichny
Mentor Yefim Eisenstadt
Years active 1957-1974
Retired Year 1974
Net worth $7 million – $8 million
Weightlifting Merch Kettlebells, Sandbags, Dumbbells, Barbells
Social Network Not Available
Last update March, 2024

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Early Life and Family Background

Leonid was born on January 28, 1938, to a Cossack family. Similarly, he was born in Uspenka, Sumy Oblast, Ukraine, SSR.

Likewise, his father, Ivan Philipovich, also was an athlete. Furthermore, in an interview in 1967,  he stated that neither of his parents had an outstanding physique, and he bore his grandfather’s resemblance.

Sadly, apart from this, there is no detailed information about his family background.

Similarly, he spent his childhood in Zaporizhia. Moreover, he worked at the Kharkiv Tractor Plant after he graduated from secondary school.

In addition, during that time, he was coached by Mikhail Svetlichny in the local weightlifting club of the Armed Forces Sports Society.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Educational Background

Leonid graduated from a seven-year secondary school. However, sadly, there is no information about his secondary-level education.

Similarly, Leonid enrolled in the Kharkiv Pedagogical Institute in 1964. Likewise, he earned his doctorate in 1969.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Body Measurements

The famous Ukraine weightlifter stood 1.94m (6 feet 4 inches) tall. Similarly, Leonid wore 47th size shoes.

Similarly, he weighed around 163kg (359lbs). Yet, despite his weight, he had excellent coordination, speed, and quick reaction. Likewise, his impressive size never interfered with his training.

Furthermore, Leonid’s eyes color was light brown. Likewise, his hair color was golden brown. 

In addition, the January-born zodiac sign was Aquarius. Likewise, as the traits of Aquarius, he was intellectual, thoughtful, and charismatic.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Wife and Children

Leonid was married to Raisa. Similarly, the couple was blessed with two sons.

Likewise, their son’s names are Ruslan and Vilen Zhabotinsky. Furthermore, both of them as well compete in weightlifting.

Apart from this, sadly, there is no further information regarding his family members.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Professional Career

Leonid kicked off his career in 1957. Similarly, he debuted in the Ukrainian SSR Championship. Likewise, he managed to win the bronze medal in the championship.

Furthermore, he broke the world super weight record in 1963. Likewise, he set another one in 1974 with a snatch of nearly 409 pounds.

Moreover, for the Olympic title in 1964 in Tokyo, he faced off against archrival and Soviet teammate Yuri Vlassov. Similarly, Yuri was heavily favored to defend his Olympic title. 

However, Leonid managed to defeat him by breaking the world record and also claimed the World title.

Furthermore, Leonid always lost to Yuri in every competition. Similarly, he managed to win three consecutive silver medals behind Yuri in the Soviet Championships. However, he won the Soviet title in 1964 in Yuri’s absence.

Moreover, he followed his 1964 victory with victories at the World Championships in 1965 and 1966. 

Leonid Zhabotinsky posing for a photo.
Leonid Zhabotinsky is posing for a photo.

Similarly, Leonid participated and managed to win the Europen Championships in 1966 and 1968 as well.

Furthermore, he won the title of the Soviet title in 1965 and 1967-69. In addition, the Soviet Cup in 1973.

Eventually, Leonid was personally mentored for ten years by the Honored Coach of Ukraine, Yefim Eisenstadt. In addition, he was coached by Mikhail Svetlichny.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Achievements and Awards

Honors and Titles

Interestingly, Leonid is awarded different honors and titles. Similarly, Leonid received his first honor, the Master of Sport of the USSR, in 1958.

Likewise, he has received another title, the Merited Master of  Sports of the USSR, in 1964.

Furthermore, his other honor includes the Order of the Red Banner, which he received on March 30, 1965.

Likewise, after a few years, on July 24, 1968, he was honored with the Order of the Red Banner of Labour.

Leonid received his first Order of Merit (Ukraine), 3rd class, in 2002. Furthermore, his next title includes Order of Merit (Ukraine), 2nd class on January 28, 2008.

In addition, his other titles and honors include the Medal “For the Development of Virgin Lands and the Medal “Veteran of the Armed Forces of the USSR.”

The weightlifter received the medal “In Commemoration of the 850th Aniversary of Moscow,” and Jubilee Medal “40, 50, 60, 65, 70 years of victory in the Great Patriotic War 1941-1945.”

He also received “Honoured Worker of Higher Professional Education of the Russian Federation,” “Medal of Zhukov,” and Medal “For Impeccable Service 2nd & 3rd class.”

Olympics Career

Leonid has won a total of two gold medals in the Olympics games. Similarly, he won his first gold medal in the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games held in Japan.

Likewise, his successive gold medal was in the 1968 Mexico City Olympic Games held in Mexico.

World Weightlifting Championships

Leonid won a bronze medal in his first World Weightlifting Championships competition in 1963. Similarly, the championship was held in Stockholm.

Likewise, he managed to grab the gold medal in the championships held in Japan in 1964.

Furthermore, for three consecutive years, from 1964-1966, he grabbed the gold medal in the event. Likewise, the 1965 championship was held in Teheran, and 1966 was held in East Berlin.

Similarly, 1968 was an unexpected year for him as he won two gold medals in the same year in the same country in Mexico City.

European Weightlifting Championships

Leonid won the silver medal in the 1961 European Weightlifting Championships. Similarly, the championship was held in Stockholm.

Likewise, he won the gold medals in the 1966 East Berlin and the 1968 Leningrad.

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USSR Weightlifting Championships

Leonid won the silver medal for three consecutive years, from 1961-1963. Moreover, the game was held in Dnipropetrovsk, Tbilisi, and Moscow, respectively.

Furthermore, he won the gold medals from 1964-1967 in the USSR Weightlifting Championships. Similarly, the championship was held in different countries.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Retirement

Leonid started coaching weightlifters at the Soviet Army after he announced his retirement.

Similarly, he worked as a military consultant and weightlifting coach in Madagascar from 1987 to 1991. Furthermore, he announced his retirement as a colonel in 1991.

Moreover, after retiring as a colonel, he joined the Moscow Institute of Business and Law as a pro-rector. Likewise, this is the first private higher education facility in Russia.

Leonid Zhabotinsky: Controversy

Fortunately, Leonid has managed to keep his profile clean. Therefore, there is no record of his dispute.

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Leonid Zhavotinsky: Invitation of Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a famous Hollywood film actor and bodybuilder. Similarly, the athlete is widely recognized for his role in the movie, Terminator.

Interestingly, Arnold turned out to be the biggest fan of Leonid. Similarly, Leonid is the idol of Arnold.  

Leonid Zhavotinsky with arnold
From right Leonid Zhabotinsky, Ruslan Zhabotinsky, and Arnold Schwarzenegger during Arnold Classic sports Festival in 2004.

Therefore, Arnold had invited Leonid and his elder son, Ruslan, to his Arnold Classic Sports Festival in 2004 in Colombus.

Leonid Zhavotinsky: Accident and Injuries

Fortunately, Leonid has not been a part of any critical accident or injuries.

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Leonid Zhavotinsky: Death

Sadly, Leonid died on Thursday, January 14, 2016. Similarly, he was just 77 years old. 

Likewise, his elder son, Ruslan, announced his death. However, his son did not specify the cause of his death. 

Furthermore, his memorial service was held in the Leonid Zhabotinsky Weightlifting Sports School in his hometown, Zaporozhye, Ukraine, on January 16, 2016.

Leonid Zhavotinsky: Net worth

His involvement in different jobs even after his retirement has also helped him earn a fortune.

Similarly, the total net worth of Leonid Zhavotinsky is estimated to be around $7 million – $8 million.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the rank of Leonid Zhabotinsky among the athlete born in Ukraine?

The famous weightlifter Leonid Zhabotinsky ranks 11 among the athletics born in Ukraine.

How many gold medals has Leonid Zhabotinsky won in different championships?

Leonid Zhabotinsky had competed in various championships throughout his career.

Therefore, he has won many medals. Similarly, his total count of gold medals is thirteen.

Furthermore, the total count of a bronze medal is one, whereas his silver medal count is four.

What is the book’s name that Leonid Zhabotinsky’s son Ruslan wrote?

In the memory of his father, Ruslan wrote a biography of 15 pages dedicated to his father.

Similarly, the name of the book is My father- Leonid Zhabotinsky. Likewise, this book is available on eBay.

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