Steven Seagal is the New Face of Soviet-Era Fitness

Vladimir Putin and Steven Seagal

Russian president Vladimir Putin has teamed up with washed up action star Steven Seagal to promote Stalin-era fitness for Russian children.

The revival of the Soviet-era physical evaluation program (GTO), will require all school children to pass fitness tests. GTO, the Russian acronym for Ready for Labour and Defense, was first introduced in 1931 by Soviet dictator Josef Stalin. Those who passed the physical training tests received badges. Those who didn’t were sent to the Gulag (I presume). The program kind of fizzled out with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Now Putin’s been feeling a little nostalgic about the Soviet era and has decided to bring it back.

“I think it would be quite appropriate to recall the positive experience of past decades when the so-called GTO, Ready for Labour and Defence, was in use in our country,” Putin said. “The revival of this system – in a new, modern format – could bring major benefits.”

I suppose. I mean, the world’s fattest kid is from Russia. He could certainly stand a little more physical training in his life. And what better way to promote fitness than with an overweight former action star!

Putin and Steven Seagal sat down to lunch this week and then attended a judo match at a martial arts school in Moscow. Prior to the match, in what one can only hope was a choreographed moment, Putin posed with a group of school children and Steven Seagal acted as his “bodyguard” to pull him out of the crowd. Putin and Seagal then watched children practice martial arts but did not join in themselves. Probably for the best, as Putin has a black belt in judo.

Apparently this wasn’t a one-time meeting. “Putin and Seagal have long been friends, and they regularly meet each other,” Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s spokesperson said.

Out of the two friends, however, one would think that Putin is a better example of physical fitness than Steven Seagal. Case in point:

Buff Putin

FYI, one of these images may be photoshopped.

Via: The National Post

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