Charles Atlas is a name many associate with the modern view of health and fitness. Jack LaLanne can also be said in this same context. Both offered their idealistic outward view of the correct shape and proportions for society (mostly males) and the techniques and approaches to achieve it. No matter what the intent of the original messages the impact has been a broadly accepted interpretation that fitness is "looking fit", and even today no-one wants to be the the nerd on the beach getting sand kicked in his face. I agree with the assertion that these men created the foundation that is the root of modern day body building and first brought concepts of general fitness to the larger population. My question is: How did the term fitness come to mean using isolated portions of Olympic and power lifting exercises to achieve the "look of a body builder"?.
I think Jack was more movement goal oriented but the ad campaign for Atlas is one which nearly 70 years later most teenage boys of even today at least will recognize.